"For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. NKJV
He was the living sacrifice, and we are to be living sacrifices for Him and the gospel. That's not to say we must die as martyrs to be saved, but. . .
"Will we die a gruesome life for the one who died a gruesome death for us?"
- Pastor Chaz
Are we willing to give up things of this life for the one who gave up everything for us? Our comforts when needed, the things we love when called, when doing so will, or even only might, fulfill the will of Christ and/or/and further the gospel?
Will we dedicate our life to Him?
Will we lose our life for Him?
For whoever desires/seeks after/covets/chases after his own life will lose it, but whoever loses/gives up/gives his life over for Christ's sake and the gospel's sake will save/gain it.
We are fooled, by the world and by our own flesh, that our 'life' is found and satisfied, made worthwhile, by temporal pleasures. Yet Christ teaches that our joy is not of this world, that it is in Him and God and His Spirit.
We cannot save our own lives, and to seek after doing so will only result in loss; but if we are truly giving up our lives and giving them over for the sake of Christ and His gospel, than we will find ourselves saved in a way we could never before imagine while living for ourself.
Thinking about my time focused and devoted to God, I realize I can also say this by testimony to be truth. I still struggle at times desiring after things which I could before readily enjoy, but at the same time many of those things which I thought wold prove difficult to go without, that I had once so badly 'needed', have proven to be of little concern. In fact, many of my once favorite pastimes seem somewhat disinteresting when I think of returning home and having access to them again.
True, more likely than not I would still enjoy them, but when they cross my mind I cannot help but think of how much time they waste, and a slight worry that i might be foolish enough to fall back into habit and once again become caught up in using them as a means of wasting away the time until something out of the ordinary to do falls into my lap.
I need to pray about what more God would have me do to give up my life and that He would give me strength and peace of mind to lose my 'self-focus' and find greater true joy through a life like Paul's, despite it's difficulties, as a bondservant of Christ, who's life is His and His alone.
Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
To God our Savior,
Who alone is wise,
Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power,
Both now and forever.