It certainly behooves a Christian to think long and hard on the manner in which he or she lives his or her life. “What exactly ARE my priorities?” “How now shall I live seeing that I’ve turned from sin and self and placed my faith in Christ?” “What really is the MAIN THING to which I want to devote my passion and energies?”
If such questions are meaningless to someone who has supposedly become a Christian, then he or she needs to examine the condition of his or her heart. Consider the work of heaven effected in you as the righteousness of Christ is credited to your life! “…If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation…. God made Him Who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God. As God's fellow workers we urge you not to receive God's grace in vain” (2 Corinthians 5:17-18,21 - 6:1).
Frankly, the signs of the times suggest that His grace and goodness towards us as Christians have had little impact on how we live. Wherein His love and power do not change priorities, habits and attitudes (and self and sin still reign in us), His grace bestowed upon us has proven vain indeed… vain in securing for the Kingdom of God the domain of our hearts… vain in opening up the territory of our lives and yielding fertile soil for the growing of spiritual fruit… and vain in allowing us even to come into the place where we may be most blessed by the King of glory.
“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins” (2 Peter 1:5-9).
Making every effort to live a life that is going to count in eternity means (dare I say it?) letting go of some things in order to pursue the “main thing”. The main thing? Yes… a close walk with God. “Seek FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness and (all your needs will be met)” (Matthew 6:33). “(Jesus said), ‘“Love the Lord your God with ALL your heart and with ALL your soul and with ALL your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment” (Matthew 22:37-38). “Trust in the LORD with ALL your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in ALL your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Let your love for God be manifested in how you plan your life. Do hobbies take precedence over service to your Lord? Does sleeping in on Sunday cancel your joining with other Believers in offering worship to the Holy One? Do ballgames come before your serving in God’s work? Does television preempt your private time in prayer and in reading His Word?
If any of these things are true, “make every effort” to reorder your life and place yourself on the altar of His love. Based on all appearances, the argument can be made that the Church is anemic – lacking in vitality, power and conviction. If this is so, it is merely because God’s own people hold back and let other things come before the “main thing.” Don’t let other things depose God’s place on the throne of your life. Even “good” things must be sacrificed in our choices if they must be had at the expense of the “best thing of all”.
“Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10-11).