“I don’t say that I have already achieved these things or that I have reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me.” Phil. 3:12
What were those things Paul had not yet achieved? He was putting his life on the line each time he preached Jesus. My gracious, he was sitting in prison as he wrote this. There is more. He wanted to know Christ and the mighty power that raised Him from the dead. He wanted to share in His death. That hadn’t happened for Paul yet. Who in their right mind would want to experience those things?
Then he goes on to say that he has not reached perfection. I thought about that and said, if I am honest, I have to confess I haven’t reached perfection. I look at Paul’s life after he met Jesus and to me it seems he was as close to perfect as a person could get on this side of heaven. What more was he seeking that he didn’t have?
I believe, he desired to know Christ in a very real, vibrant way. He wanted to be so close to the mind of Christ that his life was automatically lived as Christ would live it. He wouldn’t have to think about “what would Christ do,” but he would be so attuned to Christ that the Spirit would lead him easily to his next task, thought, and prayer.
This ambition caused Paul to press on with determination and diligence. How can I see such an example and refuse to be encouraged to live my life pressing on to know Jesus?
I see the reality of who I am 24/7. I read Paul’s words and Lord, I cherish the idea of such a close attachment to You. Help me, Lord, to look closely into Your words as Paul wrote them guided by Your Spirit. As I see Paul’s determination to follow his desire, help me to press on also so that You may be glorified in me. Amen.