A life sold out
“For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” ~Philippians 1:21
As a christian, I’ve long heard stories of those willing to die for Christ. It’s always been something I’ve wondered — if a gun were held to my head, would I be willing to die for Him?
I like to think, yes, I would die for Christ. Just as any christian believes.
Sometimes, though, that seems to be the part we focus on the most: dying for Christ. Of course, what happens to us after we die is pretty crucial — it’s a big part of why to follow Christ. As christians, we want to ultimately end up in Heaven with Him, instead of Hell separated from Him for eternity. It’s not the where we go that matters, but who we will be there with — God.
But lately, I’ve been wondering if I’m missing the point in some way by asking this question. Maybe the question I don’t need to ask myself is whether or not I’m willing to die for Christ. Maybe the question should be, am I willing to live for Him?
It’s been on my mind a lot, with hearing the commercials about “I’m Not Ashamed,” the movie about Rachel Joy Scott who was killed at Columbine.
Over the weekend, my husband and I rented “God’s Not Dead 2,” which I highly recommend. (Even if I kept thinking of Melissa Joan Hart’s early days as Sabrina and Jesse Metcalfe as that high school heartthrob in “John Tucker Must Die”)
Hart’s character is a history teacher who is asked about the writings of Martin Luther King Jr. and how those parallel with the teachings of Jesus in her class. She answers, quoting verses in which Jesus is speaking in the Bible. It causes mass uproar and threatens her career.
It is something that could legitimately happen to many teachers — a simple question, a simple answer, and an overreaction.
While I don’t want to give too much away, I will say that her character was given opportunities to avoid the conflict all together, to take the easy way out, and chose not to.
It brought back those thoughts to mind — while we may be asked to die for God, we are all asked to live for Him. Do we?
In Philippians 1:21, it reads, “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
So much, we focus on the “to die is gain,” because it means we get to be with our Heavenly Father. But I want to challenge you — remember the first part.
In our lives, we can have an impact on how the world sees Christ. We can be living examples. We not only can, we should. But we don’t always.
I yell at cars in traffic. I get angry and upset when things don’t go my way. I avoid making eye contact when I don’t want to be inconvenienced.
I fail constantly.
However, I’ve noticed a difference when I start my day with God. With Him as the start to my morning, it puts me in a better state.
Sure, things go wrong. Things constantly go wrong, it seems. But with God, we can get through them.
Beyond that, with God, we can help others get through the wrong things in life. We can be living examples, walking lights.
But so often, we christians fall into a bad category. We get a bad rap — sometimes earned — for being rude, for being judgmental, for being gossipy, or snobby.
That’s not a christian truly living for God. That’s not someone who has allowed God to truly take hold in their lives.
Sometimes, that christian is me. With the grace of God, it will someday not be.
I want to live a life so devoted to Him that when my time comes no one will have any doubts.
What about you?