Skip to main content

Christ IN you - the hope of GLORY

If you have ever played that little game known as "telephone", you know how convoluted the message given by the first person can become by the time it reaches the last person in the line.  The first person whispers the message into the ear of the one right next to them, then that one passes it along in similar fashion to the next, and so on.  By the end, sound alike words get all mixed up and are often replaced, such as banana become bandanna, or rogue become road.  Those tiny differences change the entire message and we usually have a hoot about the final message as it is repeated.  In essence, you might say the person at the end (and those in between) did not receive the complete message.  Really, they did, it just got mixed up because what one person "thought" they heard was not what was said.  This is why it is important for us to take the messages we hear "about" God right to the scripture ourselves to figure out if this is really something he would do, say, etc.  We validate the message heard so we can produce valid actions aligned with that message.

God’s plan was to make me a servant of his church and to send me to preach his complete message to you.  For ages and ages this message was kept secret from everyone, but now it has been explained to God’s people.  God did this because he wanted you Gentiles to understand his wonderful and glorious mystery. And the mystery is that Christ lives in you, and he is your hope of sharing in God’s glory. We announce the message about Christ, and we use all our wisdom to warn and teach everyone, so that all of Christ’s followers will grow and become mature.  That’s why I work so hard and use the mighty power he gives me.  (Colossians 1:25-29 CEV)

God doesn't just send us "messengers" with the Word of God as the sole means by which we will embrace and walk in his ways.  In fact, he uses these messengers to bring us "some" enlightenment, but the greatest enlightenment we can have is when we come into that place of light ourselves.  I have often talked about the importance of each of us getting familiar with what is in the scriptures ourselves.  Why?  Primarily so we can be blessed by the goodness in there, but also so we can be kept safe from the teaching which veers from actual truth.  In times past, the scripture portions were kept in special places, stored away from the common eye simply because it could not be reproduced in mass quantity and it was produced on papyrus or the like.  This required "teachers" or "rabbis" to expound upon the content of the scripture after reading the passages to the public in attendance "at church" that day.  As Christ came on the scene, things began to change, though.  His intent was for all men to become familiar with the "good news" - the message of the gospel.

His purpose was to reveal the truths of scripture, in living form, so all mankind, not just a select few, could become acquainted with the truths of God's goodness, his love for all mankind, and his plan of salvation / restoration.  In turn, we were asked to continue this message (not in "telephone" fashion, though), allowing those within our "circles" of influence to also become acquainted with the truths of his goodness, grace, and love.  The mystery: God lives in us through the work of Christ Jesus.  Since he lives in us, we share in his glory.  Now, that is good news, isn't it?  We no longer have live life second-hand, through the teachings of another, but can become personally acquainted with God's grace through the work of Christ within us.

The purpose of sharing God's message is twofold:  1) So others may come to know the good news of God's plan of salvation; and 2) So we may grow in grace and become mature believers.  Hopefully, when I share truth with you, you don't trust it at face value.  You should explore the scriptures for yourself - asking God to show you if the truth I teach aligns with the principles taught there.  If not, reject it.  Run from it!  If it does, accept it.  Run to it!  This has been the plan since the beginning of the New Testament Church - God prepares individuals to help spread the gospel message - the message of GRACE, LOVE, and RESTORATION.  In turn, those who receive this message become messengers of this truth through changed lives, maturing in God's grace and love until others see the revelation of Christ IN you!

November 9, 1972 - the day I said "yes" to Jesus in my life.  That day, I asked God for a scripture to hold onto - he pointed me to this passage, calling out verse 27.  Why?  My life was going in the wrong direction and I knew without a real "intervention" of some sort, I would be swept up in actions which were going to produce nothing but sorrow in my life.  I needed hope and God directed me toward the hope I have held tight to all these years - Christ IN me is the hope of HIS glory shining through!  It is the hope of my life remaining on course, kept from the path which would only bring destruction and heartache. Nothing else could do the same for me - nothing else could produce the results his presence has produced.  The same is true for you - if you will embrace this message of hope.  God's grace awaits those who will seek it!  This is the message - this is the truth.  Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce