The Secret of Christian Living
Just because some people’s attempts are not successful does not prove that success is impossible. We should not be discouraged just because others have failed. A small boy tried to do a certain task, but failed. Another boy of equal ability, saw the reason for the first boy’s failure. He learned by the failure, made the attempt himself, and succeeded. Many a person has raised the monument of victory on the ruins of another’s defeat. I hope to aid you in living a Christian life by pointing out some reasons why others have failed.
In talking with people about the Christian life, we often hear expressions like these: “I cannot live as I would like to live.” “I do many things which I know I ought not to do.” One man said, “I have been trying with all the energy of my being for 20 years to live a true and right life, but I have miserably failed. I have sinned more or less every day.”
Many sincere hearts are hungering for a higher, holier, nobler life. There is something in the nature of man that demands a life that is true and right; but alas, how many are failing to find anything which meets that demand?
It gives me inexpressible joy to be able to tell you that we can always think that which is true and do that which is right. There is a Holy Power which we can possess in our own life that will enable us, not as a mere machine, but as a volitional person, to do from the heart that which is true and right. Thank God, we can live as the great Author of Life intended us to live! Each evening, as we rest our head upon our pillow, we can have the blessed consciousness that our life that day has met all the purpose and expectation of our Maker, and met the demands of our own nature. There is no sweeter life on earth than this. It is a heavenly life. It is the Christian life. You are eager to know how to live such a life and I am eager to tell you.
You will agree with me when I say that in all the undertakings of life two things are necessary to success: first, beginning right; second, keeping right. If we begin right and then keep right, we will end right. The problem with the majority of those who do not live right is because they did not begin right. Many of those who do evil while they desire to do good refer us to Paul’s experience. Paul did have such an experience, but it was because he had not begun right. Later he went back to the beginning and started right. From that time on he lived so holy, justly, and blamelessly that when he came down to the closing hour of life he said, “I have fought a good fight; I have kept the faith; I am ready” (2 Timothy 4:6-7).
All men and women who sin “more or less every day” are sinners. That is the way sinners live. If a plant bears sour grapes “more or less” every year, do we call it a fig tree? The only way to live a true Christian life is to become a Christian. You cannot live like Christ except you get the life of Christ within you.