Downtown used to have a large department store with a bargain basement. One could go down the escalator to rummage through seconds and overstocks. One day I found an attractive shirt with a tag attached that read “$5 – If Perfect $7.”
Okay, I liked the shirt, but it didn’t really give me a choice. I would have gladly paid the $7 for the perfect shirt. But there it was, flawed for $5.
Well, speaking for myself, and probably most Christians, I am like the bargain basement shirt. I am flawed. In other words, my thoughts, words and actions are at least some of the time outside of the will of God, or God’s Natural Law.
Yet, through the power of God, through Christ and the Holy Spirit, I am offered redemption. Through His power, I can aspire toward perfection, with Jesus Christ the model for this perfection on earth.
Today I marveled as I read Philippians 3:12 in my Amplified Bible: Paul writes: “Not that I have now attained [this ideal], or have already been made perfect, but I press on to lay hold of (grasp) and make my own, that for which Christ Jesus (the Messiah) has laid hold of me and made me His own.”
What a beautiful ideal! Through His life-giving ministry, His willingness to endure the cross, and His gracious resurrection, I am able, through the power of Christ, to aspire to be made perfect, as perfect as Christ Jesus.
Put simply, through confession, (either internally or to a priest or minister) repentance, and a willingness to be reformed in His image, I am able to aspire to a better life for myself and for those around me. Sounds like a pretty good deal! Have faith.
I would encourage my readers to take a few moments when you get a chance and read the third Chapter of Philippians. It will knock your socks off!