Daily Thoughts : March 18th
Phil 3:14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Please note that Paul is not saying that he is being called home to heaven, a wrong assumption often made about this verse. It is all about drive and purpose. When Paul says, “I press on” he is saying that he will not be put off by distractions or by hindrances or difficulties, or call them what you will! Paul has got a goal in mind, something to strive for. He sees this goal as a prize, something to be coveted, something to feel good about, a real achievement. This prize that he is aiming for is ultimately that Jesus “will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body”; that is what is going to happen when he reaches heaven.
But the phrase “called me heavenward” indicates a process that is taking place before we go to heaven. When Paul ‘presses on' it is something he does now. Actually he's talking about his attitude to what is happening now. His goal and his prize this side of heaven is to do all he can so that when he gets to heaven he will know he has achieved the fullness of his calling while on earth.
That is the challenge here. God has a plan for our lives but He wants our cooperation and that involves us ‘pressing on' so that we become what God wants us to become this side of heaven and we do what He wants us to do and we achieve what He wants us to achieve while we are still here on the earth. So our final question to ask ourselves is, am I becoming this and am I doing this?
But this raises the challenge in us, do I see potential for change in my life, do I think it is possible for God to make me more than what I am today? These are real questions, I believe, that are pertinent to the church today, because it is so easy to settle in what we are and not to expect change, not look for growth and development in my life, not look for greater opportunities for the Lord to use me. No, Paul 'pressed on' and that meant movement and change. Let's ask for it, look for it, and embrace it.
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