We are creatures of habit, and our habits reflect our true selves because we all build our daily lives around our priorities and passions. We make time for what we truly value, building habits and routines around the things that really matter to us. As believers we should lead lives that are faith-focused and cross-centered. A faith-focused, cross-centered life is made of faith-focused, cross-centered days.
How do we apply our faith in every area of life? The answer is to preach the Gospel – the unshakable faith foundation – to yourself. Here is what matters most to a believer: We’re forgiven! We have hope! Our hope is based on Jesus’ sacrifice. May today – and every day – be governed by this one defining truth.
Here are five practical ways to do that.
1. Memorize the Gospel – Store up God’s Word in your heart (Psalm 119:11). Then, no matter where we are or what we’re doing, we may pull them out and be strengthened by their truth. Not good at memorization? That’s no problem. Don’t give up. Work at it. God isn’t keeping score. It may take some longer than others, but it’s worth the effort. (2 Corinthians 5:21; Galatians 2:20-21; Romans 3:23-26; 5:6-11; 8:31-34; Isaiah 53:3-6)
2. Pray the Gospel – The Gospel should be at the center of our prayer lives. We may boldly approach God only because we are accepted in God’s beloved Son, through His work on the cross. Thank God for saving and sustaining grace. Be thankful that because of the cross we are reconciled to God, and have been given the Holy Spirit to dwell in us, lead us, guide us, and empower us to follow after Christ.
3. Sing the Gospel – It doesn’t matter how well or how poorly we sing (some would say my best singing is done softly and tenderly on a hill far away), a Christian’s heart should be overflowing every day with songs of praise to our Lord and Savior. But not all worship songs are created equal. Many are more centered on ourselves than on Christ. Sing songs that focus more on what Jesus has already done, is doing, and will do than on what we need or want God to do. Here is an example of what I mean. It’s the hymn Cross of Jesus by Keith and Kristyn Getty:
Cross of Jesus cross of sorrow
Where our sinfulness was laid
Perfect love on you was broken
As the way to God was paved
Cross of love – the scar of heaven
Cross of love – that heals my soul
Let me not forget such mercy
Let me give the life I owe
O what language shall I borrow
As I praise You faithful friend
How for us You bore our suffering
In Your love which has no end
Died that I might be forgiven
By a power not my own
With His glory set before me
Cross of Jesus lead me home
Make the gospel the sound track of your day.
4. Review the Gospel – Always remember how the Gospel has changed you, is changing you, and will one day complete that change (2 Corinthians 1:10). Be reminded of how marvelous God’s salvation is. Remember and be encouraged that God is faithful! (Philippians 1:6)
5. Study the Gospel – To grow in our passion for what Jesus has done, is doing, and will do, we should increase our understanding of Him. The Gospel is life-changing, world-altering truth. We’ll never exhaust its depths. Let’s read the Bible with our eyes peeled for Jesus!
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. A faithful life is made of faith-filled days. Keep drawing near one day at a time by memorizing, praying, singing, reviewing, studying, and living the good news of Jesus Christ.
(The above list was gleaned from the book The Cross-Centered Life.)