Monday, November 24, 2003
- As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved.
- Ephesians 2:1-5 NIV
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
- Colossians 3:1-4 NIV
Another story from yesterday, this time: our bible study yesterday morning. We're going through a study on Kingdom Authority, and I felt like it would be a good time to catch up a few people who'd missed the first few sessions of the study (we're in the middle of a six-week course with book, daily work, etc). And we talked about submission to God, submission to each other, how we relate to people around us and why we're so lacking when it comes to "authority" as a christian. My big question was, "Is Jesus Lord?" Our mouths can say yes, but our hearts are often completely against that notion.
Maybe that's where my connection is coming from. For me, the lingering question "is Jesus Lord?" is tagging along with notions of gratitude this Thanksgiving. If Jesus is truly Lord, we should be that much more thankful, that much more honoring of Him as such. We can say the right things and even set the proper dinner table - but are we truly thankful? Pointing fingers back at me - am *I* thankful? and as much as it's up to me, is He Lord?
I was dead, and now I'm alive. And it's not just to be alive, but to be useful for Him - if He's really Lord. I'm saved, avoiding hell and all its punishments - but if He's really Lord, then I'm more saved to live out a life of gratitude, submission and authority in His calling right now, while I'm still here, while there's still stuff to be done. If He's really Lord - then my life is hidden in Him, and set on things slightly out of reach above us. In Hid Lordship, I'd be more about pursuing righteousness than thinking the former disobedient thoughts; more into holiness than how the china looks on the table.
I'm thankful. For my family, the blessing of people sharing my life and relying on each other. For my job, the gift of provision. For my church, a body & family of people pursuing Christ-likeness together. For this list and other 'net stuff, giving me a place to rant and chew up what God's really trying to say to His church. And since all of this stuff amounts to nothing, I'm grateful for Christ, the Lord. In Him, all things are held together and gain their worth.
And whether I say it or not, or live it or not - He is Lord. Life, more often than we're willing to admit or to surrender to, is constantly figuring out what that means.