I have been thinking of the word ‘success’ lately. We all aspire to leave a legacy and impact. Indeed Christians are called to be different. Biblical Christianity thou is not only vision-based, competency-based, success-based or even values or character-based; it is Christ-based.
In this era of communication (as writing a devotion on the diocesan webpage), “disconnection” with Jesus may underly cause of a spiritual deficiency. We must return to the centrality of the person of Jesus Christ.
During His earthly ministry, Jesus lived in continuous union with His Father.
“Jesus gave them this answer: “Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does” . Jn 14:7-9
In the same way that Jesus lived by the indwelling life of His Father, so we are to live by the life of Jesus in us. We are to be in constant inward fellowship with Christ by His Spirit.
This establishes that true vision, competency and character that derive from the indwelling life of Christ in us and not from merely human effort or capacity.
“If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:5).
Like a body without a head, true Christian living isn’t possible without Christ being first. We can be intellectually familiar with God and the things of God, but our call is to be united with Him on a daily basis. Sadly today’s Christians teaching/understanding or expectation consists of looking more like business models of leadership or motivational “success”.
In the biblical paradigm, however, union with Christ and the cross, and dependency on the Holy Spirit are at the center. Jesus Himself is the beginning and end of all things. He is worthy of absolute pre-eminence in our lives and ministries, not second place. Apart from Him, we will never accomplish anything of lasting value. This is our way for success.
Rev. Norman Cretin