Into Thy Word -
We are called to Virtue
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Col. 3:12-17)
God sees perfection as love, that since He loves us, we should respond in return. And that love is to seek Him, and when we seek Him we love Him, when we honor Him we seek Him. Virtue does not just happen. We do not wake up one day with it, nor do we even receive it when we become Christians. It becomes available, it is in our grasps to open, it is there for us to use, but it does not come naturally. We have to seek it out.
Thoughts on Virtue
- We acquire virtue by our faith, obedience in Christ and being persistent in Him, clothing ourselves in Him. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Is the mark of perfection and what His will is.
- Virtue is more paramount than what career we should pursue or what major to sign up for, who shall I date or marry, or what color socks should I put on. The perfection of knowing Gods will is to fallow Gods character.
The reason we were created is to be in relationship with God, yet we messed it up, He then put it back, and we still try to slip out on Him. This pursuit of His character and virtue will clue us in to the big picture and purpose for our existence, the meaning of life. It will unite His will to ours as ours melts away and gives way to perfection, to what is better and exceedingly beneficial. When we put His character at the front of our decisions, even our expectations and desires we are doing as we should. This is seek ye first myself? No, the kingdom of God. So when we are faced with embarrassment because others will not give consideration to values we count it joy for His service. Because we are in Him and not alone to ourselves.
Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: "Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me; with burnt offerings and sin offerings you were not pleased. Then I said, `Here I am--it is written about me in the scroll-- I have come to do your will, O God.' "First he said, "Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them" (although the law required them to be made). Then he said, "Here I am, I have come to do your will." He sets aside the first to establish the second. And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Heb. 10:5-10)
See John 6:35-40
· Virtue exists whether those around us acknowledge it or ridicule it.
· Our faith and life needs to feed upon our Lord.
· Our virtue comes from Him, as the will for us to seek and to be. All that we are must come from Him. Because only Christ can satisfy our deepest longings and give us purpose.
To do the will of God is the prime goal of the Christian life. To seek His will is to do His will, and when we are obeying His precepts we are doing His will. When we do this in the midst of confusion and uncertainty we become crushed. Our will either surrenders and pours out sweet wine, or we fight and squeeze out bitterness and shame. We will either lead, follow or get out of the way. We will lead ourselves to pride and contempt, or we will give up bitter and disillusioned, or we will learn what life is all about. Following Christ.
When we are in search of needs and desires and go to our Lord for His advice we become frustrated because we tend, at least I do, to seek specifics. Sometimes God will give you what you seek, mostly He is in wait for our adoration. We look to specifics; He seeks us and our devotion that is demonstrated in virtue.
Our prayer life should reflect us seeing how to live more Christ like in character with humility, patience, wisdom and so forth. The more we are honest about our call and engage in its endeavor, the more of a blessing we are to Him and others around us. This must captivate our imaginations and desires so we would rather be a door keeper in His house then to live anywhere else. That we would be horrified to gain all of the worlds riches and ignore His call. We would rather be a worm under a shoe, than an eagle soaring, if it is His will we be the worm and not the eagle. Because we would soar in vain triumph and exercise vanity rather than virtue. If God wants us to be the worm, than we are much better off to do so and be that worm for His glory. If we try to soar without Him, we fly to ourselves without meaning and purpose, and crash upon ourselves.
· Virtue is not something we do occasionally. Virtue is not meant for only one certain place such as church. It is not supposed to be put on hold when it inconveniences us or another such as at our work.
· Virtue is a lifestyle that follows us around wherever we go, and whoever we are with. It is character oozing out of us. Integrity is the trademark that produces honesty, truthfulness, faithfulness, authenticity, substance, and reliability, which translates into our moral fiber.
· Consistency must be our hallmark.
· When we surrender our will to God, we are in fact giving Him everything, all we are and all we have and all that we could be. We may give God our money, our time and our talents, but if we hold back who we are, we are giving Him nothing. God does not need our money or our time or our gifts and talents, what He wants is our obedience through virtue, our will surrendered.
· Our greatest treasure is who we are in Christ, not wealth or affluence, not ability or position, whether we are homeless and unemployed or president of the U.S., we are nothing without Him.
And when times of suffering and confusion come upon us we will thirst and wither away without His nourishment. We will learn nothing and become detestable in His sight. How sad and what a waste to go through a trial and come out without learning and growing, seizing His opportunity to be virtuous. We would have gone through all that pain and adversity for nothing, just meaningless emptiness. Can you imagine anything sadder?
· Do we give God what we have, or do we give Him all that we are?
Psalm 131 tells us:
My heart is not proud, O LORD, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me. But I have stilled and quieted my soul; like a weaned child with its mother, like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.
This is Gods foremost will for our lives. It is not a question of what we do is the importance, it is who and how we are that is the perfect supreme quintessential aspect of knowing Gods will for our lives!
Condensed from the book "Finding God's Will for your Life" by Richard J. Krejcir, Copyright 1997
Richard Joseph Krejcir, is the Director of Into Thy Word Ministries, a discipleing ministry. He is also a pastor, teacher, speaker is a graduate of Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena California and has amounted nearly 20 years of pastoral ministry experience mostly in youth ministry, including serving as a church growth consultant.