Monday, March 14, 2016

Hidden in Christ

Philippians 3:9
“and be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith.”

To gain Christ, and be found in Him. From the time I arrived in Antigua, nearly three months ago, ‘till now, my prayer has been that I would be wrapped up in the Lord and hidden in Christ. Colossians 3:1-3 says, “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things that are above, not on things that are on the earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” My desire is that when people see me, they would see Jesus; when they hear me, they would hear Jesus, and that before they get to know me, they must first get to know the Lord. That is how I want to be portrayed: a daughter who bears the marks of her Father; an image bearer of the Most High God, never fully attaining perfection, but always striving to be more like her maker. However, that mentality has gotten the best of me, at times. It has become, “how many good things can I do for the Lord, so that he loves me,” and it is absolutely exhausting. It is one thing to strive for perfection, but to be consumed with the idea of never failing, has caused me to forget the grace and love of Christ. I am not bound to a book of rules, or a list of impossible worldly expectations and standards. Although there are commandments to keep, morals to hold onto, and discipline given when I stray away, I must not forget that I serve a God of second chances. Out of the abundance of his love, God sent his son to take my place, my spot on death row, that I might have the opportunity to gain abundant life. Hosea 6:6 says, “For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.” More than anything in the world, God desires my heart. He longs to know me, to speak to me, and to spend intimate time with me. He loves when I serve him, but above all else, he just wants me. He wants to sing his resurrection song over me, gives me new skin and dress me in righteousness. I will never be good enough, but God is more than enough, and if my life is hidden in Him, my ashes are traded for beauty, and my worth shines from within. It is a beautiful and heavenly exchange, and one that requires me to allow God to pierce my flesh and invade my heart, tearing apart all of the wickedness within. Then, and only then, does healing come, and new life begins to bloom. But the choice is mine. Do I have the faith to come? Do I take God at his word, and believe with the fulness of my being that he will wash me clean and make me anew? There are times that I come running to the Lord, in desperation, but there are also times that I just want to run in the opposite direction. I am a fickle, wayward human being, and it destroys me knowing that I could just as easily turn my back on God, but I can’t forget. I can’t forget who God has been, who God is, and who he faithfully will be. God remains, always, he is the only constant in my ever-fleeting, ever-changing life. Jesus, may your voice move my feet to follow your steps. Let me not forget what a merciful and gracious Abba I have. I can’t do anything on my own, so may I lean into you and draw from the vats of your strength. 

Application: Today, I will write the word hidden on my wrist, and find quiet time to spend completely alone with the Lord.

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