Monday, April 08, 2013

Living The Good Life

Loving what the world has to offer is contrary to being in love with God.

1 Peter 3:8-12  Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.

9 Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t retaliate with insults when people insult you. Instead, pay them back with a blessing. That is what God has called you to do, and he will bless you for it.  

10 For the Scriptures say, "If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies.  11  Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it.  12  The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and His ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns His face against those who do evil."

Just about everybody that you know is trying to live the good life, some people like to say that they are "living the dream," there is a lot of effort made everyday to make the day that you have the best it can be. Too bad that effort isn't being put into something that will last.

This world is full of ideas about what the good life looks like and how to achieve it. Everywhere you look you see plenty of ideas on how to make it happen. The television, magazines, radio are full of programs that want to help you know what the good life looks like and the advertisers are ready to sell you all of the stuff that is required to make it happen. They feel like they are doing you a favor by letting you know how to be happy.

Let's be honest, the world has some pretty cool toys but loving what the world has to offer is contrary to being in love with God. If anybody should have been happy with the world's toys it should have been King Solomon. At first he was so in love with God that he didn't desire the world and all of it's riches and toys and so it was very commendable when he asked God for wisdom instead of riches. Too bad he left his first love and allowed the things that the world has to offer to get in the way.
1 Peter 4:1-5 So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin. 2 You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God.

3 You have had enough in the past of the evil things that godless people enjoy—their immorality and lust, their feasting and drunkenness and wild parties, and their terrible worship of idols.

4 Of course, your former friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you. 5 But remember that they will have to face God, who will judge everyone, both the living and the dead.
The people that Peter is writing to do not have any of those good things that the world has to offer. They are poor and they are being persecuted and harassed for their departure from Judaism to follow Christ. Don't think that this is a problem for the rich and famous, we can all get caught up in the deception that the world has something meaningful to offer.

Loving what the world has to offer is contrary to being in love with God and loving God means that I need to love what he loves. I should be anxious to do what pleases him. I am finished with the lust of the old sinful life that I once lived, I have figured out that there isn't any long term enjoyment in those things, they only lead to heartache and sorrow.

Satan never shows you the discontentment and the eternal consequences that his plan has to offer. He tries so hard to keep it upbeat and positive but despite all of the spin the discontentment of living by the world's standards shows up when we loose our joy and get angry, bitterness and resentment creep in and we overindulge.
1 Peter 2:11 Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls.
This is not my home and the philosophies of this world are not acceptable to me as a follower of Christ. My happiness is not found in the places that this world is telling everybody to look. My happiness is found in living for the one that changed my life and gave me the riches of eternity spend with him.

Thank you Lord for changing my life here on earth and for changing my eternal destiny!