We must not allow ourselves, like so many in the world, to consider that salvation is as easy as falling off a log. Did Jesus have to suffer hatred and persecution? Did the apostle Paul endure many tough trials? Certainly, each follower of Christ named in Hebrews 11 had to experience similar things in their times of service. We must adopt the mindset the apostle Paul followed to keep himself on track.
He urges us not to allow our attention to be diverted toward some earthly desire that our carnality finds appealing and soon morphs into a need. Consider Adam and Eve's example. Despite the fact that they literally saw God and walked and talked with Him, how quickly their thoughts were turned away by Satan's presence and the highly desirable allure of what he presented! We must be aware of our vulnerability given the “right” time and appeal. A person can stay focused only for himself, so Paul implores us to keep our eyes on the goal God has revealed to us.
Jesus taught us to be keenly aware of where our treasure is (Matthew 6:20), and Paul exhorts us to be focused on our heavenly calling (Colossians 3:1-4). We are all somewhat different in what helps keep us inspired, motivated, and focused and thus more willing to trust God, patiently pressing on and persevering day by day to the end of the course He has set for us.
For me, it helps considerably when I can grasp a logical progression of steps that lead to understanding. In me, this is combined with a worldview that is simultaneously vast in scope yet sharply focused so that I can see myself as a cog in a vast and wonderful plan He is directing. Not that I think I am a vital part of that plan, but I am certainly involved in it. This is such a significant and humbling honor that I do not want to disappoint Him!
John W. Ritenbaugh
Leadership and Covenants (Part Three)
Though Paul urges us on to perfection, he was admittedly not completely there himself. He struggled to leave the past in the past and pursue the future. He shows that part of the process is maintaining a perfect attitude—a mind ready, willing and seeking after the prize of the high calling of Christ.
Martin G. Collins
Basic Doctrines: Going On to Perfection
This is further encouragement to those who have not yet reached the stage of maturity Paul describes, as he is explaining that God will faithfully bring our thinking into harmony with His as we continue to strive to be like Him.
John W. Ritenbaugh
The Offerings of Leviticus (Part Nine): Conclusion (Part Two)