As Christians we are called to set our minds on the things above and not be focused and driven to the things of this earth. We are to store up our treasures in heaven and to be transformed by the renewing of our minds.
What then are we to do once we have accepted Jesus into our hearts? is that all there is? His work on the cross is “finished”, He has bought back our souls, provided our redemption so that we may have eternal life with Him, so that forgiveness of our sins is available to all who call on His name. That is very good news.
But is that it? Is that the end of our part in this relationship with Christ, for that is what Christianity is, it is a religion based on a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, with God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. The Bible instructs us to call upon the name of the Lord and you shall be saved Romans 10:13. This is just the beginning of a beautiful friendship. The next steps in the progression of getting to know the Lord — confess your sins and then, repent, turn from those sinful ways no matter how big or small you and I think they may be.
What next? Is that all? Do we then go on our merry way? I am of the mindset that although Christ’s work on the cross is “finished” we still have some work of our own to do.
They will know you by your fruit – Matthew 7:16 — Our fruit, our outpouring of goodness which is the result of our faith and love of God. Fruit requires labor and time to produce. It would seem then that we need to get busy; being charitable, merciful, reserving judgement but discerning justly and fairly, abstaining from gossip, honoring our parents, being a cheerful giver, showing Christ’s love to others, being forgiving as we have been forgiven. We should be getting to know God by reading His Word, offering our worship and praise, using the word of God for teaching and instruction and of course — The Great Commission, we are to be a part of that good work in Matthew 28:16-20. The early disciples didn’t rest on their laurels after Christ’s resurrection and ascension — they got busy, they went to work.
Should we be a part of what seems to be a growing “It’s all about me” Christianity movement? — No, I dare to suggest that we are the workers, the spreaders of joy, the bearer of the Good News. We are the carriers of the torch which has been passed to us through the centuries by the early church. What a blessing to continue this tradition in our Catholic Church. We are to do unto others as we would have others do unto us and to not become weary in doing good.
For me, I do not personally think that God is concerned with our immediate personal comfort because sometimes this life is not comfortable, the cross was not comfortable yet it is our comfort — yes He cares for us, He hears our prayers and yes He is the giver of all good things but let us not put things before our love for Him. The first and greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength. Yes I have been blessed with a wonderful husband, beautiful children, a family and home, a job that bring me great joy and I have the necessities and some of the enjoyments of this earthly life. But I remind myself that words such as: posh, luxurious, extravagant, excessive are not found in the beatitudes. I am blessed by God in order to be a blessing, whether it is by offering my overflow to the needy or my strong and healthy able body to the work and service of the needy.
What then is to be the mindset of Christians and followers of Jesus Christ? Remind ourselves — be mindful — be mindful of the Acts of the Apostles and remember what Jesus did, how He lived, how He treated others and how He honored God the Father. For myself and my Catholic friends and readers the lives of the saints are role models for Christian living. They do not take the place of Jesus, they point the way to Him for are not all believers called “saints?” Look to the exemplary lives they lived and the mindset they held dear.
And do not hate this world, God loves this world, He sent His Son to die for this world but be the light that by which others may see Jesus in this world, through your life, through your mindset and through mine.