Am I Determined?
Continuing from last Thursday (http://shaunawallace.blogspot.com/2012/09/just-jesus.html), anticipation overwhelms me as I long to convey the magnitude of God’s deliverance. The immediate relief He brought to my insecure mind when I read Paul’s words in I Corinthians 2:2: “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.” The practical application I hope will bring relief to you in whatever area you may be struggling.
Let’s start by looking at the meaning of know in the Greek. It means “to perceive with any of the senses; to notice, discern, and discover; to turn the eyes, mind, attention to, or observe; to inspect or examine; to look at and behold; to experience; to have an interview with; to get knowledge of and understand; to have regard for one or cherish”(Strong's 1492 www.blueletterbible.com).
So to know Jesus and Him crucified means to perceive, notice, examine, experience, get knowledge of, and cherish Jesus in order that our eyes, mind, and attention are on Jesus ONLY in every circumstance and relationship. It’s making a purposeful decision to make known the cross of Christ in everything we do. It’s seeing things as Jesus sees them, examining things according to how Jesus would examine them, “interviewing” Jesus – in prayer and through His word – and responding as Jesus would respond.
In every area of my life, I am beginning to ask myself:
Am I determined to not know anything except Jesus and Him crucified in this area or relationship? Am I making known the cross of Jesus?
With my friendships, am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about whether or not we’re being included in weekend gatherings and dinners out, parties or trips or other activities and events?
With my book, am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about whether or not people will or won’t buy my book, read my blog, ask me only questions I know how to answer well?
With my body – whether it’s my skin, my size and shape, what I eat, what I wear, or whether I exercise – am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about whether or not I’m perfect on the outside?
With my family and my extended family, am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about their approval and whether or not I’m the perfect wife, mother, sister, daughter, daughter-in-law, etc.?
With my clothing and my home, am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about whether or not I wear the latest and greatest most fashionable clothes or have a magazine-worthy house?
With my activities and the things to which I commit my children, am I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, or am I concerned about whether or not my kids are doing the right things to be accepted by the right people in order to have the right future?
When there’s chaos, insecurity, worry, over-commitment, difficult relationships, a thorn in your side – ask yourself: Am I determined to know nothing but Jesus and Him crucified?
By simply asking myself this question, the slate of my heart and mind is available for God to pen His will. There’s room to receive answers and guidance from Him. It has caused me to say no, to say yes, to stay the course, to change course abruptly, to set aside what I want for another’s needs, to do the right thing even when it’s hard.
To determine to know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified is to live the crucified life Paul talks about in Galatians 2:20:
I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
It is for Christ to live in us.
That’s great! But how does that happen? What does the crucified life look like?
We have only to look at Jesus. Join me Thursday as we do just that.
Jesus, You are our perfect model. You are all we need to know to live the crucified life that leads to joy and peace. Lead us there as we become more wholly Yours today.