Friday, December 7, 2007

Sincerity...

I read this devotional yesterday... several times. I kept coming back to it. At first I knew it was confirming the part about God wanting me to be a person of my word- authentic-Christilike. And then I realized it wasn't so much about the end result of being authentic... as it was the process of "becoming" that He was showing me.

It is easy in the process of seeking Him to be distracted. Recently I have felt like God has cautioned me on being so much about Him that I am not IN Him. So- I have worked on my time spent in Him... with Him... knowing Him- on a consistent basis. And often, before He answers any of my requests, I am rewarded with His presence. (And sometimes realize that His presence was what I really needed NOT the request. Peace offsets what I think I need many times.)

Anyway, as I read this devotional I felt like God was seconding what He'd been saying to me all this time. Be authentic, sincere, genuine. Seek Me and find Me. Don't be distracted. Don't think that because you have found Me that you are finished. And don't learn ABOUT Me and not KNOW ME.

As referenced in Ephesians.. I want to be worthy of the call of God on my life. And I can't do that unless I am fixed on Him. I am easily distracted. And the Lyme can sometimes add to that. (Though, if I may sneak a praise in here- despite continual symptoms... by His grace only I haven't been consumed by my Lyme, it's symptoms, and/or the fear of what it can and may do to me in the future.) But I still find myself easily distracted. And I see my need to spend time in the Lord consistently so as not to compare myself, my growth (or lack there of), my circumstances, my family, my possessions... to any one else.

This devotional really hit home in that area. Paul may have been under house arrest in Rome but ultimately he looked past his circumstance and saw with eternal perspective. He was a prisoner of Jesus..a voluntary slave!!! He was captivated by Jesus Christ.

Oh that I would be solely captivated by Jesus Christ. That I wouldn't be distracted by all that I am not yet, what someone else may already be OR mostly that I wouldn't be more ABOUT Jesus than I am IN Jesus.

(This devotional is from my church website..)


Philippians 1:10 NAS
Be sincere…until the day of Christ.

Sincerity
The word sincere comes from a Latin word meaning “without wax.” In the original Greek it means “sun-tested.” In Bible times merchants sold very fine porcelain that was greatly valued and therefore expensive. Sometimes when it was fired in the kiln tiny cracks would appear. Dishonest merchants would smear pearly-white wax over these cracks, which would pass for unblemished porcelain – unless it was held up to the light of the sun. Honest merchants marked their wares sine cera – “without wax.” That’s a picture of genuine sincerity. No sham, no hypocrisy, no hidden cracks to be covered over. You say, “How can I live this way?” By keeping your eyes on Christ, not Christians!

Paul writes, “As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received” (Eph 4:1 NIV). When Paul wrote this he was under house arrest in Rome, yet he didn’t regard himself as a prisoner of the Romans. No, he was a prisoner of Jesus, a voluntary slave, totally in subjection to the Lord.

There’s a metaphorical meaning to this word “prisoner.” It can mean “binding as with a spell.” Paul was literally captivated by Jesus Christ! He thought and talked about nothing else. He got up every morning determined to please Him. Some days he didn’t do too well. We all have those days. But next morning he was up and at it again, more determined and more committed than ever.

Paul’s sincerity wasn’t based on keeping certain religious rules or trying to look good. It was based on a deep love relationship with Christ: “Whatever we do, it is…because Christ’s love controls us” (2Co 5:14 TLB).

1 comment:

Joanne said...

My heart wants that same love for Christ. I want to know Him deeply. There are times when I feel so connected and times when I feel such a distance.

My prayer is that I would know Him more closely. With every step of this Christian walk, may it be ever closer to Him.

Thanks for the reminder Chelle