Living on Purpose
Matthew 27:24-26 Pilate… took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves.” Then… having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.
I have always found Pilate, who presided over the trial of Jesus, to be a pathetic figure. He did not want to sentence Jesus to death but he did not care enough to stand against the will of his subjects. More interested in keeping the peace than in justice, he acquiesced to the will of the masses and turned Jesus over to be crucified. He found no guilt in Jesus and he made some small effort to save him, but in the end, lacked the conviction to stand for what he believed. Pilate’s inaction is a perfect example of accidental living.
What I dislike in Pilate is that which I dislike in myself. His lack of conviction and purpose reflects mine. I too, have lacked these things in my life. Being driven by my own laziness instead of living for what I knew to be right, I have spent much of my life, living accidentally or incidentally.
What I mean by that is that I have so often failed to purposefully pursue what I know to be right. Like Pilate, I may think that not choosing is a morally acceptable choice. He tried to wash his hands of Jesus blood, but he was as complicit in Jesus death as the crowd because did nothing to stop it. He refused to make the right choice and in doing so, accidentally made the wrong one.
If I want my life to be a certain way, I must purposefully choose to make it so. If I want to be in shape, but do not make the choice to exercise, I have accidentally chosen to be out of shape. If I want to be close to my wife and kids but I do not purposefully take time to connect with them each day, I have accidentally chosen distance from them. If I do not purposefully choose the right thing, I have, by default, chosen the wrong thing.
Likewise, with my faith, if I do not purposefully pursue an intimate relationship with God, I have chosen to be distant from him. God is constantly reaching out to me but by his own design, He allows me to pursue him or not. If I find myself to be distant from God and if I find my faith to be weak, it is not because He has failed me. It is because I have not purposefully chosen him.
If I want to be close to my family, I must purposefully take time daily to connect with them. If I want to be in shape, I must make the choice to work out. If I want to be close to God, I must purposefully take time to pursue him. It is ridiculous for me to ignore God for weeks and then wonder why I cannot feel him. If I want God in me, I must purposefully pursue him daily. The life I want does not happen accidentally. If I want it, I must live on purpose.
The Seeds of the Spirit is a daily blog based on a walk through the New Testament. Written from the perspective of my own addiction, it explores the common defects of our flesh nature and the solution, our spirit life. If you find it helpful, sign up for the blog as a daily email, tell your friends and like/share it on Facebook.