Steadfast to follow Christ
By Robert Schaetzle Sr.
There is much to following our Lord as measured by faith. When we come to receive Jesus as our Savior, we’ve only begun, in our faith walk, what it is to be under His power and authority.
Our lives God created for us, to rest in His purpose, and learn what all of life is, within the context of His design for us, not for ourselves. We’re to find and receive the ‘abundant life’ intended for us. Life described to us through revelation of His all inspired word, and learning obedience to the prompting of His Holy Spirit.
With that pretext in mind I want to share grace given to us, by following Christ’s example.
This most precious love offering should be for us to want to live ‘in Him’, but it’s so often never fully understood, or recognized.
We, who call ourselves Christians, are never fully cognizant of the depth of the riches of our inheritance, to be called children of God.
As we would learn to dedicate each day to Him, not only for His honor, but in following Christ’s example, we’ll discover abundance of wealth in learning to lean on Him. I’ve found over the years a greater passion of His inspired word is the source of discovering all of life. To separate ourselves from human worldly thinking as it were, and recognize Christ with each new day.
Whether we’re brand new in the lord, or even in the senior years of walking in Him, there are still riches waiting for us that the Father wants for us to have and hold on to.
Romans 15:4-6 says, ‘For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that by steadfastness and by encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope. May the God of steadfastness and encouragement grant you to live in such harmony with one another, in accord with Christ Jesus, that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.’
All too much the world looks at us Christians as weak, hypocritical, individuals, without reflecting the very presence and power of God. In many instances they’re correct, because they don’t see Christ living in us. Why, because we’re not taking hold of Jesus by faith in purpose, in power through His word.
What Joshua told the people of Israel is just as applicable for us today when he instructed them, “This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouths, but you shall meditate on it day and night that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success.” Joshua 1:8 [RSV]
The point being, that as I have His word in my heart, there have been many times in my growing and learning, that strength and vision from His word brought confidence and rest, rather than anxiety.
2 Corinthians 5:7-10, ‘For we walk by faith not by sight. We are of good courage and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away we make it our aim to please Him.
For sure, with the confident presence of His leading, one can truly feel more at home in the lord and less troubled by “Burdens of the Hour” of things going on in our world around us.
Consider if you would, what it means to dedicate each new day to the Lord, to rest upon His resources, being more mindful of the presence of His Holy Spirit, looking to His Strength. Isaiah 41:10 reveals that very truth when he says, “Fear not, for I am with you, be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand.”
As I’ve learned to dedicate each day to our Lord, I remind myself that  I am ‘in Christ’ and I’m abiding ‘in Him’ to rest upon His resources.  That I should not desire to turn back to the worldly human reasoning that never really fulfills, but rather, to rest in only what the genuine fruit of the Spirit can fulfill.
The good that we receive, we’re storing up for treasures in heaven, so that one day when we give accountability to our Lord for walking by faith, we might receive a “Well done good and faithful servant.”
This is reinforced in 2 Corinthians 5:15-17, ‘And He died for all, that those who live might live no longer live to themselves but for Him who for their sake died and was raised. From now on, therefore, we regard no one from a human point of view; even though we once regarded Christ from a human point of view, we regard him thus no longer. Therefore, if any one is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come.’
My hope is we’ll all develop this mindset of being a ‘New Creature in Christ.’ I pray this for my family, to witness more of Christ in their own lives. Each home that wears the title Christian ought to be purposing to be new in Christ with each new day, walking with strength renewed, not for themselves, but rather, to reflect His presence with each breath we take.
James 1:12 shares, ‘Blessed is the man who endures trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life which God has promised to those love Him.’
For sure, it’s the test of endurance that proves our faith. Whether or not, we’re resting in the presence of His Spirit and power, to see us through all the circumstances of life.
James 1:25 exemplifies why I love reading God’s Word each day and also, to memorize and meditate upon His promises, ‘But he who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, [emphasis mine] being no hearer that forgets but a doer that acts, he shall be blessed in his doing.’
As we are given strength more to endure through life’s circumstances, we’ll begin to experience the wealth of being an heir in the Kingdom of God.
The more we come to rest in Him and pursue the passion for obedience to His word, the greater our abundance of wealth of His love and favor upon our lives.
I’ve gained much over the years to recognize the value of His discipline. It is for His discipline even as a father would discipline His children because of his love for him or her, so too, does our Father in Heaven discipline each one of us, that we gain greater endurance through trials that come our way. His discipline actually builds greater courage if we recognize it as building up and not necessarily as being punitive.
The promises and blessing that come through His correction bring out the ‘Abundant Life’ resulting in our persevering. We’ve so much more to gain, and the temporal things of the world become so much less important to us.
Seeking Him First
God promises that in Mathew 6:33 “To seek first [my emphasis] His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these other things will be given to you.” They will be provided for. Obviously, we need food, clothing and substance of what our physical body requires, but greater still, we ought to be seeking the spiritual things above, where Christ is, seated at the Fathers right hand. The more we learn surrender to do this, the greater the blessing of His grace and riches from above.
Understanding God’s Grace
Grace like faith, is something we don’t physically get a handle on, so to speak, but we do witness the result of what grace does for us. We see results of Divine intervention and power to carry us along life’s path.
Even as our salvation is a gift of God, so too, is grace given to us. We can’t earn it, or in any manner work our way to acquire what only God measures out for our own welfare.
John 1:14 is one of few verses in the bible I feel, that expound, and truly define, and measure the fullness of grace.
“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.”
To be steadfast in God is to recognize the fullness of the Father’s love to us in Jesus, full of grace for us. John the Baptist said it best. ‘We must learn to decrease in order for Him to increase!’ When we’re confident of our abiding ‘in Him,’ we’ll develop a much a greater perception to experiencing God’s wonderful grace. Our walk of being steadfast in Christ will bring new and wonderful revelations of God’s presence with each new day.