My focus during quiet times with Abba this month is on the book of Colossians. The riches of this short letter are without end. Today my focus has been attracted to the that simple little phrase, “in him”. It is so easy to be focused on me in such a way that I barely notice Him. And yet what would I be without Him? Not only am I to be drawn into knowing more about Him, or to only have my attention diverted to Him, but to know that my existence has meaning because I am in Him. We do not walk in and out of the Kingdom as if it were a wild west saloon with swinging doors. Our life is offered up to Him, and we exist within His will, never taking a step without Him. In fact, if we wander away from Him, we die. He is our life-support system, without which we have no life in us at all.
He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. (Colossians 1:17-18) This passage is not about Jesus setting up rules for the church, it is about the Body being alive and under the direction of Christ. When we think things are falling apart, they’re not. Anyone who has submitted to Him is being held together. It may not look like we want it to, and He may shift things out of our control, but it is His choice. He has called us out of the land of the dead – not to abandon us – but to form us into His image.
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. (Colossians 2:6-7) We never walk anywhere or do anything where Christ is absent. If He were somewhere else, we would die. That’s how dependent we are on Him. Have you received Christ as Lord? Then live in Him. ‘Rooted and built up’ … Christ is your life-support system, flowing through your veins and bringing spiritual nutrients into your body to create the man or woman He intended you to be. I think these two verses are the theme verses of the letter. How often do we sip at the well of the knowledge of Christ when He calls us to gulp down bucketfulls as if we would perish without it? And we would.
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority. In him you were also circumcised, in the putting off of the sinful nature, not with a circumcision done by the hands of men but with the circumcision done by Christ, having been buried with him in baptism and raised with him through your faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead. (Colossians 2:9-11) We do not lack for any resource at all in our spiritual journey. Christ has cut away the power of the sinful nature. With the unexcelled precision of the Great Physician (Surgeon?) He has altered our hearts in such a way that they now will allow us to live. More than that, He has by this act entered into a covenant (agreement) with us and He will never fall short of the agreement. From death we were raised … trusting that God has the power to heal and give life.
Do we see our lives as dependent on Christ or do we relegate most of our religious thoughts to the church? What would be different about the church if we saw ourselves as hooked up to life-support (Christ) and that if we took one step away from Him we would die? Do we find within that concept freedom or bondage? or both? What does this say about worship? Can worship be blah or boring if we recognize that our next breath is only ours due to the life-giving flow of His blood? Are we arrogant enough to believe that we really do not need Him much? What are your thoughts?
***LINKS & THOUGHTS***
After being down over the weekend, 123Jesus is back up and running. This demanded many hours on the phone with tech support due to my ineptness at web design and switching web hosts and making some simple mistakes…and dealing with some tech support people who did not speak English.
We have no hurricane relief volunteers this week. Saturday we will have groups from Texas and Georgia roll in. Next Wednesday night Ross Jordan from Central Church of Christ in Dalton, GA will be our guest speaker.
Thanks for reading!