Christianity is not a religion, it is a relationship - a personal, intimate, and continual kinship with Jesus.
Being a Christian begins with believing that Jesus Christ died for us and accepting Him as our Lord and Savior.
Being a true Christian cannot be just a claim. It's about living a life daily that recognizes and depends on God’s grace and mercy. It’s about growing to know more of Him daily. Christianity is about understanding that we won't get everything right through our own efforts. It’s about recognizing that the Holy Spirit is at work within us. We learn to repent for our sins and obey His lead.
Romans 6:1-4 tells us, "What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.”
So how do we walk daily as a Christian?
1. Make quality personal time with God.
Being a Christian does not mean we simply go to church on Sundays and remain the same person on weekdays. It is an everyday walk with Christ. Sunday is not the only day we hear from the Lord. We do need to take time to talk to God on a personal level and reflect on His words.
Joshua 1:8 says, "Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful."
As we talk and pray to God, it is also good to try and listen for His voice. The best way to hear from God is by reading and hearing His divine Word. We get to hear from the Lord when we meditate on His word. If you want to know why God's Word is powerful, then read it. This way, you will find out more about God and grow in the knowledge of Him, His ways, and His love for us. As we grow in our relationship with the Lord, the Holy Spirit helps us develop that desire to do the Lord's will and flee from the things that break His heart.
2. Be a living reflection of God's love.
There are ample opportunities to minister every day. We are not just a student, or a professional, or an entrepreneur. We enjoy a relationship with the Lord. We are His adopted children. Wherever He has placed us, we can shine for Jesus so that others may also be directed to the abundant love of God. We can be a blessing to those around us, be it our classmates, friends, our customers, our bosses, or our neighbors. We are not saved to stay silent about our faith but to share the truth about Christ and His love and serve as an example that others may also be drawn to Him.
As Christians, let us use every opportunity to point others to Christ. Be an extension of God's love in our homes, school, or workplace, as we are called to fulfill the Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20).
Let us be doers and not just hearers of the Word (James 1:22) from Sunday sermons and our daily devotions. Let us strive to be a living testimony of what we believe and profess.
Let’s try and ask ourselves these questions in whatever situation we may find ourselves:
a. Will this benefit and point others towards the love of God?
b. Does this contradict the faith that I have?
c. Would God be honored with this action and would this show Christ-likeness?
3. Have someone to whom we can be accountable.
No one can grow alone. Just like a crop doesn’t grow independently and needs the farmer to take out the weeds to support its daily nutrition, so too do we need others to help us grow. We need someone who will help us grow in our relationship with God. We need someone who will not tolerate us when we do wrong but will gracefully correct us out of love so that we may grow to be someone who aims to please the Lord God Almighty in every way.
This someone may be our parents, a classmate, or a colleague who is continuously maturing in his or her faith in Christ. As the Bible teaches in James 5:16, "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective." We all need people who will help us with our struggles and spend time to pray with us. Jesus did not promise us that life would be easy. But He did promise us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. He also provides fellow believers to lift us up and support us.
Being a part of a discipleship group or a loving church community would help us grow in our faith and guide us in our daily walk with Christ.
Come to Union Church of Manila, a Christian church in Makati, and join us in our journey of maturing in the love and power of Jesus. Visit www.unionchurch.ph to learn more.