There are many moving parts to the Christian life – Sunday gatherings, house church, missions outreach, community get-togethers. They are not ends in themselves. All are built around one thing, Jesus. He’s why we do what we do. He alone is our source and our supply. What we must be vigilant of is not allowing all the good things to become the main thing. If we lose Jesus amidst the good things, the things become nothings. This week’s devos are built around the power of the right one thing. “For to me, to live is Christ.” You’ll notice each devo has the exact same title and reference verse. I wrote this way on purpose. The content is different, but the point is the same. Jesus is our one thing. It’s my prayer Jesus will become, and continue to be, your one thing.
"For to me, to live is Christ . . ." Philippians 1:21
Simplicity, purity, and obedience make us look weak in the world’s eyes because we no longer rely on our possessions, privilege, and positions as our source of security. We will be subject to derision and outrage because authentic discipleship is a life of complete dependence. Injury and insult are promised to those who live only for Christ.
A Christian living in the world, and not of the world, is a sign of contradiction to the compromises many have settled for in life. But we have been set free from the stifling atmosphere of pleasing others, fitting into little patterns that dictate small agendas, and from caching temporary pleasures.
The central issue in all this is not what we do or don't do. It is narrowing our focus to one thing, it's what God is doing. He's doing a new thing bringing life into our living.
Choosing to live a counter-cultural lifestyle of purity of heart and obedience to the Gospel, will take us to the same place it took Jesus – the cross. All roads lead to Calvary. To have Jesus as our one thing overcomes ourselves, our culture, and the world.
Try this today. Say it out loud or write it down.
“For to me, to live is _________________.” Now fill in the blank.
Consider carefully what you say or write, for it’s a telling confession. If life is all about money, what happens if you lose your money? If your life is your work or health, what will it mean to be unemployed or in bad health? Defining your life by the earthly things you experience and own will always end in futility.