That, however, is not the way of life you learned when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:20-22, 24 NIV)
Christians are called to seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. The Kingdom of God is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. Wherever we are laying aside the ways of the world and putting on the righteousness of Jesus Christ, there the Kingdom of God is being found and is advancing.
This process is called, “sanctification,” and it is a work of grace by God, Who, by His Word and Spirit, works within and through us to make us increasingly fit for His Kingdom. But while this is a work of God, it’s one that we must engage as well, “working out our salvation”, as Apostle Paul put it (Philippians 2:13) in fear and trembling before the Lord.
Sanctification begins in the Word of God, where, through reading, meditation, and study, we submit our minds to be formed by the worldview of Scripture, open our hearts to the searching scrutiny of the Spirit, and dedicate our consciences to following the Lord’s agenda rather than our own.
Sanctification also involves being silent before the Lord, listening for Him to prompt us to action, disclose any previously hidden sins, or guide us in specific paths of repentance and renewal.
Further reading and study from Christian writers of the past and present can also help us to learn what the righteousness of Jesus requires in our families and marriages, the stewardship of our treasure, and our lives at work, in a community, as citizens of this nation. Reading and study take time, time we’ll have to plunder from some other activity in our lives – such as watching too much television.
Seeking the Kingdom of God is serious business. But it’s also extremely rewarding, immensely satisfying, and wholly exhilarating to know that God Himself – even our King, Jesus Christ – is at work within us, willing and doing of His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).
Your best is yet to come
Teacher eTse Amable
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