Devotion as a Way of Life
Devotion is not just about prayer, quiet time, and reading the bible.
Devotion is also, about how we live our lives. We show real devotion by doing “everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:17) Whatever we do—our job, hobbies, how we interact with friends, family, and strangers should all be done to the glory of God. How we face life’s ups and downs is how we give glory to Christ. God has accepted us. Jesus died on the cross to redeem and restore us; now we ought to live in compassion and gratitude for all that has been lavished upon us.
We are to live by faith—how that looks will differ person to person. In 1 Corinthians 10 Paul advises, “Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
At the beginning of Romans 12 Paul writes, “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Our life is to be lived in worship to God and in gratitude for the blessings lavished on us. For us who have been blessed greatly we are to pay it forward by extending those same blessings to others. Not for our own sake have we been saved, blessed, and graced, but to extend our gifts to our needy brothers and sisters.
If our devotion doesn’t make us better, healthier, saner human beings what worth is it?
Shouldn’t our devotion to the God of life and love produce in us life and love?
Our life is to be lived in deep gratitude and awareness for the blessings God lavishes on us. Jesus went to the cross and died for us, now as his followers we are to live radically for him. Not just in any way. We are to live as Jesus did. We are to live as followers of Jesus. The life of Jesus matters because it shows us how to live here and now. The life of Jesus shows us what a life lived with God really looks like. We are to love and care for the least. Saved, blessed, and graced, we are to share and extend the same to others. Embrace everyone without exception. Every genuine act impelled by the love of Christ is itself worship a way of reflecting back to God the radiance of his being.
Devotion is about aligning our hearts, souls, and lives to Jesus who showed us what it looks like when heaven comes to earth.
It is not about punishing or curbing our desires or sectioning off parts of our life, but living a life of fullness in God’s love and grace.
Desire is not a bad thing. It is what we do with our desires, how we satisfy them that is good or bad. Presenting ourselves, as a living testament of God’s redeeming love is the most coherent and astonishing pursuit anyone can participate in. This way of living is diametrically opposed to self-centered living, life is not all about me, life is about God and others, life is both personal and communal.
Not conforming but transforming our self is all about how we approach life. It is not about willfully causing a stir, but becoming who we really are, who God created us to be. The old self is the false self. The new self is who we really are down deep. This is about authenticity and transparency. We stop conforming to what others want and transform into who we’ve always meant to be. This will upset some. Some will walk out of our life. We will be naked before God, ourselves, and others. We will see all the ways we have hurt others and lied to ourselves. It is only in transforming into our real self that we will live life to the full.
To live a life a real devotion we must seek God in and through the bible. Living for God means giving up ourselves and desiring God’s will above all else. It means following Jesus and seeking to live as Jesus did and wants us to live. As we come to know God and his Word more, His desires will more naturally become ours. God will mold us into more Christ-like, God glorifying, humble human beings.
I have dedicated my life to living for and with God. I want to help others seek God and find ways of communing with God personally. For me, the St. Francis Prayer has helped me to draw closer with God and understand what living the Gospel is all about—to love and forgive always, to spread joy, hope, and light where they are most needed. A life of real devotion to God means dying to self daily and clothing myself in Christ, in sharing my journey with others and studying the ways and Word of God.
Devotion is an inner drive to root one’s life in the Kingdom of God.