As I said in my last post, I feel like I have an amazing picture of the reality of Galatians 2:20: I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I think the Spirit gave me this example and an object lesson of this scripture. It’s pictured in the books of the Gospels. While each of these books is the inerrant Living Word of God, each nonetheless maintains the individual expression and personality of the writer. These Gospels came through men, and these men’s individuality can be seen as clearly as the men themselves.
This is a paradox extraordinaire, but it is also a major clue into how our lives can be, as I like to say, “Christ’s life as my life is His life in my life, and that’s not my life as His life, it’s HIM.” I am so excited about this revelation because it is illuminating and empowering!
Judging My Life, His Creation
My judging of myself and criticizing who I am, or am not, is debilitating. Labeling myself and then confessing that label is utterly destructive. “I’m so stupid! I can never do anything right! I’m ugly! I’m such a failure!” Whether I formulate these judgments from the opinions of others or it’s my own disapproval for my failings, these opinions capture my life and prevent me from being who I am in Christ. Placing faith in opinions, whether my own or that of another, circumvents my actual reality—who Christ says I am.
Christ designed me with a personhood, which He has matched in His plan and purpose for my life. When I hold myself to old opinions of myself, I derail the reality of the true me. I am who Christ says I am and my life is His Life. Like the example of the Gospels, I am not lost in His expressed Life through me. It is me, while being Him. The Book of John is all God, expressed totally through John. John the person is visible, while God’s revelation is not obscured. This is the way it is in me. His Life can be my living expression, while still being me. Now I am not saying that my life is infallible like the Gospels, but I am saying my life can be all Him. I have the choice, but leaving my opinions of myself is a must.
My Life: Cookie Cutter Reality
Here is another simple visual to express the reality of the indwelling Life of Christ as seen through us. When making cookies through a cookie press, the shape of the form comes through a tip. This makes different shapes, from ribbons, to stars, to dollops, but the dough and substance of the cookie is the same. The shape is expressed through the individuality of the tip, but the substance of the delicious cookies is the dough-life. Likewise, God is the source of our life, and it is His choice to bring His Life through us. I can at any point choose to believe my opinions over His idea of me, but this is not the victorious Life.