Tuesday, May 17, 2016

“I Have To… I Get To!"

"I Have To… I Get To!"

     By the working of His Spirit in our hearts, the Lord transforms responsibility into privilege.

    "It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure" (Philippians 2:13).

    As we seek to do the will of God, He enables us to function according to His leading and enabling, as opposed to operating by our own devices.  "Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might" (Ephesians 6:10).  However, it is not inevitable that we will avail ourselves of such grace.  We can still act as if we are by ourselves, attempting to live our lives in the needless frailty of utilizing mere human capacities.  "Are ye not yet carnal," asked the Apostle Paul of the Corinthians, "and walk as men?" (I Corinthians 3:3).  In other words, do we live as if we are merely human, as opposed to the truth that believers are human beings inhabited by the living God?  Paul referenced "the exceeding greatness of His power" in those who believe (Ephesians 1:19).  Moreover, he prayed that God might be glorified by "the power that worketh in us", which is "exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think" (Ephesians 3:20).  When we respond to such grace in knowledge, faith, and confidence, we avail ourselves of the enabling that, again, changes "I have to" into "I get to".

    A sense of drudgery regarding our privileged responsibilities means two things.  Either we are not actually doing what the Lord would have us do, and thus cannot avail ourselves of His power.  Or, we have forgotten that He calls us to "labor, striving according to His working" (Colossians 1:29).  Such enabling does not mean that we will not feel the physical, mental, and emotional strain of self sacrificial effort.  It rather promises that we will do what we do in the strong sense of witnessing the effort of Another who blesses us no less than the beneficiaries of our labors.  More, in fact, as we find ourselves empowered in a measure far beyond our human means.  Thereby responsibility becomes privilege, the blessing of witnessing Christ walking in us and working in us to fulfill our hearts even as He benefits others through us.  I have to?  I get to!

"We pray always for you, that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfil all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power."
(II Thessalonians 1:11)

Weekly Memory Verse
   "I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True".
(Revelation 19:11)


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