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Is your life as God intended it to be?

 

Ken Walker

August 2003

Do you think your life is as God intended it to be? Have you ever pondered that question in the light of how our lives actually seem to be? How did God really intend our lives to be? Was it to be such a struggle? Were not children meant to bring joy into our lives? Instead they seem to test us beyond our endurance. Was life as we experience it how God intended the people of His creation to live? Are our human relationships such that we are left alone, and wonder what everything is all about? Even questions such as, "Is there really a God?" are signs of thoughtful contemplation. Anyone not believing there is a God is then wondering how this accident of life happened and what fool began it all. And if we believe that there is a God, then, "God, what are you doing about all this? Why aren't you doing something more to help me?"

I believe most people think along these lines at some time, so may I address this question? God not only intended it to be far different, but it still can be far different and more in keeping with the peace in life we all strive for. May I explain?

But first, a thoughtful look at a typical family. As parents and now grandparents, we have watched our kids grow up, get married and have children. Wives pour themselves out for their kids and their husbands, often manning the home fort alone for 12 hours a day, whilst the husband sweats out a livelihood. We see them both put in a valiant effort. They are often quite incredible in their resolve. Faultless! All the time! 100%. Although they work well together, life is still this one gigantic struggle. Have you ever wondered why? Some have even "tried" Christianity when they were younger and even experienced great joy for a time.

Some, even if they did "try" God, did not always go on with Him. They may have wondered why. However, I believe that there are also some reasons (about which they would have known little) why they gave up on God. If that happened, then their lack of godly relationship may have been none of their fault. Whose fault is it then that some people either fall away from God or don't connect with Him correctly in the first place? It can be really hard to track back. Many don't have the family upbringing or Christian teaching. They could not choose their parents and churches they attended did always get it right either. I know from the experience of many.

In the meantime, the catch is that people get so used to this life they live, they consider whatever they have to be normal. Anything better is never contemplated. Many in the world seem blinded to the fact that Jesus said He came to bring us fullness of life on earth. How could there be anything better than that? So they just continue and do the best they can, sometimes failing and always feeling like there should be something more.

So what has gone wrong in the past that stopped many from having the truth that would set them free from the awful bondages that have snared all humans into tangles that can't be fixed without God's intervention. After all, it is now clear to me and many others that the fullness of the truth that He provides, when understood and implemented in our lives, will actually set us free to live as God intended. So what did God intend and how do we all get to live it? That is the question that leads into a truth that is both simple and mind boggling in its capacity to change life for a better that might seem impossible. Here it is in a nutshell.

"Christianity is the life of Christ operating within the believer – dwelling in him or her – and flowing out from them, in all the details of everyday life. This life of Christ dwelling in the believer is reproduced there by the power of the Holy Spirit in every aspect of the believer's daily life."

Now I don't know what they told you when you made your commitment to Christ, but it might have been something like that. They might have said something like, you have now given your life to Christ, or you are saved, or now you are going to heaven – or all of those perhaps. Those who preach and teach in churches normally know pretty well that the blood of Christ actually pays the price for your sins, and gets you saved, forgiven and into heaven when you die. Your past sinful life is forgiven and you are definitely going to make it to heaven. Past and future are assured. All true! But notice the gap in the middle. What about now? What about present life on earth?

However, those with the responsibility for teaching these things, in many cases (in my experience) have only told us half the story – and this is not their fault either, for they were never taught or told the whole story either. So forget about blaming anyone – you will finish up back at Adam and Eve anyway. The thing to ask and find out about is this. What is the other part of the gospel, the bit that helps me live on this earth, as distinct from the part already mentioned (about your past being forgiven and your eternal future assured). The question is, How do I find a life here on earth that is what God intended it to be?

Before I get onto that please allow me an important diversion. If you could, you would probably want to question me. "You are asserting that you know something that others don't. How come? Why you? How come you got to find out this mystery of life when I have never heard it before? So what I am now going to say is a very short answer to those questions. Here it is.

"Although I had was brought up in a Christian church and had some idea about what was what, I lost or forgot most of it in my struggles with life – as many do today. I pretty much ignored God for a long time, just searching for Him intermittently. Then when I really bombed out in life He sort of let me go – as He is prone to do, until I had suffered enough to come screaming back to Him at a great rate. Then, when I acknowledged that there was no one else in life that could really help me (I had tried lots of ways – mostly wrong) and I acknowledged Him as God, Creator and the only One who is able to help – He in fact changed my life. When I committed my life to Him, He did an exchange – my old useless life for His new life – a life that is empowered by the Holy Spirit. Now when this happened to me I thought I was made – and in a sense I was. I did have the Spirit of God within me.

However, that is just the beginning of the story. I was told that my past was now free from sin and that my eternal future was assured. I thought that also meant the present and used to wonder why nothing worked as I was taught it should. But it didn't. So I began a search, and although it took about 18 years to begin to find the full answer, those 18 years were not wasted as God taught me heaps of basic things which actually formed a springboard for what has come in the last four years – since 1999. Around that time, I began to see that certain things in scripture were never taught in church and I used to wonder why that was so. (the most important being that we are dead to in through the body death of Jesus Christ) That was the beginning of God answering my million questions in my search for the reality of true and full Christianity. And in the last 4 years He has revealed the beginnings of it to me, from scripture and via His Holy Spirit and some wonderful friends who have walked a similar pathway before me. I am now enjoying this walk with God, even as I still learn it and now share it with others. This mystery is living in a full knowledge that the life is Christ is now actually my actual life – my old life being sublimated to this new life. What I am saying is quite incredible – God's Spirit lives in me and I live through what He is in me. (The Bible says it – I am just repeating it)"

This is how one other person puts it. "We were made to contain the very life of Jesus. He means to live out the reality of who He is right here within the reality of who we are. He means to be our lives - the thoughts in our heads (we have the mind of Christ scripture says), the creativity in our work, the love in our hearts. He means to take on the stress and unravel the complications, so that we can move through our lives just as He did, in gentleness, simplicity and harmony."

So why me? I don't know why me. (I do know of many others too) Perhaps it was my insistent questioning that God just finally had to answer – although I don't hold up any person's self-effort as particularly important. God is God and He acts when He wants to act and not before. I don't know why I was not taught these things in my churches over the years. I do know that He eventually brought me into contact with a pastor who was taught these things as a teenager, and I was able to confirm these aspects of the full Gospel of Jesus Christ with him. God always has His ways and His people to help earnest seekers. But I do know that the mystery that was revealed to St Paul around A.D 40 is now mine also. It is the mystery that God wants every person on earth to know and live.

As I have opportunity I try to share these things with others who are also on their own search. Sometimes, and this is one of the occasions, I stick my neck out and risk initiating some consideration of the subject by a wider audience. What God offers here is the biggest and most wonderful gift that anyone could ever offer another person. It is the ultimate love gift.

You would be perhaps surprised to realize just how much this gift affects your everyday life. Every aspect of life is changed by a realization of the fullness of the life of Christ in you. When you learn a bit about it all, you will see that the gift comes directly to you via the Holy Spirit. You do not have to strive to get it – you merely have to learn a few scriptural basics, read a bit over time, ask lots of what might seem like silly questions (actually they are all profound), commit to God and wait. Day by day you will get to see just what a difference you giving up your life to Christ really makes, as you learn to have Him live your life for you. If He is running your life instead of you, you can't go wrong.

However, any gift offered has to be received, otherwise the gift that never gets taken up and is never received. Now when the gift is offered, a number of things can get in the way. You might say, "well I can't see what you are talking about" or " I haven't got time to read and study like you have" or "I sort of get it but it sounds too hard for me, or "I see you expressing universal love, but it is just not for me". Now I do not have any control over your responses. However, may I appeal to your sensitivity to spiritual things and hope and pray that the Lord will be graceful and meet you more than half way.

Ken Walker is Webmaster of Fullness of Life in Christ,