Building Your Life on Christ
“What I mean, brothers and sisters, is that the time is short. From now on those who have wives should live as if they do not; those who mourn, as if they did not; those who are happy, as if they were not; those who buy something, as if it were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away.”
1 Corinthians 7:28-31
These words come from the Apostle Paul in his letter to the Saints of Corinth. In a city rampant with immorality and idol worship, the church whom Paul loved and ministered to was struggling to not be influenced by the things of the world. Many of the problems within the church found their roots in the life of the city. Oh, how we can relate. This church was in the world, but Paul urged them to live out their identity, set apart.
Of course, Paul wasn’t urging believers into the ascetic ‘drop everything and follow after Saint Simeon the Stylite’ life. Rather, Paul was urging them to change their perspective on marriage, mourning, happiness, and money: he was urging them to live with an eternal perspective. To view these things in light of eternity. To live every day in constant pursuit of Christ, knowing that any day could be their last.
I first read this passage when I was in my teens. At the time, I was so engrossed in the things of this world that this passage was so foreign to me. “Those who buy something as if it were not theirs to keep”… But if I buy something, doesn’t it make it mine?
It is so easy to get into the mindset that our money is ours, our marriage is ours, our life is ours. Things that were intended for God’s glory, we are now glorifying instead of Him.
I needed a mindset shift, the same one Paul was hoping for his fellow brothers and sisters in Corinth. This was the passage that helped me realize the importance of building my life on Christ, and not on the things of this world.
Being a leader means that many people will rely on us for many different things. It is all too easy to put our worldly responsibilities above our divine ones. Leadership is a gift that is given by God, and in order to be good stewards of this gift, we must keep our focus upward, not outward.
I have met far too many people who have made their lives about a person, a job, a sport (fill in the blank). Only to later lose their loved one to cancer, go bankrupt, or suffer from a major injury. Talk about your world getting flipped upside down.
As Christians, and leaders, we should find comfort in the fact that our hope is in God, not in the temporary things of this world, “for the present form of this world is passing away”.
Let’s not get comfortable with the things this world has to offer us. Let’s make Christ our aim and nothing else.
By Chelan Cody
Chelan lives in Maple Ridge, BC and has been on staff at Maple Ridge Baptist for just over 2 years. She attended bible college at Capernwray, New Zealand and is currently in her third year at the University of the Fraser Valley in pursuit of a career in education/mental health work. She is passionate about seeing young people be transformed by the gospel. She has the privilege of leading an incredible group of Youth/Jr. Youth students, and finds joy in the way God is preparing the next generation of young leaders to live out their calling as disciples. When she isn’t studying or spending time with the youth, you can find her playing scrabble, reading a good book, or doing anything else your 65 year old neighbour might do.