It’s a nice idea that we can sail through life without a care and without effort. There must be people who live like that, but the Bible indicates a different picture. We are told in a number of ways to activate, bring to life or energise various aspects of our life.
As I point out a few of those areas to you let me encourage you to be proactive about bringing to life the wonderful things God has for you.
One area is in being diligent about serving God and others, since this is part of fulfilling the two greatest commands, to love God and love our neighbour.
Note also that Apostle Paul told his apprentice Timothy to stir up, or fan into flame, the gift God had given him.
“I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” 2Timothy 1:6
We are also told to be active with the various gifts and ministries God has given us. Some are prompted to serve God in various ways, such as with words or actions.
“We have different gifts according to grace given us. If prophecy, do it in proportion to faith; if serving, serve; if teaching, teach; if encouraging, encourage; if giving, give generously; if leading, lead with diligence; if showing mercy, do it cheerfully.” Romans 12:6-8
We are also to be diligent in seeking God, such as searching for wisdom and pressing in to God for what He has for us.
“Make your ear attentive to wisdom and incline your heart to understanding. Yea, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” Proverbs 2:2-5
“Seek the Lord while He may be found. Call on Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the unrighteous man his thoughts, and let him return to the Lord, for He will have compassion, and to our God, for He will freely pardon.” Isaiah 55:6,7
You can see from these verses that we are not to just cruise through life as if we are on holiday, but we are to take responsibility for ourselves and for the opportunities and responsibilities God gives us. We are to be proactive in serving God, seeking God, using the gifts God gives and moving ahead in life.
This is important for life in general. If we are casual about things and slack about our abilities and opportunities we will waste them and miss much of life’s potential.
As a school student I was attentive in class and so could perform quite well in tests and projects. That gave me the impression I was smart and with that idea in mind I decided I didn’t have to work as hard as others.
That worked out fine enough in my school years, but I had no study or research skills for University life. I tried to cruise my way through the courses, but simply paying attention in class wasn’t enough any more. That was a wake-up moment for me, as others I thought weren’t so smart passed tests where I failed. If I had become diligent and gained a set of study skills and related disciplines I could have had a much better education experience.
I had not activated the talents and advantages I had, but simply used them as excuse to cruise and be slack.
I was also slack about my health, keeping up with old friends, the small garden I tried in the backyard, keeping my things well maintained, and so on. So, many good things I could have enjoyed ended up trashed, because I had not learned to activate my life.
I am not saying we have to become fanatical slaves to our potential or live like machines trying to churn out the most of everything we have. God hasn’t called us to be obsessive about life, but to enjoy it, with His grace and blessing.
But we need to keep in mind that it is up to us to activate the blessings and cultivate the capacities and live out the opportunities God gives us.
As comfortable westerners we are all likely to take life easy at times. We have many comforts and many distractions, so we are likely to focus on those things when we can. And those things may not be wrong or bad in themselves. Yet we are to also keep in mind that we are responsible for the life God has given us and responsible to do what God wants of us.
God will hold us to account for what we do with our life. As blessed people God will ask much from us.
“From those who have been given much, much will be required; and to whom men entrust much, of him they will ask all the more.” Luke 12:48
A key area that demands our constant attention is our walk with God. We are to build up our faith, keep in good fellowship with Christians and be close to the Lord.
“But you, beloved, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God as you await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you eternal life.” Jude 20,21
“Do not forsake the assembling of yourselves together, as some do, but exhort one another, and so much the more as you see the day approaching.” Hebrews 10:25
Let me suggest that you can enjoy more of the power and reality of your Christian life if you activate it, by prayer, worshipping God, stirring up faith, fellowshipping with Christians, sharing your faith, seeking God, searching out God’s wisdom, using gifts and talents God has given you and coming regularly into God’s presence.
And consider these prompts from Paul.
“Be always rejoicing, pray constantly, give thanks in everything; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1Thessalonians 5:16-18
However you do it, let me encourage you to step up in your spiritual life, taking hold of more of what God has for you, by doing all the things God prompts and thereby Activating Your Life.