Not that I have already obtained this [righteousness God requires] or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own (Phil. 3:12).
As followers of Christ, we must continually fight against sin, but that doesn’t mean we’ll attain perfection on this side of heaven. Even the Apostle Paul acknowledged that he was not “already perfect.”
We won’t be perfect in this life because there’s only person who was: Jesus Christ, our Savior. But the fact that we are not already perfect does not keep us from pressing on to live as he lived. One reason is that we have already been granted a perfect record by the grace of God – he has erased the record of our faults by the blood of Jesus.
When we understand how incredible God’s love for us really is, our heart’s desire is to live for him. The Apostle Paul said it simply and compactly, “I press on to make it [a righteous life] my own, because Christ Jesus made me his own.”
We long to reflect Christ’s heart because he claimed ours. His love for us makes us want to live for him and to be like him.
Friends of ours adopted a child from an African village where food, medical care, and education were almost non-existent. The adoption was truly lifesaving.
Years later, we noted the silhouette of the child – now a young man – approaching us at twilight. His gait was unmistakably that of his adopted father; so was his voice; so was his faith.
So also, we delight to mirror our Messiah. We seek to make our own the life of the One who made us his own.
Lord, you know I am far from perfect, but don’t let that discourage me from seeking to honor you. Fill me with desire to make my own the life of the One who made me his own by his saving grace.