And for this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power which mightily works within me.
“That we may present every man complete in Christ.” What an enormous goal! Can you imagine living your life with the purpose of ensuring that every individual on this planet knew the Lord in a perfect and complete manner? How drastically would that change your life? The Apostle Paul was a man of high standards. He was driven by the desire to live as purely as possible, share the love of Christ with as many as possible, and to understand the Father as fully as possible. Such high standards could produce nothing other than such great results.
It should be your desire as well to live out such high standards. The difficulty of living a godly and productive life is not one born out of weakness but out of complacency and confidence in self.
I have more than once hindered the Holy Spirit’s work in my life and the life of others by not “raising the bar” of expectation. There have been times I refused to share my faith, periods that I have been selfish with my time or resources, and countless other stories of my refusal to do what the Holy Spirit challenges me to take part in. Not all of these failures are because of my outright rejection of the Lord’s will. Many times, I have fallen short of the glory of God simply because I based my effectiveness on the wrong assumptions.
Paul says that all of his labor is done according to God’s power which mightily works within him. The same power that worked within Paul works within you. He could have used no better word than mightily to describe it. The might of the power of God as seen in the birth of Christ, His resurrection, the coming of the Holy Spirit, and the rejuvenation of the sinner is at the heart of who you are. When you or I base our effectiveness to do what the Holy Spirit commands us on self-confidence or ability, we are refusing the mighty power of God in our lives. We are called to accomplish mighty things for the Lord, yet we deny His work because of our own limitations.
I challenge you not to limit yourself to the scope of your own understanding. No great man or woman of the faith has ever accomplished anything according to their own wisdom or ability. Only those who “crucify themselves” and rely completely on the Lord will find their highest goals being obtained. I encourage you to be that person!