I Have Fought the Good Fight…but Did I Finish?

The other day, I had the privilege of eating at La Casona for the first time.  It was only the third day that the restaurant was open here in Bay City, so the place was packed.  The atmosphere was electric as people were buzzing about trying to get everyone’s orders in and right and prompt.  They did a great job, and the food was great, but this is not my critique of La Casona.

What was it like for you when you first got saved?  Do you remember it?  Do you remember what day it was?  I remember it was September 8, 1992.  I was a sophomore in High School, and it was a Sunday morning.  I had been thinking about giving my life to Christ for some time, but I had been held back by the feeling that I needed to get my life into a better place before I gave it over to God.  I finally realized that God wanted me as I was – that He wanted to help me change for the rest of my life to become more like Jesus.  I remember that the weight of the burden of responsibility for getting my life right was lifted as I gave it over to God through Jesus.

That Sunday morning, I had the honor of having my dad baptize me in the church’s baptismal pool in the Sanctuary towards the end of the services that morning.  There we were in front of almost 600 people.  When my dad dunked me, I remember a THUD and copious amounts of water as I was baptized.  When I came back up, I realized that the sins I had ever committed and ever would commit were washed away.  God would never hold my sin against me!!! It was AWESOME!  What I hadn’t realized was that the “THUD” was my head hitting the floating purification device as my dad baptized me.  Apparently, they could hear it all the way in the back of the auditorium that morning.

It didn’t matter, though.  I was saved!  I was excited! At school the next day, I was anxious to tell all my friends the good news.  As I look back, though, it wasn’t long before that feeling of exhilaration dissipated.

How about you?  How are you doing with your passion, your zeal for your own salvation?  Many Christians have events like the opening of a new restaurant.  They are excited for the first few days, weeks, or even months, but then the new wears off and the world continues to wear on, and before long you are back to living like you were before.

Satan is good at his job.

All he needs is a little complacency or apathy to be successful.  He needs us to say, “it doesn’t matter if I do this, God will forgive me.”  Then we fall back into the same old trap of sinfulness.  We stop living for God and go back to being the selfish beings we were when Satan had us in his power.

This is a wake-up call.  Where are you today?

Paul encouraged us with how he perceived his place in life with these words from Acts 20:

“However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.”

You have also been called to finish the race you so eagerly began.  I see Christians all over the place who are no different than the world.  Others I see simply say “I’ve done my time” when they are asked to volunteer or start new movements.  They act like their Christianity happened when they were younger and they are supposed to enter God’s rest before their eyes shut one final time.  Paul didn’t have this mind about him.  He was a racer with a goal to finish strong.

I’m calling you – God’s calling you – to finish strong.  Don’t wait until some young visionary comes along to bring the church to revival…start the fire in yourself and let it flame into a wildfire that consumes the world for Christ as it glorifies God  through His Spirit working in you.

If you’ve been spiritually stagnant, then today is a great day to re-commit your life to glorifying God and being different than the world.  It is a day to remember the new beginning of the Resurrection and to allow the Resurrection to bring new life into your soul.  You are never to young or old to change the world.  It begins with a change in you.

May you catch fire.  May you inwardly burn and outwardly shine with the light of the Spirit of God.  And may the community you live in be the starting place for revival as the world once again knows that God is about the business of bringing sinners to repentance for healing and forgiving those sins for freedom.  May God be glorified in you.

If you have any comments or questions about this article, please feel free to drop me a line at http://www.mrdobbs.org.  If you have a concern or prayer request or even a celebration of glory to God, let me know at jddobbs@verizon.net or at 245-1611.  God bless you all, and may you be more like Christ.

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About Johnathan Dobbs

I'm a Christian first. I'm a husband and father second. Then I am an avid outdoorsman (hiking, camping, climbing, canoeing, fishing, etc...). Right now, I have a passion for climbing and card tricks. I am the minister for the Aztec church of Christ in Aztec, NM. I look forward to meeting new people and hearing from all. View all posts by Johnathan Dobbs

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