“I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me; and the life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave Himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)
The Christian life is challenging to be sure, and Jesus told us in Luke 9:23 that we must “die to self to live for God”. This seemingly contrary statement simply means we must die to self-rule and self-focus in order to experience the life of God put into us by the Holy Spirit. We cannot be the ruler of our soul and say that God is also at the same time. Someone must yield, and that someone is us! We must choose to declare, “Your will be done God, not mine!”. For this to occur, we must choose daily to deny ourselves so that God can be in charge of our heart, mind, decisions, attitudes, and of course, our actions. To be able to find God’s will and choose it, we must spend time each day reading His Word to learn truth and praying to let Him direct us, but also worshiping with the Body of Christ and obeying what He tells us to do.
To make this all the more difficult, we live in a “selfie world”. Now don’t get me wrong, I am like everyone else who is all for taking a group picture with family and friends to remember great times and travels together. Even though I am not much on Facebook personally, posting things like trips and times together are great ways to keep up with with friends and family. What I am concerned about is the incredible amount of photos people post of just themselves and every intricate detail of their life or body for everyone to see. I am not sure if this is simply a reflection of where we are as a world now, or if this practice is helping increase the fascination with “self” that the world, flesh and the devil readily promote. Back in my younger days, when dinosaurs roamed the earth and we traveled by covered wagons, to spend so much time taking pictures of yourself and wanting everyone to look at them would have been considered extreme narcissism. Much has changed in the last generations. As Christians, we must take serious stock of our lives and then look at scripture where Jesus told us to “lose our life to find it”. (Matthew 10:39) Is our mind and energy set on knowing and pleasing Christ in a greater way each day, or are we all caught up on “self” looking for that next great “selfie” we can take and show off to the world of how attractive, smart and successful we are? Who are we living for, and who is living within us, to make our life count for eternity? Good questions we each need to ask ourselves!
Pastor Gary Houdek