I had a friend who had a dream of following God. For him, following God had a certain location to pursue, a certain amount of meditation to conduct, a certain amount of following God without having to follow anyone else. And then he got married. And then he wondered whether he could follow God while married. And now it looks like he’s deciding that he can’t.
It’s incredibly sad. It’s incredibly familiar.
The apostle Paul wanted to devote himself to knowing Christ. He wants to be completely identified with Christ. “This one thing I do,” he writes, forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on” toward that goal.
My friend thought that meant not having “spiritual time” – Bible reading and prayer – interrupted by people. And many of us would agree with my friend.
But right before he talks about this consuming passion of his own, Paul encourages us to the same humility of service that Christ had in living and dying. We try to rise in reputation. Jesus fell in reputation. Not so he could win points for martyrdom, like we often do. It was what he had to do.
And Paul knew that to know Jesus, to understand his work, to be with him, we need to live with and serve and be served by others.
As I am up in the middle of the night over and over with the dog, this one thing I do. As I am trying to figure out how to reload the drivers on this server, this one thing I do. As I am trying to concentrate on writing these words, this one thing I do.
It’s hard. It’s clarifying. And because we are finding Christ, it can be a delight.
Except the dog part.
Pray for me.