A friend of mine often says that we need to live for a good funeral. None of us are going to avoid a funeral of some sort, and we get to decide how our funeral will be. I’ve been to funerals which have quite frankly been horrifically bleak, and I’ve been to funerals where a life of true worth has been remembered.
So, how do you live a life of worth? Here is the advice of the apostle Paul:
So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do. 12 Then the name of our Lord Jesus will be honoured because of the way you live, and you will be honoured along with him. This is all made possible because of the grace of our God and Lord, Jesus Christ (2 Thess 1:11-12, NLT).
Let’s look at what Paul is saying here. There’s a lot in it!
First of all he sets the standard. The standard is the call of Christ. We are to live lives worthy of his call. This is the call by which you have been called to be a follower of Jesus and a child of God.
Is it faith that prompts you as you go through life, or is it fear?
Next, we can see that we are, within ourselves, unable to live such lives of worth. It is only God’s enabling, as he gives us power, that allows us to live according to his call.
It is faith that prompts you to do the good things that God calls for. The opposite of faith is fear. Ask yourself, this very important question when you are making a decision for or against going through something in your life: Is it faith that is prompting me, or is it fear?
When we live in this way, then the name of Jesus will be honoured, and we will be honoured together with him. Notice that it isn’t that we are honoured and then we generously decide to share some of that honour with Jesus. No! How it works is that when we live lives of worth, Jesus is honoured, and then because he is honoured, we will be honoured together with him as well.
Take a moment to review your own life. Are you living today for a good funeral tomorrow? Are you living a life of worth? Are you living a life that obeys the promptings of faith and not of fear?
It’s God who gives us the power to live a life worthy of his call. It’s only possible through God’s grace. That’s the same grace that teaches us that though we may always fall short this side of eternity, the love of Christ is there to drive out fear from our lives so that we may live in the light of the freedom of his grace and acceptance. That’s how we can live more selfless lives that honour God, and when he is honoured, he will honour you.
Finally, Paul says, it is only possible for us to live lives of worth because of the grace of God. It isn’t our doing; it’s His.
Article supplied with thanks to Dr Eliezer Gonzalez.
About the Author: Dr Eli Gonzalez is the Senior Pastor of Good News Unlimited and the presenter of the Unlimited radio spots, and The Big Question.