With so much in the Bible about our call as Christians to live holy lives, I find that we often focus on the challenge and the obligation, but forget to ponder the payoff. Even when we hear the word “payoff” our minds tend to drift to the “then and there”—which of course will be beyond our most imaginative expectation. But there is plenty of “treasure” that we store up “here and now” which is worth considering.
For instance in Romans 6, after reminding Christians of their mission to pursue holiness, Paul asks, “What benefit did you reap at the time from the things you are now ashamed of? (v.21). That is a great question, one that should get our minds thinking about how much better it is for us “right now” when we actually live according to God’s standards.
Think of how great it is for us when we obey God’s word. Acts of obedience are free from shameful regret, enslaving addictions, and all the destructive repercussions. Righteous decisions, on the other hand, yield the rich benefits of a clear conscience, a mind at peace, a joyful sense of solidarity with our righteous God, and a compounding assurance of our own regeneration.
So today when we make progress in our sanctification let’s be grateful for what we’re missing and enjoy the current fruits of obedience.