Have you heard this phrase before “it’s my life, I will do anything I want to do with it”? well, it is a common phrase for many of us, especially when we are trying to prove a point over an argument or a discussion. We might have even used it against someone when it seems like there’s no headway or progress in convincing them from a decision they are about to take “well, it’s your life, you can do whatever you want to do with it”. Irrespective of whom this phrase is coming from, the BIG question remains “is it truly YOUR LIFE?”.
This life which you claim to be yours, is it truly yours? Often, when people make a statement like this, what they mean is that my decisions and actions should not be of concern to you. In other words, I can do anything I want to do because it is my life. I can wake one morning and make a decision irrespective of your opinion about it. In as much as this may appear to be the case of many of us and it seems logical, it is not the truth. Even if we don’t want to be responsible for anyone concerning things about life (our decisions and actions), we will always be responsible for one Person – God.
The life that you have, in the first place wasn’t given to you by YOU but was given to you by GOD. Whether you are a believer or an unbeliever, atheist or Buddhist or whatever religion you want to call it, we are all accountable to GOD. That’s why the Scripture in Hebrews 12:9 says “Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the FATHER OF SPIRITS and live!” (NIV, emphasis added). The writer refers to God as the Father of spirits. Man is a spirit that has a soul and lives in a body (see 1 Thess. 5:23).
You are God’s creation, that was why God took it upon Himself to provide redemption through Jesus Christ after mankind was brought to corruption through the disobedience of Adam. Ephesians 1:7 “in him (Christ) we have REDEMPTION through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (NIV, emphasis added). So, as many that have received this salvation that came through the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross should no longer have this mindset of It’s my life because you were bought (redeemed) with a price (see 1 Cor 6:20; 7:23). The price was His body that was broken for you and His blood which was shed for the remission of your sins (see 1 Cor 11:24, Matt 26:28).
In his letter to the Church at Corinth, Apostle Paul exhorted “And he died for all that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again” (2 Cor. 5:15, NIV). Christ died for YOU so that you don’t live for yourself but Him! This is a battle for many and a struggle that we sometimes want to convince ourselves that this doesn’t exist. But we will do ourselves better to accept this truth and walk in it. God is interested in your every decisions and actions; He wants to be in the know and wants you to bring everything to Him for His approval. I could remember discussing with an elderly woman, she said to me “Erons, I think you should start making plans to travel out of Nigeria to country XYZ to continue your life there”. I smiled at her and said, “that’s a great plan ma, but that’s not God’s plan for me at the moment”.
Many have taken decisions, jobs, career path and relationships that took them out of God’s plan and purpose for their lives, all because they’ve sheltered themselves under the umbrella of it’s my life. Don’t allow yourselves to be pressured into making a decision that you know isn’t God’s plan for you at the moment. It got to a point I stopped explaining the reasons for my actions because it’s too difficult for the ordinary mind to comprehend. I just left them to see the results. He died for you, so why live your life like it’s a ‘no Christ business’. In an article I once wrote understanding the purpose of free will, I explained that a God gave us free will but it will be to our best interest to use our free will to choose His will for our lives. Yes, God won’t force Himself on you that you must live for Him, but as Scripture puts it “So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God” (Romans 14:12).
Free will gives God the grounds to judge man. The death of Jesus wasn’t for a group of people called Christians, or a nation called Israel but for all man. In the passage we read earlier, “He died for ALL”. The consequence of not using your free will to accept God’s will (believe in His Son to receive to Salvation) is condemnation (see John 3:17 & 18). People don’t go to hell for the sin they commit but that they refuse to believe in Jesus. God doesn’t send anybody to hell, people go to hell by exercising their own free will. The apostle Peter puts it clearer “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish but to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9, emphasis added). The Greek word for repentance is metanoia, which means a change of mind. A change of mind towards believing the right thing. Whatsoever means we thought we could get to God before Christ came has become obsolete and irrelevant. When Jesus came, He declared boldly that “I am the WAY and the TRUTH and the LIFE. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6, NIV).
The conclusion of the whole matter is in knowing that we can together with Paul declare boldly “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20, NIV).