Saturday, May 28, 2016

Can't do it on my own

Photo taken from The Vigilant Christian
If I had any question about getting good on my own, Ephesians 2:1-10 answers those questions once and for all.  Right there, in the first verse, under inspiration of the Holy Spirit Paul writes:

"As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins"

Dr. Wayne Barber explains that:

"The word dead in the Greek language is the word Nekros. It comes from the work nekus which means corpse".

The staff over at verse by verse ministries made a point that stirred my heart:

"Just as a corpse cannot revive itself to life, neither can an unbeliever revive his own spirit into new life." 

I could not bring salvation to myself.  Only God by His grace could bring life to my dead spirit that was separated from Him by my sinful condition. Then, I think about Colossians 1:6 that tells me:

"as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him"

This brings me to what is stirring in my heart today.  The idea that, just as I could not bring my dead spirit to life in Christ, in daily life I continue to be unable to bring about God's goodness on my own.  I need Him.  It is only by His power that I can change.

What does this mean to me, specifically and practically, in my daily life?

I keep struggling to speak words of God's truth and faith over my work situation instead of the words of overwhelm, exhaustion, and don't-want-to-be-there that keep coming to me. Perhaps the whole struggle is because I'm trying to do this instead of asking God to teach me how to rely on His Holy Spirit within me.  I'm reminded of Jesus' words in Matthew 11:28-30, I'm especially fond of the way Peterson has paraphrased them:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

Oh Heavenly Father, teach me how to walk with You and work with You.  Empower me to make time throughout my day to come to You. Teach me Your unforced rhythms of grace.

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