Wednesday, January 25, 2012
A Manner Worthy
"For this reason also, since the day we heard of it,
we have not ceased to pray for you
and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will
in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,
so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord,
to please Him in all respects,
bearing fruit in every good work
and increasing in the knowledge of God;
strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might,
for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience;
joyously giving thanks to the Father,
who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light."
Healthy things grow.
Healthy babies grow into children, who grow into young adults, who grow into adults, who create healthy babies.
So not only do healthy things grow but they also reproduce themselves.
In these four verses, Paul give an encouraging greeting to the young church at Colossae, quickly explaining to them the reason they need to grow in spiritual wisdom and understanding - so that they will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.
We cannot save ourselves but once we lay our lives at the feet of our Savior, we can live a life that is worthy of the Lord - this is the sanctification process of growth that every believer is engaged in. We all should be growing. If we're not growing in our knowledge of the Lord and His will, something is wrong, because healthy things grow and reproduce themselves.
Then Paul, in encouraging them to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, goes on to list out what that manner looks like:
1. To please Him in all respects
2. To bear fruit in every good work
3. To continue to increase in our knowledge of Him
4. To be strengthened in His power
5. To be steadfast and patient
6. To be joyfully thankful
And then he tells us why we should live this way - because Jesus has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints - He's traded identities with us and we now receive His inheritance.
So let's walk in a manner that is worthy of our Savior.
Wow. Sounds easy, right? But growth takes effort.
Take a plant that has just sprouted and set it on a shelf in a dark closet. What will happen? It's dead in a few days. But give it light, water it regularly, keep the weeds away and what happens? It grows.
Take a baby and set it on that same shelf in the dark closet. Okay, don't do that. You get the point - it takes great care and love to grow a baby. (That looks kind of funny written out, but you get what I mean.)
If you are going to grow spiritually, it takes work. You need to grow in your knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding - in other words, you need to grow in your knowledge of God and that only comes from concentrated time in His Word. This is His revelation of Himself - this is your nutrition that causes growth. You start with milk and soon you'll find you're on soft fruits and veggies. Then solids. Then they day comes that you find yourself chewing on the meat of the Word - growth! Wonderful, life-changing growth!
Our goal as believers should be to please the Lord in all respects. When we do that, the other things (bearing fruit, increasing in knowledge, having joy and patience, etc.) fall into place because that's all a part of pleasing Him.
Just my thought for the day - in these four little verses we can all find our calling and our purpose in life...
So let's walk in a manner worthy of our Savior.
(and I didn't even get to the call to reproduce ourselves...you can think on that one yourself...)