“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” – Colossians 3:2-4
Living for Christ puts Christ at the center of our life
It’s only as we learn to die to self that we begin to live for Christ.
Human nature seeks everything for itself and nothing for Christ. But when you become a Christian, you’re no longer the center of your life, Christ is.
Life has a new center, a new direction. Christ comes first. His plan for our lives replaces our own. It’s no longer what we would like to do but what the Lord wants us to do. We now say “Not my will, but Your will, be done.”
Dying to self and growing in Christ — this is what Christian living is all about.
While we’re thinking how this or that will affect us, whether it will benefit us to make this sacrifice or that self-denial; while we are consulting our own ease, our own comfort, our own interest or advantage in any form, we have not yet learned fully what the love of Christ means.
Living for Christ leads to peace
When Christ is small and self is large we cannot be deeply restful. Everything annoys us. We grow impatient of anything that breaks our comfort. We grieve over little trials. We resent whatever would hinder or oppose us.
But when self decreases and Christ increases then a life of friction and worry is changed into a life quietness and peace. When the glory of Christ streams over this little, cramped, fretted, broken life of ours peace comes, and the love of Christ brightens every spot and sweetens all bitterness. Trials are easy to bear when self is small and Christ is large.
God really thinks about our lives and has a purpose of His own for them, a place He would have us fill, a work He would have us do. Surely if God cares enough for us to make a plan for our life, it must be better than any plan of ours could be!
How do we die to Self? (From Colossians 3:5-9)
“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.”
How do we Live for Christ? (From Colossians 3:12-17)
“As God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
– J. R. Miller