Friday, April 13, 2007

dying to live

This week where I work at RBC Ministries, James MacDonald reminded us of what he called "the Easter Principle": that we are to die to live.

In Christ this is to live out the meaning and reality of our baptism. In Christ we are dead to sin and alive to God since we by God's grace through faith are participants in Jesus's death, burial and resurrection. This new life begins now in this present life.

As James pointed out we must die to our own visions, dreams and thoughts so that we can awaken to and live in God's vision and path for us. And he also reminded us that this death is ongoing. It's not just something we do once and it's settled. We must follow through and continue to live in that reality that is ours in Christ. We're all too familiar of stories of Christians who seem to have lived it out for years only to end badly. And we can see this danger in our own lives if we're honest or not deceived.

Whatever it is in our lives, good or bad or anything at all, we're to submit it all to God. Even Jesus himself had to do this (again, as James pointed out to us). We see this at Gethsemane when he died to his own will in order to live in the Father's will in dying so that the whole world and creation might live with and in him in the new creation. But it wasn't easy and neither will it be for us either, especially at certain times.

In this though, we find life, the very life of God in Christ and in the community of his people. A life which brings God's blessing to others and a joy that lasts forever.

What comes to your mind here that you would like to share with us?

7 comments:

Kim said...

Wow, Ted, are we on the same page or what? Here's my post from this last Tuesday:

I'm Dying

Allan R. Bevere said...

Ted:

Excellent post! We had a similar discussion today in Theology class concerning the inability of the Holy Spirit to work in our lives unless we give up ourselves nd our desires and our agendas.

Thanks!

Ted Gossard said...

Kim, Good post over there. I guess we have been thinking similarly and have some life similarity as well (I'm "51" sometime this month).

Thanks.

Ted Gossard said...

Allan, Thanks so much. Wish I could have been there at your Theology class.

We in Christ are in the Spirit and a part of that life is to put to death the (mis)deeds of the body and therefore live (Romans 8). So there's a putting to death going on that is a part of the normal Christian life.

Ted Gossard said...

That putting to death of the (mis)deeds of the body we're to do by the Spirit.

Betsy Lin said...

Ill be one to say that I struggle with pride- and letting go- I want to control everything- conversations, interactions, relationships- I hate accidents because to me it represents failure- and I make it reflect who I am.
Submission is the hardest for me-

Ted Gossard said...

Betsy Lin, I think it has helped me over the years to begin to see everything more and more as a gift from God. And to see that gift all around me, in others, as well.

It is so good that you see and acknowledge things in your life. In Christ who is the perfected image of God in humanity, we can begin to see the goal. And none of us have arrived. And it's important to remember we're all in this together. Alot of what you mention here has to do with community and relationships with others. It's great that this is a big part of your life! Thanks for sharing with us.