Progress Toward Perfection

     When I consider my current position in God’s eternal kingdom and my qualification for entering heaven in the future, I realize I am already perfect. The Creator and Sustainer of the entire universe has already promised me a place there.

     I am born again. I am a new creation. I am a bought-and-paid-for valued possession of the Almighty God. I am an heir in his kingdom. I am a once-lost coin and a have-been-found lamb. I am the returned, accepted prodigal son. My name is already written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. 

     The blood of Jesus makes me one hundred percent qualified to enter heaven and spend eternity there. God says I don’t need anything else. Nothing needs to be added, subtracted or changed. The transaction is complete. Christ’s blood changed my eternal address from lake of fire to pearly gates.

      In things eternal I am perfect.

     But when I consider my position and condition in God’s now kingdom I realize I am very imperfect. I am selfish, lazy, inconsiderate, intolerant, thoughtless and nasty. I miss and ignore opportunities to serve others. My times of ingratitude to God and others remain legion. God has provided the Holy Spirit to teach and sanctify me, but much of the time I ignore his teaching.

     I thank him every day that He considers me a work in progress, rather than a lost cause. I am not as Christlike as I should be or will be, but I am better than I was. I need to hang a sign around my neck that says “Have patience. Holy Spirit at work.”

     My place in heaven does not depend on such improvement, but my joy and peace in this life surely do. My chance of hearing “well done” from the Father is contingent on my allowing the Holy Spirit to do his work in me.