Riding On A Flat Tire
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not only in my presence, but so much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For God is the One working in you, both to will and to do His good pleasure.
~ Philippians 2:12-13
Salvation is not something we have earned. It is a gift. Ephesians 2:8-9 clearly states, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not of yourselves. It is the gift of God, not of works, so that no one should boast.” So what exactly did Paul imply when He wrote a letter to the saints in Ephesus, when He said, “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling?”
As I was riding my bike the other day, I thought about the effort it took to pedal, brake, and balance, and thought, “This is very much like my everyday Christian walk.” Going up the hills, takes much more strength in pedaling. Hitting a hole takes a balancing act. Going downhill, causes one to utilize the brakes. One day, I was using so much effort to pedal my bike that I knew something had to be wrong. When I got a quick peek at my back tire, I found it was completely flat. Riding a bike with a flat tire is nearly impossible.
Our Christian walk is very similar. We have good days when it’s easy to praise God for all His goodness. We have days when we hit the potholes, and glitches, that cause us to have to counterbalance. We need to draw closer to Christ, and depend on Him to bring our life back into balance. Sometimes we are heading so fast downhill, that we need to put on our brakes. During those times we need to stop, pray, and really listen to God’s calling. And then there are times, life is so difficult, that it’s like riding a bike with a flat tire. Each step we depend on Christ to help us through our crises.
When we mess up, we need to go to the Lord and seek forgiveness. When our Christian life seems flat, we need to be rejuvenated in Christ’s love. We need to continually confess, pray, read the word, be still to listen to the Holy Spirit, love more, complain less, be more grateful and joyful, and let Jesus mold and make us more like Him each day. We are a continual work in progress.
When I fix my tire, and add air, the bike ride is much less difficult. When we allow the Holy Spirit to fill us completely, living the Christian life, and walking the Christian walk is easier. This is what Paul was saying, when he said to work on our salvation. Once we belong to Christ, nothing can snatch us out of His hands, however we need to be careful, and not let our walk with Jesus become flat. To be an effective Christian, we need to work on our relationship with Christ, and with others, daily.
Dear Savior, Help me to grow closer to you each day, so that I can be a better witness to others. Amen
~ Jenny Calvert