So if someone would have said to me at the age of 16 that “Anabel, in a few years’ time you are going to be living for God wholeheartedly and doing everything for his glory and nothing else.” I would have replied that person with this: “I don’t go to church because everyone there is judgemental and I am going to leave a mark on this earth by becoming the first female president of Ghana and the first black woman to be appointed UN Secretary General.” After giving this reply, I would expect the person to say nothing else because when it came to my life- I needed to have the last word and that was it.
Fast-forward to 2 years ago- no actually 3 years later and I am in my university accommodation pouring my eyes out because the feelings of loneliness which came from living a pretentious life had gotten the best of me. Then God tells me “Now let me begin the works in you which I had already destined even before your parents thought of you.”
Being in Christ
Each and every day I wake up and I am so honoured that I am living in and for Christ. I face all types of trials and temptations daily; no actually hourly (the struggle is real out here for a 24 years old Christian lady). But I rejoice in them all. Every single temptation that comes in the form of gossip, sexual immorality, jealousy, selfishness, every single trial in the form of not being in the career i thought I was destined for, not having the things I thought I would have by now, not being able to do some of the things I thought I was ready to do now- I COUNT THEM ALL JOY!
Being in Christ these past few years has made me realise two things:
I have FREEDOM to live
In Christ, I have the freedom to live my best life. I know this because the word of God makes it so clear. Psalm 37:4 says: “Delight yourself in the Lord and he will fulfil the desires of your heart.” Isaiah 1:18 also says: “Come now and let us reason together saith the Lord. Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow, though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” This is how I know I have the freedom to live, because the word of God has in it freedom from myself and anything that is counter to the things of God. I have the freedom to live my best life in Christ by God being ever so glorified in everything I am and do. This is FREEDOM.
I live by a standard
The second thing I have realised is that there is a standard of living for me. As a young Christian woman- there is a way I am destined to live my life to please my maker. You know the more I come to the understanding of this- the more nothing else matter. Look at these two Bible texts: Ecclesiastes 11:9-10 “9 You who are young, be happy while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgment. 10 So then, banish anxiety from your heart and cast off the troubles of your body, for youth and vigour are meaningless.” I Timothy 4:12 “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.”
The standard of living as a Christian is not measured by my acquiring of goods or the amount books I will read in my life time or anything else society will say my life needs to be measured by. My standard of living as a Christian is all about Christ being represented in my life. That is it.
As young Christians, we are tempted with so many easier options and they all look so attractive. But ask yourself this- Don’t you want joy that is not based on your doings? Don’t you crave for peace that surpasses all human (including that of the late genius Mr Stephen Hawking) understanding? Don’t you want to live free from societal surveillance? We can only live our best life by coming to the saving knowledge of Christ and living according to his standards.
My definition of Being in Christ
Being able to wake up every day despite everything that is going on and with total faith in God through Jesus Christ saying: There is none of me God and there is all of you.