When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are doing much more than joining a new religion. In fact, we are not joining a religion at all; we are becoming a part of the body of Christ. Christians are not simply followers of some religious doctrine. The religion of Christians is to serve God by serving others. We do this through the power of God that is connected to our lives through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. To live a Christian life is to become the hands and feet of Jesus – to carry on the work of Jesus in His absence.
“Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.” James 1:27
As followers of Jesus, we are to be set apart from this world. Christians are different. Christians respond to others in a different way. Christians are different in the way they hold their marriages together. Christians are different in the way they raise their children. Christians should be different at home, at school, at work, in church, and everywhere else. We are no longer spending our lives consumed by selfish ambition – our old life has been done away with – as believers, we are now a direct representative of Christ.
“I have been crucified with Christ; and 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 up for me.” Galatians 2:20
In order to truly walk with Jesus, we need to let go of any and all man-made rituals that have been falsely prescribed as the Christian way of life. Make no mistake about it, there is a counterfeit Christian life that is more of a distraction from Jesus than a fruitful relationship. We can’t build a relationship with Jesus through ritual. We build our relationship with Jesus by seeking His truth through our study of the Bible, by sharing quality time with other believers, and by talking with Him, but more importantly listening to Him in prayer. We then allow Jesus to live through our lives by using the gifts He has given us, sharing our talents and resources with others, and by obeying every nudging of the Holy Spirit when He points us in a new direction.
“He has told you, mortal one, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8
Anything that is distracting us from following in the footsteps of Jesus should be done away with. Anything that is outside of our humble walk with God should be done away with. Anything that does not fulfill the needs of our Lord and Savior is a detour that should be avoided. Jesus is in you. Don’t be a slave to any outside influence. Experience your relationship with Jesus fully and completely by following His guidance found in the pages of the Bible and in your inner connection to Him through the Holy Spirit. You are an indispensable part of the body of Christ. Let His light shine.
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