Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | October 29, 2013

August 22, 2016 “Living The Good Life”

“For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” (Philippians 1:21)

Good Morning Saints!

One of my favorite entertainers is the great Tony Bennett. Having just celebrated his 90th birthday within the last few days, the music that still pours out of that man is incredible. While living in Florida, Lydia and I had opportunity to hear him in concert. At one point during his performance, he had the amplification system shut off and he sang unaccompanied. In this huge venue, his clear tones could still be heard reverberating throughout the theater all the way back to the most remote part of that venue. I can only hope that as I advance in years, I will still be singing with enthusiasm, if not volume and clarity. One of his signature songs is called “The Good Life”. It begins with the lyrics, “Oh the good life, full of fun, seems to be the ideal. MM, thee good life lets you hide all the sadness you feel.”  What a sad commentary on what many consider to be the definition of living “the good life.” Quite honestly, I much prefer Paul’s definition of ‘the good life.” He says, “For me, to live is Christ, tdie is gain.”  Paul says living a good life is to know Jesus Christ, and not just know “of” him, but to truly know “Him”. 

How do you truly get to know someone? Conversation plays an important role in becoming familiar with someone. In establishing a relationship with Christ, conversing means praying,” and prayer is more than words. It is, as Paul says,  truly living a life in Christ.  Jaques Ellul put it like this:

“Prayer is not a discourse. It is a form of life, the life with God. That is why it is not confined to the moment of verbal statement.”

Prayer is more than words…it is a form of life with God. Prayer is, in fact, living “Christ”…at work…at leisure…at school…wherever you happen to be. That is why it is not confined to mere words, or the “moment of verbal statement”. That is why scripture teaches us to “pray continually.” It is the essence of a life lived in Christ. It transforms us into His very likeness in thought, word, and deed. Don’t think that when you stop the activity of verbally praying that prayer time has ended. Pray continually by living “Christ” throughout the day. Let’s pray!

Immortal God; In You we discover what it means to truly live. The good life we seek is not found in fun, material wealth, or any earthly thing. It is found in You. Fill us with Your presence throughout this new day, we pray in the powerful Name of Your beloved Son Jesus, in whom we live and move and have our being. Amen!

 

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