My friend, may I ask you a question? How does God want you to think about your life? Does he have a personal vision for you that’s incomparable for his vision of anybody else–a “me” vision that suits him and ought to satisfy you?
My friend, life's a story, welcome to This Passing Day. I'm Mark Brunner.
When I was in elementary school I had a friend, Greg, who spent his weekends playing sports and, for the most part, entertaining himself. I, on the other hand, spent a chunk of my weekend trying to keep up with my studies as well as doing my homework, even staying ahead of where I needed to be. That worked for me, yet I saw how Greg both enjoyed himself and got pretty good grades to boot. I began to feel that if he got by this way, so could I. It wasn’t long before I found out that Greg’s life and mine were not synergistic in regard to how I spent my weekends. My spare time not spent in study and homework quickly became a liability for me as my grades declined.
Similarly, is being a Christian an exercise in being like other Christians? You see someone else, someone who cares about Christ and dedicates himself to seeking Christ’s glory, doing something you’re not doing? Perhaps he loves to recreate every weekend, spending time skiing, snowmobiling, hiking, hunting, and fishing? You think: “Well, if he’s able and willing to do all those things and still continue to worship his Savior with a strong faith and commitment, then I should be able to live the same life and be assured that my worship will be just as strong?” Is this how God wants me to think about my spiritual life? Or, does God have a personal vision for each of us, a “me” vision that suits him and is intended to satisfy us?
Here’s a thought from an unknown author: “Vision: the capacity to create a compelling picture of the desired state of affairs that inspires people to respond; that which is desirable, which could be, should be; that which is attainable. A godly vision is right for the times, right for the church, and right for you. A godly vision promotes faith rather than spiritual similarity. A godly vision thus motivates people to action. A godly vision requires individual risk-taking. A godly vision glorifies God, not people.” (Unknown.)
John 6:66 tells us: “From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.” There was a common vision that many who followed Jesus had; a vision that involved themselves more than it involved Jesus. As I coveted Greg’s life as adequate for me, they coveted a spiritual vision that befitted the aims and understanding of the political and nationalistic crowd who obviously followed Jesus. This became their liability and they dropped away. God has a spiritual vision for you and for me as well. It may not be the same as others, but it is his vision. You may have more work to do than me, and I than you. There's no equity in discipleship. A godly vision is a vision that God has personally designed for each of us. Christianity isn’t an exercise in sameness, but rather an “e pluribus unum” (a unity in plurality). A “me” vision is just part of that plurality and each of us should strive to own it and live it personally.
We pray. Heavenly Father, thank you for granting each of us a personal vision of how we are to both serve and follow Christ. Forgive us when we feel inclined to model our spirituality after that of others. Help us Lord to discover that your purpose for us is both individual and in common with that of others. May we never seek sameness, only oneness. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!
Therefore my friend, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry for itself; each day has enough trouble of its own. (Matt 6:34) This Passing Day. May this passing day honor our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and be a blessing to you and everyone you meet. Find a stranger and say hello. Don't let another day pass without your day blessing someone else.
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