Have you ever thought God owes me ?
1 Peter 1:14-16 has been hitting me and those near me so hard that I feel like I could write about it for a few weeks! I’m thankful that the Spirit is pushing this so hard in my life and pray that I will continue to be open to God’s will.
Some of you out there are very righteous people. Not self-righteous, but righteous. Your heart truly seeks God; God’s word plus His Spirit lead you to a righteous life.
You don’t ask for much. You ask on behalf of others: help them get that job, heal them by your power, bring them to a saving knowledge of Your son. For yourself, you don’t pray for wordly things: you pray to grow deeper, gain wisdom, want what God wants.
So when that one little thing comes along that you’re really passionate about or that one big thing is taken away, it’s tempting to think, What!? God owes me! I’ve lived a righteous life. I always seek Him! Why me!?
But this is not Biblical. The Bible doesn’t say, Be righteous, and then God owes you. Live a sacrificial life, and God will make sure you get that one thing you want.
Sounds kinda nice, huh?
We don’t live a righteous life and then get served by God.
Holy God served us first and calls us to a life of holiness.
As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one’s deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile, knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God. (1 Peter 1:14-21, ESV)
I’m learning this with my children. Just because I try to live my life for God and to serve His people, it doesn’t mean that my kids will know Jesus. It doesn’t mean that my children will choose to love people. I certainly can’t just coast. My flesh wants to abdicate their care on someone else, and yet God knew all that about me and still put His very own Son in my judgment place.
And I want – I long – to be like Him.
Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4, ESV)
Lord, align my heart with yours so that I want what you want. Thank you for showing me that I owe you my very life, but you’ve given me grace so that I do not live out of fear or guilt. But in freedom, I hold out my children, my marriage, my failures, and my flesh. Take them and refine them.