2 Questions for Examining Our Affection for Christ

Light Bulb of ThoughtThere is no better way to assure a quality answer than to ask a quality question.

Asking careful, introspective questions is a key for anyone does not want to squander life with aimless wandering.

We seldom choose to waste our life. We simply cease evaluating our thoughts, words, actions, deeds, motives, habits, desires, and goals.

As the saying goes, “Only one life, ‘twil soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.”

If living for Christ is the only way to avoid a wasted life, we need a couple questions to use as heart-checks.

Two Best Questions of the Month
The two best questions I heard this month both ring with affection for Chris and stir up  oft-neglected introspection.

1. What is it that I want most when I am not craving Christ?

Al Hartman rocked my comfortable boat when he shared that question with me over the phone.

The question is tinted by an awareness of failure, yet it also is asked in hope, knowing change is more than possible. Sanctification is, in fact, inevitable for the Christian.

Behind the question is also an all-out passion to treasure Christ. It’s the kind of driving force that moves like a surge of water released from a dam, rushing to demolish anything that stands in the way.

It’s a surge that is only released by the Holy Spirit into a heart transformed by truth.

2. What things affect my affection for Christ most?

This question is derived from a short interview of Matt Chandler. He humbly explained his struggle to find activities that set his passion for Christ on fire.  And to eliminate the activities that snuff it out or damped passion for Christ.

“I’m trying to always be aware of what’s going on in my mind and in my heart, and what really stirs up my mind and heart towards Him [Christ], and what doesn’t.”

Now Answer
Carefully answer the questions, and couple them with prayer.

Remember, there’s no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. But there is honest confession, gracious forgiveness, and powerful transformation.

What’s the best question that you’ve answered this month? What questions do you use to evaluate your heart before the throne of grace?

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8 thoughts on “2 Questions for Examining Our Affection for Christ

  1. I think identifying blind spots is critical in moving onto the second question, because we could reform via positive affection for Christ while sabotaging our affections by neutral or negative affections.

    Great questions.

    • And the problem with identifying blind spots is that if we could see them, they wouldn’t be blind spots.

      The difficulty in finding blind spots alone highlights the importance of the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and Christian accountability.

      Good point about neutral and negative affections. Neutral often slides by easier than negative.

      Thanks for coming by.

  2. Thanks for the thoughtful post, Daniel. These are some worthwhile questions to consider. I’ve started praying/thinking on paper about the answers to these, and I’m sure there is still a lot more to dig out…

    The quote you shared by Matt Chandler about trying to be aware of what’s in his mind and heart all the time is something the Holy Spirit has really been pushing me to do all this year. It’s tough business this keeping a diligent watch on the thoughts of the mind and the intents of the heart, even being honest with yourself much less sharing it with others. The Spirit has revealed many different types of sinful thoughts, some that led to actions, and the sin of pride that kept them hidden for so long.

    I continue to rely on a passage He sent me a while back: “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5) Using this passage as a gauge has been very helpful (what in my mind or in my life exalts itself above God? is every thought in my mind obeying Christ?), and in the face of huge failure, the ideas in the first verse (our weapons are mighty through God and capable of pulling down strong holds) are wonderful truths to cling to.

  3. I have asked the question lately of “do I really want the things of Christ, or do I want what I find pleasure in?”

    Interestingly, when I am after the things of Christ, He IS what I find pleasure in.

  4. Jonathan, your observation reflects the promise, “Delight yourself in the LORD and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Sometimes the familiar hides the obvious from view… If we delight ourselves in Christ, then Christ becomes our delight– He IS the desires of our heart!

    And, Fellas, there is no neutral affection! Neutral is a figment of the imagination which, as Ruth reminds us (above), is to be cast down in the process of bringing our thoughts into captivity to obedience to Christ. CAPTIVITY! Does that sound neutral? Our affections are either for Christ or for something other than Christ. Be not deceived; God is not mocked. “Neutrality” is a mockery of God. We must understand this…

  5. Pingback: 2 Questions for Examining Our Spiritual Condition | Desire Spiritual Growth

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