walk in the word
6Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. 8See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. — Colossians 2:6-8
My spiritual upbringing was marvelous in so many ways, but somehow I never really understood the truth that life transformation is a moment-by-moment process. I was always taught that change was about the crisis. Many Sunday mornings the service would end and the church would sing “All to Jesus I Surrender” or “Just As I Am” — wonderful hymns, yes, but each focused on the crisis part of change. People would walk up the aisle at the end of the service and have a crisis where they promised God that they were going to change.
In the summertime, we would go to camp and have another crisis. The whole week would build to that last night where they’d have a big bonfire, and everyone would “sell out for God” and put a stick in the fire. Things would be phenomenal until the end of Labor Day weekend, and then you’d ask yourself, “Where did that go?”
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not opposed to the crisis, but I am persuaded, more than ever, that real transformation is about the process. Change is about thousands of choices that are made in the moment. Instead of sitting in church waiting for the preacher to move us in some deep way, so that we can have a crisis that’s more of a crisis than any crisis we’ve ever had before, why not make a choice to change? It’s thousands upon thousands of little choices, one at a time, one after another, that lead to real transformation.
Perhaps that’s why the most common picture of the Christian life in the New Testament is the walk. Living the Christian life successfully is a step-by-step process. When we understand that the process of change is like walking, we begin to see that all we need to focus on is the next step. Often we become discouraged in the process of change, because a lifetime of battling sin and seeking victory seems so overwhelming. If we are ever going to walk with Christ and be the people that God wants us to be, our focus has to be the next step–just that, and nothing else. This truth has brought me so much freedom, and it can do the same for you. Why not lay down the burden of a lifetime of transformation, and instead, pick up this next moment for Him.
— James MacDonald
Prayer: Father, thank You for the reminder that this life is just about learning to walk with You, step by step. Forgive me when I get overwhelmed because I focus on things I shouldn’t — things I’m not supposed to focus on just yet. Help me keep my focus on You, and the process of taking the next step, and nothing else. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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