The longer I walk with Jesus; my Elder Brother, Lord and Savior, the more I need strengthening from the inside out! “Out of our innermost being flows the river of life.” This flow of life is more than abundant and it is always and only experienced from the inside out. And it always has its origin and power in the reservoir of Christ in me! So why do I seem to persist in my veiled attempt at living from the outside in?
16I desire for you to realize what the Father has given you from His own limitless resources, so that you may be dynamically reinforced in your inner being by the Spirit of God.
17 This will impact your faith with capacity to fully grasp the reality of the indwelling Christ. You are rooted and founded in Love. Love is your invisible inner source just like the root system of a tree and the foundation of a building. (The dimension of your inner person exceeds any other measure that could possibly define you.)
18 This is your reservoir of super human strength which causes you as saints to collectively grasp (come to terms with, make one’s own) the limitless extent of His love in breadth, in length, in height (rank), and the extremities of its depths.
19I desire for you to become intimately acquainted with the love of Christ on the deepest possible level, far beyond the reach of a mere academic, intellectual grasp. Within the scope of this equation God finds the ultimate expression of Himself in you (so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God).
20We celebrate Him who super charges us powerfully from within. Our biggest request or most amazing dream cannot match the extravagant proportion of His thoughts towards us. Ephesians 3:16-20 (Mirror Bible)
Destructive thoughts and habits lost their authority to operate in my life when I died together with Christ. And so now my victory is not related to my outside behaviors and efforts at self-control, but to the accuracy of my faith-sight and agreement, that I reckon myself as having died together with Christ and alive to God . Jesus is not now, nor will He ever struggle with destructive thoughts and habits!
Could it be any clearer? Our old way of life was nailed to the cross with Christ, a decisive end to that sin-miserable life—no longer at sin’s every beck and call! What we believe is this: If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection. Romans 6:11a (The Message)
Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Romans 8: 5-8 (The Message)
Confession is not only about agreeing with God about my sin and my need for a Savior; as if He didn’t know, but to tell sin about my God and my new innocent identify in Christ! And if you fall, we have an Advocate (Jesus Christ-The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world), and this Advocate has indisputable evidence that you are innocent (written in His own Blood). So, when you mess up, run to Him and not away from Him! Boy, have I been running toward him like never before!
7 But suppose we walk in the light, just as he is in the light. Then we share life with one another. And the blood of Jesus, his Son, makes us pure from all sin. 8 Suppose we claim we are without sin. Then we are fooling ourselves. The truth is not in us. 9 But God is faithful and fair. If we admit that we have sinned, he will forgive us our sins. He will forgive every wrong thing we have done. He will make us pure. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar. His word has no place in our lives.1 John 7-10, NIRV
1My dear children, I’m writing this to you so that you will not sin. But suppose someone does sin. Then we have one who speaks to the Father for us. He stands up for us. He is Jesus Christ, the Blameless One. 2 He gave his life to pay for our sins. But he not only paid for our sins. He also paid for the sins of the whole world.1 John 2: 1-2, NIRV
Following are a couple of the thoughts Papa has shared with me of late. These inner realities and words have beckoned me toward him without fail.
1. Keep forgiveness at the gate of your heart.
Why? Forgiveness alone frees us from the inevitable hurts, disappointments, anger and bitterness of life. It flies in the face of religious piety, pride and self-justification. It also keeps us from getting stuck in yesterday. Only his forgiveness helps me see what mercy sees! We are freed to forgive just like he forgives.
2. Never look back.
Always embrace the unfolding of grace in your life. Keep the true prize in sight and (as a good friend recently reminded me) if you feel like you’re going through hell; don’t stop, keep going! He will carry you through to completion and maturity.
Diving into the Reservoir of Christ, Ron Ross