Summary: Perseverance is needed in one’s walk of faith.
Galatians 6:7-16 "Perseverance"
One of the most difficult times, for parents, is when they need to give their children the ability to make decisions on their own and experience the consequences of their decisions. There are a lot of prayers that go up at this time. Parents can only hope that they have trained their children in such a way that they make good decisions and that they aren't hurt, killed or hurt others when they make the inevitable bad decisions. This is the price for freedom.
We have come to that point in our relationship with God. Through Jesus' life, death and resurrection, we have been given forgiveness, grace, love, and a new relationship. God has filled us with his Holy Spirit and called us not only to be children of God, but also servants of God. God has set us free. Now, God must stand back and observe how we use our freedom.
There are different paths that lie before us. We can choose the path of the law and lose our freedom. There are modern day "Circumcision Parties," among us. These people demand that we live up to their expectations--of course we never can. They cajole us saying that we must please God. In some ways, they seek to validate their own beliefs by getting others to agree with them.
We can choose the path of self-indulgence. We convince ourselves that we are the chosen ones. We form the belief that Jesus died and rose again, not only so that we could be saved, but so that we could experience the good things in life. Again we lose our freedom. Our selfishness and self-centeredness enslaves us.
Paul encourages his readers to live for others; to choose the path of service. The path of service is not only the truth path of freedom, it is the goal for our freedom. We are saved for others, not for ourselves.
Paul exhorts his readers to be persistent. Christian ministry and mission are not sprints, rather they are marathons. People's lives are not changed overnight. They are changed over time and it takes consistent love and grace to accomplish those changes and transformations.
A token service project, or part-time service is not what are freedom is all about. Service, love, grace, forgiveness, presence are all at the center--the very core--of our freedom.
Paul challenges his readers not to grow weary in their persistent service. Service is not meant to be all consuming. There needs to be time for rest and refreshment. We cannot fall into the trap of believing that our call to service allows us to neglect our families or our other responsibilities.
We keep from growing weary by keeping our eyes on Jesus.
THE CROSS OF CHRIST
We keep our eyes focused on Jesus and see the depth of God's forgiveness, grace and love.
We keep our eyes focused on Jesus and discover what it means to live a life of service and sacrifice.
We keep our eyes on Jesus and we realize what God is really like and what being created in the image of God really looks like.
We keep our eyes on Jesus and we live free as only Christ can make us free.
Robert Frost wrote that he came to a fork in the road and he chose the path less travelled. That choice has made all the difference in his life. We, too, as Christian are invited to chose the road less travelled and allow that to make all the difference in our lives and in the lives of those around us.