Theme of the Week: Pressing In
Bible Verse: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.” Romans 8:28-29
Scripture Reading: Hosea 6:3, 1 Thessalonians 5:17, Romans 10:17, 1 Timothy 4:7-8
How many people have a treadmill or piece of exercise equipment that is better used for hanging laundry than for exercise? It’s no secret that to get in shape, it takes hard work, dedication and consistency. You won’t get stronger by looking at the weights. You have to lift them.
It’s no different than our walk with Jesus and growing our relationship with him. Romans 8:28-29 tells us 2 things:
- We “have been called according to his purpose.” (v.28) God has a specific plan for each of us and has called us TO something for his purpose, not ours. We are part of his plan.
- We are “to be conformed to the image of his son.” (v.29) God doesn’t want to just save us; he wants us to be transformed over time into the image of Jesus, continually progressing towards Christ-like-ness.
In order to walk in the plan God has for us and truly live as image-bearers of Jesus, we must be intentional about our spiritual growth. It’s pressing into Jesus day by day, with passion, dedication and consistency. Growth won’t happen if we are lukewarm or haphazard in our approach to God. We have to be intentional and make time for God in our busy schedule.
Reading the Bible, meditating on God’s word daily, and spending quality time in prayer are the first steps to pressing in. The Bible instructs us to “pray without ceasing.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17) In other words, pray a lot and talk to God continuously, about everything. We are also instructed to meditate or think on the word day and night so that we can do everything that is written in it. This means to study it – a lot!
Active involvement at church should be a priority in our lives as should regular time of worship. “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17) When the word is ministered at church, online, by podcast or by reading it, our faith grows. Just as a muscle grows each time you exercise, we must exercise our faith and spiritual growth.
Living a life of purpose and godly impact is a lifelong journey. We won’t fully arrive until we’re finally standing in the presence of God. It’s never too late to start pressing into Jesus and allowing him to press into you each and every day. It takes effort on our part, but the fruit is well worth it in the lives we impact along the way as we grow more and more to be like Jesus. Press on toward the prize of standing before the Father one day to hear the words, “Well done.”
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