Last night I woke up around 3am (never got back to sleep so I’m quite tired and cranky this morning) and I found myself reading this verse:
But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
I’ve heard people proclaim, when facing challenges, things like ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me’ and ‘No weapon formed against me shall prosper.’ These are biblical verses but I sometimes wonder if we really realize just how much power and authority is available to us through the name of Christ. It hit me on reading Romans 8:11 that we say we have power through Christ but we don’t often act or live as though we do. At any rate, I often moan about this, that and the other without paying any mind to what I can do through the Christ who is in me.
Think about it. The same Spirit that raised Christ from death – that very same Spirit – is available to you. What can you not do, what can you not achieve with that kind of power? The problem is not that we need some special password or key to access it, by virtue of accepting Christ as your Saviour you have all the access you’ll ever need. I listen to Graham Cooke (link opens in new window) often and in one of his sermons he said something along the lines of ‘Jesus is brilliant and extraordinary.’ Well, Jesus is brilliant and extraordinary, and if that Jesus is in you and you in Him, what are you but brilliant and extraordinary too? The Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead also gives you life, and not just life, but life in abundance. What can you not do? You no longer need be in bondage to sin or your flesh or anything else – you have been set free by the Son. Trust me when I tell you that therefore you are free indeed.
John 8: 34-36
Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. 35 And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. 36 Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.
Do you understand what freedom means? If you’re free you don’t act like you’re in prison, do you? Of course not! You carry yourself as one who can come and go as he pleases. By the same token, when the Son has set you free you don’t live as one who is slave to the flesh. When you know you have abundant life you don’t live as one who is lacking in any good thing. You must believe what the Word says and walk upright, confident in your victory in all things, over all things, for that victory is not only assured, but the battle has been fought and won already. You’re not fighting to be free from sin, you’re fighting to be free of the lie that you’re not free from sin.
This might be a difficult concept especially if you think of yourself as one who is ‘fighting’ his sin nature. If you’re fighting that battle then what did Christ die for? What happened on the Cross? No really, think about it.
What if you woke up and instead of fighting not to sin, you fought instead to live a Kingdom life, a life of abundance and freedom, a life of a resounding YES to every good thing?
What if instead of moaning about your finances and your health and your loneliness and your too-high rent (all things I’ve been heard to moan about by the way) you said ‘all things are working together for my good’ and believed that and talked and thought as if you believed it?
What if every time you were tempted you recalled that you are tempted to go backward, to a past that is as far removed from you as East is from West, and instead chose to reach for all that is pure and lovely and noble? Try it.
God will amaze you, surprise you, for no eye has seen and no ear has heard what God has in store for those that love him and believe in him.
January is, for most people, that time of year when we attempt to restart and refresh, when we press reset on our lives. I take stock twice a year -in January and around my birthday – and in 2016 I’m choosing to take God at His Word. Abundant life? Bring it, I’m here for it. He is faithful, I’m choosing to believe that He will not let me down. I’m choosing to believe His Word that all things work together for my good. Will you believe the same in 2016?