“Not that I have already obtained all this,
or have already arrived at my goal,
but I press on to take hold of that
for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”
Philippians 3:12-14 NIV
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:12-14 NIV
The question is, “Is it really possible to be fully surrendered to the will of God or do we always fall somewhat short of the mark in our spiritual journey?” Regrettably I see clear teaching in Scripture that we shall never reach perfection in this life. Only when we see Jesus shall we be fully like Him (1 John 3:2).
In Philippians 3:12-14 Paul makes clear that he had not “arrived” spiritually. He states that he needed improvement in his spiritual walk. The fact he would not achieve perfection in this life did not dishearten him—rather it spurred him on toward the mark of why the Lord redeemed him in the first place.
Paul tells us that his reach always exceeds his grasp. If this is true for the greatest statesman in Christian history what about us lesser lights?
Paul established Christianity in many countries, he wrote much of the New Testament and he discipled powerful men like Timothy and Titus. No one ever did as much to bring people to Christ and no one gave a greater legacy to the church over the centuries, than the apostle Paul.
Do not become discouraged Christian friend, you are a work in progress and the Lord will change you from glory to glory until you see the Saviour face to face as Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 3:18 NIV
“And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory,
are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory,
which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”
Today renew your commitment to move forward. Seek ever increasing likeness to your blessed Saviour. He will work with you. Your joy today will be in your progress toward perfection. Your joy then will be that you are finally and forever perfection personified.
Changed from glory into glory,
Till in heaven we take our place,
Till we cast our crowns before Thee,
Lost in wonder, love, and praise.