We have two important things to do in life: one is to develop our potential, and the other is to make good choices. Both greatly determine the shape of our lives and the extent to which we move from where we are to where God ought us to be.
The life that Christ offers us is full of potentiality, but we need to grasp this life with both hands. Yes we are in Christ by faith, but we can grow more fully in Him. Yes the Holy Spirit has touched and influenced us, but He can more radically affect and empower us. Yes we received salvation only by grace, but we need to spiritually mature and work it out.
While the Bible said contentment is good, it also says we should only be discontented with our Spiritual growth. While the Bible said God gave us the freedom to choose, it also says that we should choose to stay in God’s will to live a full life.
To realize our potential means we need to have a holy dissatisfaction, a hunger for more, and an unwillingness to be complacent. We should continue to ask, seek, and knock. We should be contented with what we HAVE, but we should never be contented with what WE CAN BECOME. Those are two different things.
It is this desire to move forward and grow that should characterize us as Christians. We cannot all expect to be the most integrated, balanced, mature, moral, fair, determined, resilient and creative people in the world, even though some Christians are such outstanding people. But we can, in spite of inadequate background, socialization and education, realize our potential in Christ.
But realizing our potential is intimately linked to making choices. God does not choose to control us. Instead he treats us as mature sons and daughters. We have the responsibility for making our important life choices. We can choose to be mediocre, complacent, inconsistent and selfish. We can choose to be people-pleasing, conforming, and unconcerned about our society.
But we can instead choose to do the contrary and stand up strong for God. We can choose to serve God more than mammon, to put God’s will before our personal plans and ambitions, and to pepper our lives with the risks and challenges that come from responding to the gentle nudges of the Holy Spirit.
We should be known in the world by something more than our churchgoing and beliefs. We should be marked by a particular quality of life.
That quality of life is one of wholeness, but we stay humble and keep in mind that we are still broken in so many aspects of our own lives. That it’s only by God’s grace we find joy in our lives.
What should distinguish us from others, therefore, is not that we have arrived, or have it all together, but rather that we desire to grow in Christ, that we long for His kingdom to be more fully revealed through us, and are prepared to make those choices that seek to obey and serve God in our world.