This morning I feel reinvigorated by some simple thoughts and truths. I have been praying for guidance in a decision for some time and this morning had a much better answer to my prayers than the answer I was looking for. Instead of the circle yes or no response God reminded me how absolutely amazing my life is. Through no work of my own, and actually in response to a life hell-bent at opposing God, I have been given a new life in Jesus. I have been invited into the family of God, having been purchased from the bondage to sin I’d sold myself to and brought into communion with God through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. I now live a life in faith that the Son of God who rescued me by dying for me while I was His enemy, will certainly provide all things needed now that I have been adopted into His family. This Jesus that I call Lord is in fact the Lord of all creation through whom everything that was made was made by and for. This good news, in ways I find it hard to imagine, gets clouded out at times by the stuff of this world.
What I felt as all of this was pouring through my mind was that every problem I ever have has at it’s root at least one common cause: my trying to be God of my life again. While I know the truth of the gospel is that those who are Christians are redeemed– they are purchased back by God. For me this means that God is both my creator who made me once and has every right to my life, an he is by redeemer who through Jesus bought me back from my state of rebellion. So once again my life is not my own for I was bought at a great price. So it is that I say behind every argument I have with my wife, every selfish act I do, every lustful thought I have, every bad financial decision, every time a miss God’s standard for holiness– that behind each of these is that part of me that still wants to be or thinks I am God. That I have rights of my own. That my time is mine. That I can choose anything only because I want that thing. In fact the reality is every moment, relationship, opportunity, resource, and gift that I have isn’t mine because my life is not my own. They all belong to God an I am simply entrusted with them.
Now I can also argue as others have that we are our most human– our most authentic and whole when we live in this kind of trust and intimately dependent relationship with God. But for me (and I think many Western Christians) I need more to embrace a death to myself more than a reminder of how to be wholly me. I have grown up in the land of opportunity where I was told I can be whatever I want and I can do anything I put my mind to, and I blended this easily with the Bible which says that I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.
What I need more often than not is a realization that if God never does anything else good for me again He has already given me enough that I will be eternally, gratefully, devotedly, and unashamedly His. Every other good thing is only heaping blessing on top of blessing.
So, God I end saying that I seek your will out of obedience to you– in a desire to follow your leading wherever you want me to go for my life really is yours. And I pray for wisdom in faith that you who called me from darkness when I was still your enemy will not leave me hanging now that I’m your son.
Thank you for another day to try to get things right(er). 😉