The Beforehand

As a productive member of society, a person might perform as much research as possible, gain as much knowledge as possible and garnish as much experience in one's industry as possible before landing the dream career.

As an athlete, one might practice and train the body and mind in such a way that when the moment for try-outs come or that big moment in the game arrives - the sportsman or sportswoman is ready to execute their move flawlessly.

The Beforehand is crucial not only in these areas of a person's life but a Christian's life also. After a person surrenders their life to Christ, the daily challenge begins to continue being submitted to The Lord in all areas so that He will use them mightily in His plan to reach and love others.

Those in Scripture that were deemed "blameless" meant that they were full of integrity. Noah (Gen. 6:9) and Job (Job 1:1) were two such men that held this distinction. What an awesome goal to apsire to even in this day and age.

The behavior of a believer alone with only Christ and His guardian angels attending is the beginning of exposing true self. As soon as we are placed in front of a live physical person such as a spouse, another family member or friend - some of our awareness returns and we behave differently. The whole wearing different masks for different people and different situations comes front and center.

However, what if Christians were to practice and train in their alone time so that their character and behavior in private matched what was seen in public. The key is to remember God is watching and desires to be more than an intrested spectator in all of our lives and at all times. 

I imagine there are many Christians who grab their ticket to Heaven by believing and then start waiting for The Heavenly Train-ride. There is more to the Christian life than this picture. In Paul's letter to the believers in Philippi, he said,

"continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose." (Phil. 2:12-13)

Paul encourages the Christian that the journey of faith in Christ is a process. Christ did the work in order to redeem humanity and make us part of His family. However, to be more Christ-like each day, believers have to "continue to work out...with fear and trembling" alongside God the life of grace they have been given. This includes and is especially paramount for what goes on in a believer's life behind closed doors, when no one is looking and is with God in The Beforehand.