Psalm 139 declares the all-searching eye of God. God sees me as I really am and arranges my circumstances to show me just how much of the life of His Son is living in me………or not! When my toes are trodden on, when my will is crossed, when I am bumped, then I reveal just how much of Christ is living in me. The Holy Spirit pinpoints areas where I need to humble myself, not wallow in condemnation but allow the true work of repentance to bring forth fruit to God’s glory. As I walk in humility and humble, I die, but then the resurrection life of Christ comes forth and replaces that old fleshly nature of mine. Divine replacement therapy takes place and Jesus is given preeminence in me. If I am struggling it is because I am resisting God. Scripture declares: “….the way of transgressors is hard”, Proverbs 13:15. Jesus reveals the way we should live in surrender to Him. He ever calls us: “Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and ye shall find rest to your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light“, Matthew 11: 28-30. When I resist God I begin to struggle and feel strain. When I surrender to Him I discover the truth of Jesus’ words quoted above. I can experience God’s peace in my heart, (the life of Christ in me), even in the most difficult of circumstances. Here I find His strength enabling me to “live and move and have my being” to His glory, (Acts 17:28).
Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me, and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me”.
My problem is the “I” in my life. It is not the fact that Christ lives in me. The Holy Spirit does the living of “Christ in me”. Where I am not demonstrating the attributes of Christ’s character in my life, it is because I am not allowing the Holy Spirit to have His way in the circumstance. The “I” in me is refusing to die and wants to rule my heart instead of Christ. When the Holy Spirit impresses something on me, speaks to me, as I obey there will be fruit in my life. Jesus declared that a good tree is known by it’s fruit, (Luke 6: 43-45).
A lady was studying a rose in her garden. As she smelt the fragrance and admired it’s beauty, she said to the Lord: “Lord, You surely made this rose so beautiful!” “Yes”, replied the Lord, “It didn’t resist Me”.
Paul said, “For me to live is Christ, to die is gain”, Philippians 1:21. Every time I choose to die to the “I” in me, then Christ lives in me manifestly, bringing glory to Jesus.
When I entered into salvation at the beginning of my spiritual journey, I became “in Christ” positionally. The more I surrender to the work of the Holy Spirit in my life is where I am actually. The goal is the eternal purpose of God bringing us to the fullness of His Son in us: Ephesians 4:13 “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ”. The journey from measure to fullness is incremental according to my daily “dying” choices.
Brother Lawrence was a 17th century monk who believed in “the practice of the presence” (a booklet is available with this title). He believed that in every situation and whatever task he undertook, ( no matter how menial), that he could develop an awareness of God’s presence. Most surely this is what our Saviour had at all times. The more I live in that awareness of God’s presence, the less likelihood of my “I” manifesting, and the more of Christ in me will be seen by others. When Jesus is lifted up in a person’s life, others are drawn to Christ and the kingdom of God is extended, all to the Father’s glory.
In the midst of all the chaos, confusion and ungodliness in the world, God is still working with the Body of Christ to bring them to all fullness in the stature of His Son. Will I, will you, be one amongst that number that will fulfil what God has declared? We all have daily choices in responsibility to advance the work of the Holy Spirit in our hearts and lives – this is our part. As we bow, God in His sovereignty, will do His part that only He can do.
God’s sovereignty gloves human responsibility.
Let us give Jesus preeminence in all matters concerning us, as we seek the Giver of all gifts for Himself, and not for His gifts. May we seek to encourage and lift up one another as we become “fitly framed together” in His body, the Church. In this position we become a living demonstration of “it is no longer I that lives, but Christ that lives in me”. All hail, King Jesus!