English Puritan Church leader, Richard Baxter once said, “This life was not intended to be the place of our perfection, but the preparation for it.” Let’s be honest, life would be much easier if we had the perfect spouse, children, parents, in-laws, jobs etc. The candid reality is that no one is perfect. We are all works in progress , flawed, and Romans 3:23 reminds us that, “All have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory [perfection]! Paul formerly known as Saul was one of the best persecutors of the early church. But you would think post his conversion and transformation that his latter life would be nothing short of perfect. He is responsible for writing two-thirds of the New Testament Gospel but yet check out his conviction in Philippians 3:12 (CEV), “I have not yet reached my goal, and I am not perfect. But Christ has taken hold of me. So I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize.” Paul was focused on pursuing the prize, not being the prize. He was running a race and he knew that seeking the goal protected the cause of Christ from criticism and reproach. When we aspire to live a godly life and pursue the goal (like Paul and countless others), our life becomes more in tuned and consistent with the character of Christ and the character He upholds in Scripture. At the end of the day, the prize is knowing Christ and as recipients of the prize our response is to make Him known!
Pray with me:
Father, we approach your throne room of grace beaten, battered, and flawed. We know that you are actively aware of every imperfection in us. Henceforth we pray that you dispense in us a fresh level of determination and commitment so that we continue to run this race, focused, motivated with maximum effort, dependent on Your resources for those times we fall short of tour perfected glory! Help us to be consistent in the Word and prayer, following a pattern that we might be like Christ, as much like Him as we will be in Your flawless presence, in Jesus’ life resurrecting, transforming, and conforming name, Amen.