When you give, lives are being changed! Every Friday, we’re taking a peek at how God is working in the lives of our iCYOUTH students. These servants of Jesus are walking daily by faith as they navigate the hallways and relationships inside their school walls and beyond. Our weekly series highlights what God is up to in their lives in their voices. Leave them some encouragement by commenting!
by Grant Everly
We seem to constantly find ourselves in a state of doing; don’t we? The idea of keeping yourself busy and doing as much as you can permeates every corner of our society, and we oftentimes fall prey to this philosophy especially when it comes to our own personal walks with Christ. We attempt to keep ourselves “busy” in our walks with the hope that in doing so we’re progressing. Unfortunately, however, it doesn’t work like that.
If our actions aren’t a reflection of our inward love for God, He couldn’t care less about what we’re doing. When we look at scripture, we find that the only thing that matters in Christianity is the state of our relationship with God. Consider what Christ says in Matthew 23.
“Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.” –Matthew 23:25-26
It quickly becomes apparent that what we’re doing on the outside has no real importance if we aren’t clean on the inside. Unfortunately, we often carry ourselves in a way that presents us as clean on the outside even though inside we haven’t taken the time to clean ourselves. This, as Christ shows, is quite detrimental to our relationship with Him.
When it comes down to it, as Christians, perhaps the most important thing in our development is inward, honest and convicting self-evaluation. We need to take the time to step back and ask God to reveal the things that need to change in our hearts. This is easier said than done. In our rapidly moving lives, taking the time to sit quietly and ask God to convict us is something we don’t do nearly enough. However, it is one of the most important things in our relationship with Christ, because without changing our internal being, we can’t expect the outside to change.
It certainly is a daunting task to sit down and ask God to show us where our hearts are out of alignment with His, but how can we as Christians expect to make genuine progress in our relationship with Christ without first aligning our hearts with God’s?
Even with lives that seem to be flying by at 100 miles per hour, it is so crucial for us to examine our inner selves and ask God to transform us. We need to be clean cups on the inside, so that God can use us in big ways to further His kingdom.
So as you’re reading this, I would encourage you to truly take a step back. Examine your relationship with Christ. Why are you doing the things that you are doing? Are you doing them because you feel the need to be doing something, or are you doing them because Christ has cleaned the inside of your cup?
When Christ radically changes the inside of us, the rest falls into place. We simply need to take the time and have the faith to give God our inner lives.
Grant Everly is a sophomore at Warren Township High School and regularly attends church with his family and iMPACT on Sunday nights. He plays soccer, enjoys sports and has passion for learning more about Christ and growing in Him.