Summary: What we don’t realize is that we can have a fulfilling relationship with Jesus here on earth. We don’t have to wait for Heaven, we can have a personal strong and rewarding relationship today. Paul had one and it came from his wholehearted devotion and e
8 RULES FOR A SUCCESSFUL CHRISTIAN LIFE:
WHOLE HEARTED DEVOTION & EFFORT
What does a successful Christian life look like? My desire as your pastor is that al of you experience success in your Christian life. I would define ‘success’ in the Christian life as being strong in the faith and capable of sharing that with others. Sometimes we might wonder, how do we get there? Is there a process? Are there things we can do or cultivate to produce good fruit in our lives?
SEGMENTED NARRATIVE 1… http://www.wholesomewords.org/missions/biojudson.html
By whatever measurement you measure the man Adoniram Judson (1788-1850) -- the measurement always is the same -- he was a mighty man!
Mentally--he was mammoth. He taught himself to read at the age of three years, took navigation lessons at ten, studied theology as a child, entered Providence College (now Brown University) at seventeen -- despite the fact he spent one year of his youth out of school in sickness. He was a "veritable bookworm." Also, he mastered the Burmese language (possibly the most difficult language to acquire, excepting Chinese), writing and speaking it with the familiarity of a native and the elegance of a cultured scholar, and he also translated the Bible into Burmese. His biographers believe that his translation was "undoubtedly his greatest contribution to the people among whom he chose...to spend and be spent for Christ’s sake." Spiritually--he was superlative. Despite the fact his father was a Congregational preacher, and in spite of his mother’s "tears and pleadings," Judson was not saved until he was 20 years of age. His conversion not only saved his soul, it smashed his dreams of fame and honor for himself. His one pressing purpose became to "plan his life to please his Lord."
Adoniram Judson’s pressing purpose in his life became “to plan his life to please his Lord.” I wonder if we find that kind of whole-hearted devotion in Scripture? The Apostle Paul was one of those men in Scripture who had a whole-hearted devotion for God. You might say that he had a one-track mind and that one-track mind was God. Paul was a Christian, of that we have no doubt, but he was also a man who worked on his relationship with Christ.
READ PHILIPPIANS 3:13-14
Devotion is one of those words in the English language that is packed full of meaning. Devotion means, “ardent, often selfless affection, and dedication, as to a person or principle. See synonyms love” (American Heritage Dictionary). To be devoted to something means to love it. To be devoted to someone means we are selfless and only think of him or her. Devotion means love. If we love God with our whole hearts, our efforts and our actions will show that. Paul lays out for us in Philippians 3:13-14 his wholehearted devotion.
1. Paul is devoted in his humbleness. He was an Apostle, chosen personally by Jesus to spread the Gospel, and he did not consider himself as “arrived” or a “perfect Christian.” In humbleness, he continued to learn and pray and work for Jesus.