Friday, July 27, 2012

Keep Moving Forward

We often forget that our life here is a journey filled with purpose and learning. In a sense, we are never out of the classroom. Everyday Jesus is presenting us with new lessons as we slowly make progress in our goal of maturity in him. We live this life one day at a time but we live it going forward, gaining wisdom from God, energy from Jesus to keep going and with an adventurous spirit.

If life is nothing more than getting by, we have lost the point and will soon lose our way. Our goal is not some grand idea of retirement where we get to play all day. God designed us for work and we are happiest when we are busy at something, and Jesus has given us a big something to be busy at. This journey is always about steps and lessons and we need to be good students.

Apostle Paul always saw the purpose of growth and steps in the things he did. Writing to the Colossians Paul kept talking about purpose:

My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love... (Colossians 2:2)

That's a great purpose isn't it? It was always my desire to serve people, to be an encourager, someone who helped others achieve great things. But Paul sees this as only a seed. He saw encouragement and unity in love opening the door to something else, a stepping stone:

... so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding ... (v. 2)

Encouragement in Jesus and unity in love allows us to possess the full riches of complete understanding. A cheerful heart pleases God and practising God's love (not our paled version) gives us the capacity to have complete understanding and all the riches that come with it. If you are stuck in your progress you need to consider whether you have passed the kindergarten class on love. Love is the key to beginning our journey. If you are trying to serve Jesus without love you will not make any progress as you try to press forward. Unfortunately that is where many of us are stuck and we do not even possess the discernment to understand why we are not progressing.

The full riches of complete understanding is not the end of the matter. It is just another stepping stone in our moving forward in our goal of maturity in Jesus. Paul says we need this stepping stone:

... in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ... (v. 2)   

You may say "But I know Jesus". Unfortunately many of us know about Jesus but we don't know him personally. Much of the Church that worships Jesus have never had a personal encounter with him. If we had we certainly would be more passionate about serving him and fulfilling the mission. Far to0 many of us believe that once we are saved it is the end of the matter.

When a child was asked why he fell out of bed he responded "'Cause I fell asleep too close to where I got in". That describes us. There is so much more to Jesus, the Church and our life here than the cross. The cross has allowed us to enter in, to begin the journey but there is greater treasure than this. We need to grow in Jesus, to know him deeply and personally because in Jesus:

... are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. (v 3)

Life is a great journey. Each day is a stepping stone in our progress. Life is about growth, about being more than we were yesterday. Life is about getting to know Jesus, becoming mature in him, possessing all the treasures he has for us. You need to learn to love so that you can gain understanding so that you can know Jesus through whom you will gain wisdom and understanding. Jesus is our everything and this world has nothing to offer in comparison. Press on my friend, there is so much more for us to discover in Jesus.

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