No More Excuses – Raised to New Life

I will one day stand before my Lord God (maybe it will be today) and give an account for all of my choices.  I’ll give an account for how I chose to follow Jesus Christ and allow Him to be Lord of my life.  My salvation is secure but my eternal rewards for Christ are not.

Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. (Romans 14:10-12)

I consider this moment of giving my account and I see all of my excuses.  The Lord God will ask me what return I have gained on the treasures and blessings that He bestowed on me.  Will I be the servant who doubled my Master’s property, or will I stand with empty hands because I simply buried what He has given me?  Will I be able to say that I did my best or will I stand with regret for the lost opportunities and lack of faith?

My heart desires to hear God say, “Well done good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.” (Matthew 25:21), but I fear that I have fallen short in the past.  So I consider the commands He has given us:

Deuteronomy 6: 4-9 – the greatest commandment – Love the Lord your God will all your heart, mind and soul; to diligently teach the things of God to our children…Keep all of His commandments…

Let’s just take this one thing; have I spent my life doing this?  Honestly I must confess that the answer is yes and no.  There’s been a lot of “living” for myself; a lot of “I wants”.  I think I’ve tried to walk the line of “good enough”.  Good enough for what?  I made an effort – a half-hearted one!  God desires that I give Him ALL of my heart.  I have spent more time reading books, watching TV, on Facebook and Pinterest than actually teaching my children the things of God – I certainly didn’t hit the “diligent” threshold.  I’d try and then get discouraged – start a devotional with them and then stop, take them to church (surely they can teach them better than I can right?).  We’d talk about the shows we watched on TV in light of God’s Word (sometimes), we even memorized the books of the Bible – SCORE! (not).  I’d slide back into my “old self” and have to regroup – again.  In my own power, I’m just muddling through at best.  God’s standard seems too high for me to reach.  All of my heart.  All of my mind.  Really?  And this is just one commandment!  How is that possible given all of the other distractions in life?  How is that possible given my self-centered heart?

The answer is simple – eliminate the good and fill your life with God.  Live each day with His power and strength – take up your cross daily.  Eliminate the distractions.  Eliminate the excuses, the fear, the world’s priorities, and obey only God’s will.  Choose it.  Live it.  Do it.

Lord, fill me with Your Holy Spirit.  Help me to center every moment on you; to pass all of my decisions through Your loving hands and accept and find contentment in what You have for me.  Let me not settle for “good enough” when following You.  Help me to keep striving in Your power to live a holy life that brings glory to Your name.  Let me live my life each day with no more excuses.  Help me focus on living my life for You rather than being quick to criticize the lives of others.  Let me be a blessing to others rather than a stumbling block.  Help me Lord to walk humbly with You.  Let my life be a drink offering poured out for Your glory.  Amen.

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