Paul is urging his readers to keep growing in Christ and getting closer to Him every day. He uses his walk as an example for them as well as others whom he has pointed out earlier. He also gives another warning about those who are not following the truth.
When I think about this passage I think about a crowd of people around Jesus. Everyone in it is trying to get as close to Him as possible. They are pushing and pressing into each other to gain a little more reach. But in order to get closer to Him in this example they have to push someone else further away.
The desire to reach Him is what struck me as important though. These people would do anything to get to Him. I think this is the kind of attitude we need to have in our relationship with Him. Willing to do the work to get to Him. Ready to fix our eyes on Him and determine in our heart that we WILL reach Him, or die trying.
I think this was Paul’s attitude. He didn’t care what it cost him. He didn’t rest on his laurels. He didn’t look back at his accomplishments and hold them up to Jesus to say, “Isn’t this enough?” He kept working on his relationship with Jesus every day, no matter what. That was more important to him than life itself. Because it was eternity itself.
He wasn’t perfect and he knew it. He hadn’t reached the place of completeness. He still had a ways to go. He knew he wouldn’t make it to completion this side of Heaven and neither will we. That’s fine by me because then I don’t have to worry about ever reaching perfection to make it into Heaven. All I need to do is trust in His grace and build on our relationship every day. I will never be a “Paul”, but I will be me, a beloved child of the King. That’s enough for me.
Father God, thank You that I don’t have to be perfect to come to You or to make it into Your Kingdom. I would NOT make it! I am so far from perfect that I can’t even see it from here, and that’s ok with me too. I know that You walk with me all the way home, from beginning to end. Every step of the way. When I see You though I want to hear You say, “Well done good and faithful servant.” I don’t need anything more than that. I want to continue working on our relationship every day until You say those words. I want to please You, not because I have to but because I want to. Help me please to press in every day. Help me remember our time together and choose You over anything else. I know that is sometimes a challenge for me, especially when I’m reading a good book. But YOU are more precious than anything else. Nothing I desire compares to You.