Then Maybe Your Goal Isn’t Big Enough
"Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4 ESVDelight - A high degree of pleasure, or satisfaction of mind; joy. Websters Dictionary“If you love me, you will keep my commandments" John 14:15 ESV"22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24 For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing." James 1:22-25 ESV
A man who is a hearer only and has knowledge of God does not delight in Him. He also really doesn't love him, at least not at that moment. The inconsistency of human behavior makes doctrines like the Sovereignty of God and Man's responsibility difficult to pin down.
"12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known." 1 Corinthians 13:12 ESV
Most professing Christians are divided somewhere between holiness and total depravity. I've seen the most devout follower of Christ slide into degradation and the most vile of sinners transformed into a mighty warrior of faith, hope, and love. Most of us fall somewhere in between.
"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways." James 1:5-8 ESV
How often have you asked for wisdom and doubted God would deliver? What is difficult about this is that God not only instructs us to do things, but commands emotions.
"whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work." 2 Corinthians 9:6b-8 ESV
He commands us to hope, be grateful, and even to hate evil. The doctrine of Sanctification as taught in Scripture shows us that this emotional transformation is gradual, only to be evidenced by deeds. Therefore, knowing where you stand sometimes is difficult to asses. Many times even the Apostles themselves slipped into old sins. One time I can think of is when Peter shunned the Gentiles when meeting with the brethren (Galatians 2:11-21). When the Bible tells us to examine ourselves, we need not stare too long. You will certainly have an inadequate measure of things and will slide into despair. Jesus is our King and Savior. Only He can heal your wounds and cleanse your wicked heart. Make Jesus your goal. He is our highest example and value. Look only to yourself to asses where you need to improve, but do not stay there. Aim high to the King of kings. Sine Metu