Once, I was many things I am not proud of. Once, I made decisions based purely on selfish thoughts and desires. Once, I was not a good friend, sister or daughter. Once, I bought into the world’s philosophy of how we should do whatever it takes to get what we want because we deserve it. Once, I was not a Christian. But I am now. I do make mistakes, like everyone else, but my life serves a higher purpose. My life is not my own, but Christ’s, as I have died to the world and risen again as a new being.
Does this describe you? Have you made the wonderful, life-altering decision to follow Christ? You came to the realization that when God created the world, He had a plan to one day send His Son to die so that you might live eternally? You finally realized that the piece of you that was missing, that you attempted to fill with so many other things, was a relationship with God your Father and creator? You were humbled to tears and ashamed of the life you had lived up to that point. You decided that you didn’t want to live another moment separate from God. You learned that God’s word holds the key to the life you want to live and wisdom to help on the journey.
So now what? How do you go back to your everyday life and how are you supposed to act? What exactly is it that God expects from you? We can find the answers to these questions and more in His word and your Bible. Hopefully, that is what led you to begin the journey to follow after Christ. God’s word is our compass, our guide, our light leading the way, while the only way to heaven is through Christ (John 14:6).
God expects you to obey Him.
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments.”
“For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins…”
God wants and expects you to be different. Different from the world and different from how you were before you were baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins. You are to keep His commandments set forth under the new covenant established by Jesus’ sacrificial death, resurrection and ascension into heaven. Christians are called to be lights in this world of darkness (Matt. 5:16). To do this, you must know God’s word.
God expects you to honor Him.
“Pray without ceasing.”
1 Thess. 5:17
“To the King of the ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever.”
1 Timothy 1:17
God expects you to maintain a relationship with Him. God wants His children to meet together and worship Him in spirit and in truth (Heb. 10:24-26, John 4:24). He wants you to pray to Him and with a true heart, not only for the benefit of others (Matt. 6:6). He wants you to remember who He is, the almighty God, and all that He has done for you (John 3:16) and to be grateful. He wants you to continue to ask for forgiveness when you sin, knowing only He can grant it, and fervently striving not to sin. (Eph. 1:7)
God expects you to love Him and love others.
“Love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.”
1 John 4:7
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
God made us, He loves us, and He wants our love in return. He wants your whole heart, all of you. Not only this, but He wants us to show love to others as well, including our enemies (Matt. 5:44). He wants loving families: children should honor and love their parents (Matt. 19:19, Eph. 6:1), while husbands and wives should love and respect each other (Eph. 5:22-33). God also expects Christian parents to raise Godly children (Eph. 6:4, Prov. 29:17).
God expects you to serve Him and serve others.
“You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.”
“Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.”
We serve God by obeying, honoring and loving Him, but there is more to it than that. We are called to serve others as well. James 1:27 tells us that serving others is a crucial part of being a Christian.
God expects you to share the good news with others.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”
Thanks be to God that someone cared enough about you to share the good news of the gospel with you! Christians are called to be more than Christ-like examples. We are to follow in Christ’s footsteps as He was always finding a way to turn the conversation towards God. It is scary, but God has promised He will be with us (Heb. 13:5). If we don’t share God with others, who will?