Guest Post by Sibyl Joseph
Since December of 2015, when I made the decision to live for Christ, I have come to realize how important it is to stop and take stock of my personal walk with God from time to time. Self-evaluation has helped and continues to help me to know where I am at as I strive to grow in my relationship with God. This is a pragmatic step because then I know that I am armed with the fore-knowledge that regardless of the obstacles and challenges that I face, God guarantees that He will allow me to achieve greater things in the future through Him. It is very tempting to make bad decisions when things don’t go as planned, hence, the significance of truly evaluating our present situation in the light of God’s word cannot be overstated, especially when it comes in the form of God’s discipline. Hebrews 12:4-11 elaborates on the encouraging words about how God disciplines the ones He loves, and also how we must accept this discipline as an act of endearment that can produce great change in righteousness as well as peace.
Furthermore, we can become blind or even be deceived by Satan of where we think we are versus where we actually are with God, this lack of clear understanding of our position with God could lead to a lack of true change and/or transformation Romans 12:2 teaches.
I recently studied out God’s discipline in my life which lead me to Hebrews 2:1. I realized that in my walk with God I had drifted away from Biblical standards simply because I didn’t take the time to evaluate where I was at today, who I used to be in the past, and where I knew I wanted to be tomorrow. I needed to once again look at the Bible as a reflection of my own heart and accept who I had allowed myself to become, but more importantly, who I knew I wanted to imitate, Christ himself as clearly highlighted in the book of James 1:22-25
I heard a lesson the other day from one of my favorite pastors in our movement, Andrew Smellie, who leads the Nigerian church where he said (and this is not verbatim): if you can remember a time when you used to be more fired up, more faithful, more devoted, more loving, etc. then that’s a sign that you’ve drifted away. Instantly I was blown away because my answer to every question asked was “yes”, I could remember a time that I was more of all of the above.
Revelations 2:2-5 presents an excellent example of a church in the Bible that had everything perfect. Jesus says “consider the height you’ve fallen” meaning that there was a time they were on top before they fell or drifted away. Because they didn’t evaluate where they really were to see how far they had fallen behind the pecking order, Jesus held that crucial one flaw against them unless they repented.
So, where am I going with all of this? Overall, no matter what point in your walk with God that you’re at, take the time to evaluate yourself, and you can apply this to your daily life in the world as well. If you find yourself in the same position as I was, if every single one of your answers to those same questions is a “yes”, then it’s time to act! Just make the decision to repent and turn your life around. Remember the love you had for Christ at first and the fact that you can do even greater things as Jesus puts it in John 14:12. Make a plan to achieve the goals you had in the beginning for yourself and find ways to hold yourself accountable. Tell others your goals and share your plans with them so that they can help keep you on track and so that you can pay close attention in avoidance of the slow and steady drift to faithlessness.
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