What does the “victorious” Christian life look like? More BMW than Kia? More Escalade than Elantra? More Disneyworld than “stay-cation?” More cover of GQ and Cosmo than jail mug shot? One thousand Facebook friends? 200 likes for a social media post?
People tend to measure the quality of life by the quantity and quality of things they own (or at least are making payments on). People tend to measure the “full” life by how they feel rather than by what is really true. This overlooks the truly victorious Christian life.
The victorious Christian life looks different than many people think. It’s not about the job or the house or your health or your looks or your total net worth. The victorious, “full,” Christian life has much more to do with emptiness than material fullness.
Envision the empty cross and the empty tomb and your debt of sin to God. All of these “empty” items mean a full life of forgiveness and peace and mercy in the presence of God!
Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) Components of this “full” include the following:
- Forgiveness: “The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” (John 10:11)
- Relationship with God: “I know my sheep and my sheep know me.” (John 10:14)
- The Holy Spirit in your life: “When the Counselor comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father, he will testify about me.” (John 15:26)
- A joyful task as witness of the Gospel: “you also must testify.” (John 15:27a)
There’s more, so much more. But it should be clear that the victorious Christian life is able to be lived regardless of outward, material blessings (and even when we lack them). We are victorious when we ask for and receive forgiveness. We are victorious when we rely on Jesus more every day. We are victorious when the Holy Spirit increases our faith through our use of Word and Sacrament. We are victorious when we reflect the love of Jesus by forgiving and serving others
The true victorious Christian life may not make for an interesting reality show. It would not increase the ratings on religious TV shows. But it’s a great life, the best life to be had this side of heaven. It’s a grace-filled life.
Find strength and refuge in the reality of the true victorious Christian life. Fix your eyes on Jesus.
Grateful for God’s grace,
Pastor Stephen Luchterhand