Thursday, January 30, 2014

How's Your Race Going?

Last night in church, we were asked the question of what do you want to hear when you enter the gates of Heaven and meet Jesus. Do you want to hear the words, "Well done good and faithful servant!" or "Just done?"

Pretty powerful statement when you think about it. All believers based on the gift of grace will enter the gates of Heaven but what else do you have to follow that up with?

"This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile ,for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." ~ Romans 3:22-24

The reference to Jew and Gentile refer to all of us living on earth, God's chosen people and everyone else, are referred to as Gentile's.

We will all be judged by God, but those of us as believers will not have to face the great white throne judgment but our acts of service as believers will be passed through the fire to see if our motives were along with Gods or for our own glory.

"By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw,their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames." ~ 1 Corinthians 3: 10-15 

Now don't go confusing this statement with thinking you have to do certain things to earn you way into Heaven, it's not about that, but more along the lines of what are you doing with your time you have left here on earth to share the word of your testimony in what God has done for your life? How are you acting like a light pointing people to Him? When people look at your life, do they see a reflection of Jesus in your life?

If not, perhaps it might require a further evaluation into your heart, your spiritual heart. The Bible speaks that we will all be known by the type of fruit we bear, what are you producing? Is there evidence of the fruit of the Spirit in your life? Can you point people to God? If someone asked you a question, would you know where to find it in the Bible and not just offer them your perspective on things?

“Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him. But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken. For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words you will be condemned.”~ Matthew 12: 33-37

Perhaps we are standing for Jesus but are we growing in Christ as well? We can only move in two directions forward or backwards. Standing where we are currently is not a motion. Which direction are you headed??

Can you look back at your life and see some periods of a growth in your faith?

Hard questions sometimes require a hard approach to dig deeper into our spiritual walk to see where our hearts are.

I don't know about you, but I don't just want to show up to the party in heaven, I want to have a gift in hand to give to Jesus to thank Him for all He has done for me in my life. We, as believers are supposed to be working in His ministry to make a difference, to work on building our rewards in heaven where nothing can destroy them.

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal." ~ Matthew 6: 19-20

I don't know about you but if you have ever been invited to a party, it feels somewhat odd if you don't bring a gift. I want something to be able to give Jesus even though He doesn't want or expect anything from us. I want to be able to give Him something when I show up for the ultimate party in heaven! I want to thank Him for all He has done for me to make a significant impact in my life.

So how is your race going? Hopefully you are heading in the right direction. You are pushing on for the prize like a runner in a race! Working toward that finish line where we will hear the words we want to hear, His lord said to him, "‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’" ~ Matthew 25:21 (NKJV)

1 comment:

Sharon said...

Praise the Lord, I do see growth in my spiritual journey! And it is all being accomplished by His transforming work in my life.

I was reminded of this Scripture:

"For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him." (Philippians 2:13, NLT)

Yes, only HE can accomplish the refinement that I so desire. Even if it hurts, the growing pains are worth it for the reward of a deeper relationship with Him.

I want that resounding statement when I see Him face-to-face: "Well done, good and faithful servant."