For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.  For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord's. (ESV)
The Christian walk of faith is counter-cultural. Far too many people view Christianity as some sort of club that we belong to that just makes us all a little better. We are in control of everything that we do, and occasionally, if it suits us, we will do what pleases the Lord. This way of thinking goes against the very clear teaching of Scripture.
We are not to live to ourselves, we live to the Lord. Think about that for a moment. Do you think that most Christians truly live out this truth? If we lived our lives to the Lord we would not be upset when suffering and persecution came our way. We would not be overwhelmed when the trials and circumstances of life came our way.
How about death? We are to die to the Lord, not to ourselves. What does that mean? The Apostle Paul is telling us that our lives belong to the Lord. Even our death is in the Lord's hands. This ought to be incredibly freeing to us. We do not need fear death! The one who has conquered death for us, and given us eternal life, dictates when we die.
When we are choosing what we are going to do with our career we should be more concerned with what God wants us to do, not what is going to give us the most money. When we go through life's challenges we should be more concerned about God getting glory than ourselves getting temporal happiness. When we consider our mortality, we can rest in a heavenly eternity.
Our you living for yourself? Or are you living for the Lord? If you are truly a Christian the only thing that matters is what God wants for you. It is a matter of life and death.