Thursday, November 13, 2008

Not Just In My Heart

Jesus: please be, not just in my heart, but in my mind, my hands and my lips; even in the least obviously significant corners of my being. Baptise me; fill me, full of you Lord.

I need Christ; not me and my ways, wisdom, or effort. I need his love to flow from the pores of my skin, and through my tongue and fingertips.

The fruit of the Spirit is a natural result of him in me. I realize that I cannot afford to go one day without being before him and inviting him; begging him, to come and fill me up with his dear self.

I am tempted to use the word "suddenly" and say that I suddenly have so much more clarity on all of this, but of course it hasn't been sudden, but a persistent seeking to understand over time. I have been a slow learner!

Verses that previously puzzled or perplexed me and seemed impossible to live up to, now make sense. In fact, it is as exciting as seeing the world through a new pair of glasses. I can't live up to them, but he doesn't expect me to be able to. He only asks that I know him, and let him fully occupy the land of my life and then he will live them through me. For instance:

Matthew 5:48 (New International Version)
48Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect

Would he ask something of us that is as impossible as that sounds? If we read it as meaning that we have to do the work we are undone before we start.

John 5:39-40 (New International Version)
39You diligently study the Scriptures because you think that by them you possess eternal life. These are the Scriptures that testify about me, 40 yet you refuse to come to me to have life.

Watchman Nee writes in his book, The Normal Christian Life, p.181:

God will not give me humility or patience or holiness as separate gifts of his grace. He is not a retailer dispensing grace to us in packets, measuring out some patience to the impatient, some love to the unloving, some meekness to the proud, in quantities that we take and work on as a kind of capital. He has given only one gift to meet all our need: his Son Christ Jesus. As I look to him to live out his life in me, he will be humble and patient and loving and everything else I need in my stead.

1 John 5:11-12 (New International Version)
11And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life

This means that I am free from both credit and condemnation. Mainly I am free!

Come Lord Jesus--fill me with your love. Be love in me, be patience and gentleness, kindness and humility in me.

8 comments:

MARILYN said...

What an empowering reminder you've given, Belinda! Thank you. It's a great truth to grasp, that the gift is not parceled out, but fully present. "Lo, I am with you always," were Jesus' parting words. Parting words sum up the thing we want people to remember.

I especially like what you said about being free from both credit and condemnation. May neither have power!

Melanie Yardley said...

this post reminds me of Galations 5:1, "It is for freedom that Christ has set us free" We are free to live our lives holy, with Him permeating out of us in every area, (unfortunately, the scripture in Matt 5:48 trips us most believers, it isnt through our 'trying' it is through our 'relaxing' in Him) thanks for the encouragement :)

Angcat said...

What a wonderful reminder Belinda.

I have lived my whole Christian walk that way, finding the scriptures that I can never measure up to and feeling defeated most of the time, except on those very rare occasions when I do it well.

Then I quickly fall again and am condemned by my own failure.

But Hallelujah, that is not what Jesus intended.

"Christ in me, the hope of glory"
Col 1:27

Joyful Fox said...

Belinda,

Inspiring! I especially like the line, "I am free from both credit and condemnation". That truth is powerful. It's all His glory and our absolution of sin and guilt once we've confessed it to Him. Wow!

Belinda said...

Praise God for his gentle teaching that gets through to us eventually. The enemy of our souls distracts us from the simple truths that Jesus taught. He tempts us to busyness, the very thing that prevents us hearing God, and then he laughs and condemns us for that and we agree with his measure of us. Again I thank God for his gentle teaching.

Susan said...

Breathe, just breathe.

Breathe in - "Yah.." fill me Lord, with You.

Breathe out - "...weh.." and out go the things of myself, the things that encumber me and weigh me down.

Breathe in, more of Jesus.

Breathe out, less of me...

Night Owl said...

less of me sounds good...
does it ever get to the point where there's no me left? what exactly would my "shell" be without "me"?

Belinda said...

Dear Night Owl,
There are two aspects of who we are: the ego--the part that seeks its own interests, and the essence of who we are--our individuality, or personality.

I believe that we are set free from egotism, and die more and more to self as Christ fills us with his purity,holiness, gentleness and love.

I also believe that as he shines out through us, our individuality becomes more vibrantly alive than it ever has been. We aren't empty shells just full of God, but he dwells in us and with us in communion with us. Does this make sense?