Isn’t consistency crucial in a relationship in order for the relationship to be strong? Certainly there will be moments of struggle. Times of failure. But isn’t consistency paramount in any relationship? And doesn’t the same principle apply to our relationship with God through Christ?
As a whole, are we consistent? Are we growing spiritually? Are we more and more faithful? To our King? To His Kingdom? To His will? Or is there somehow a disconnect? In life and faith? Between us and God?
“Compartmentalization” is the practice of separating life into individual compartments. A dichotomy of life. Dividing, separating life into compartments like you’d box up last night’s Ming’s Chinese take-out. Being one person when around other Christians and another when around non-Christians. A different person at home and with the family than at work or with friends or when all alone. In compartmentalization the context dictates who we are in the moment.
The compartmentalization of life is the antithesis of discipleship. The equivalent of hypocrisy. A far cry from living a life formed and shaped by Jesus. When we attempt to compartmentalize life it is impossible to be consistent in our relationship with God. Because we have no core sense of self. We’ve lost who we are. Because who we are fails to be definitively defined by Jesus.
In chapter 7 of the Gospel of Luke, the good doctor describes an event in Jesus’ ministry where our Savior is anointed by a woman who has lived a sinful life. The woman is so grateful just to be in the Messiah’s presence that she is overwhelmed. Christ looks within the heart. Motives and willingness are evident to Jesus, no matter how things may appear to others. The religiously pious and those with prideful hearts question Jesus. But the woman is overwhelmed. “Her many sins have been forgiven,” Jesus says, “Because she loved much.” “But the one who has been forgiven little, loves little.” The question out of this moment in Jesus’ life is not: “Have we been forgiven little or much?” We’ve all been forgiven much. The question is: “Are we overwhelmed that we live in the Savior’s presence?”
Only when we are defined by Christ will we see life with clarity. Rather than the compartmentalization of life (allowing the context and situation to determine who we are and what we are about) we are called to assimilate life through a Christological lens, a Christ-focused lens. Defined by and purposed by Jesus. Striving toward faithfulness. When we are and when we do, we will find that we are more and more consistent in our relationship with the One we call Lord.
Glory to God!