Friday, January 29, 2016

It's Not the Doing

Recently I've been challenged with how much of life is being, not doing. Who I am--when the difficult times come, when frustration mounts and plans are shattered--who I am cannot be controlled or contained. I am who I am. The difficulty doesn't create anger, fear, doubt, bitterness and resentment; it reveals what's already there, in my heart. I can only hide revulsion for so long. It's bound to explode under pressure. I may ignore fear and cover it with false confidence, but it will sink deep teeth into my heart when situations race out of control.

What I say and do in the unexpected moments of life is nothing more than what (or who) I am. If I am humiliated by my response, that is the least of my worries. What others think of my outbursts or tendency to run and hide matters very little--because the root issue is my sin. It's the heart that seeks its own way, that demands independence and makes self-righteous claims. Such a heart offends the Great God of the Universe. How often do we get caught up in pleasing others and wanting our way (all at the same time), failing to consider how we--how I've--spit in the face of my Savior.  In that moment I am no different than those who walked past Him that fateful crucifixion day. I am more concerned with my agenda, saving face in public, my accomplishing my goals than offending the God who took on humanity, lived a humble life and died that I might know Him and live.

The snake on the pole--Jesus--the "Look and live!"--has been cast aside. Disregarded. In self-deception and a desire to "do," I have failed to "be." Until the inner me surrenders and is voluntarily overcome with Christ, who would live in and through me, I will fail without hope. I will cry without relief. I will wrestle without victory.

So this has become my mantra, "Not I, but Christ." When I fail and fall and sin--not I, but Christ. I am forgiven. I am redeemed, I am re-purposed. I can confess and move forward in faith. When I experience victory and blessing--not I, but Christ. He is the blessing-Giver, He is the Rewarder, the Provider. In every situation, in every relationship, in every conviction or success, in loss or gain--not I, but Christ. Why? Because it is not in the doing. It's in the Be-ing.

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (Galatians 2:20)