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Dear COA Family,

There is a tendency for many to do just enough to get by in life. This means endeavouring to meet the minimum standard in order to enjoy the privileges.

For example, a student could just study the minimum in order to meet the passing grade. After all, there’s no need to obtain a distinction if all you are after is the certificate. With that, you would be “qualified” to apply for the work you are aiming for.

Another example could be in the working world. Those in the construction industry, for instance, may perform the minimum requirements just to deliver the product. There is no motivation for them consider the long-term needs of their clients as long as they receive compensation for their labour.

There is a danger that this kind of thinking can creep into our Christian life.

Someone has commented to me: “Pastor, what is the minimum I can do to get into heaven? Would this be praying the sinner’s prayer? After all, the thief of the cross entered into paradise simply by acknowledging the lordship of Christ as his dying breath. So, there’s actually no need for baptism or church attendance, much less to serve others in church ministry!”

Such a thinking actually betrays our true priorities.

Perhaps what we may be really after are the things of this life: how we can succeed, prosper and have the fullest enjoyment and pleasures here on earth. We are not so concerned about our lives to come.

So, my reply to that comment is this: “Why would you want to get into heaven in this way?”

If heaven (which is eternal life in close relationship with God) is the goal of our lives, then we should not be doing the minimum to get into heaven.

Instead, we should be paying the greatest attention and committing our fullest efforts to our preparations here on earth, so that we can excel in our lives in heaven!

May we be like the Apostle Paul, who says in Colossians 1:28-29:

“He is the one we proclaim, admonishing and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone fully mature in Christ. To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.”

In other words, he will never be satisfied with the minimum effort to get by with God.

May we all too be imbued with such an attitude so that we can strive to please God fully in all we do!

Have a blessed week ahead!

Revd Ian