Newness of Life

I’ve been feeling a little weighty recently, so this is going to be weighty post. It’s just where I’m at y’all.  Sometimes I feel like I have a front row seat to the corruption of the world. And by that I mean, for whatever reason there are seasons when I am more sensitive of, or more exposed to, the effects of this fallen world. When I look at the world, I am forced to come to terms with how the Fall has impacted us. I see men playing god. I see parents heaping destruction on their children’s lives by stripping them of their innocence. I see men hungering for fame, power, and success. I see relationships void of affection or love. I see unborn babies dying for the sake of convenience.  I see consciences seared and a culture of self-exaltation. I see created things relentlessly and arrogantly taking the place of the Creator.
And then I see myself.  I would love to say that I am somehow exempt from all of this, but the truth is, I am a glory thief with a fierce inclination to exalt myself.  And in an effort to preserve myself, I crave for praise in any arena, i.e.,  my physical appearance, personality, dress, pictures on instagram, etc.
All of this is enough to make me feel like a fish out of water. To use an example from Keller, instead of flicking through the water like lightning, I am left on the ground exposed and vulnerable, gasping for air. I resist the truth that I will abound with life by submitting myself to God’s gracious rule. And I wonder, am I the only one? Surely not. Every human knows that this life is not the way it was intended, and Christians especially feel the weight of this even more. It’s a gloriously troubling thing.
Peter warns us, “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world,” [1 Peter 5:6-9].
[Sidenote: We are in this together, Christians. Let’s not play god and pretend that we are somehow exempt from the corrupt and sinful desires of this world. We are human. We need grace.] Continuing into 2 Peter, we have even more encouragement by this good word:
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire,”  [2 Peter 1:3 & 4].
Jesus has called us to a new thing. When we soak in his promises, we are set free from our slavery to sin and are free to flourish in slavery to our gracious, wise Creator.  I need to continually come back to the Gospel. I need to hear it over and and over again until I am renewed. We are loved in the deepest and most profound way. We are fully known, and yet fully loved. We are lavished with grace, lavished. Jesus has proved this on the Cross and now continues to intercede for us in his resurrected body. He has not left us as orphans, but has given us his Spirit to lead us, guide us, comfort us. We have God now and we have an eternity of God later.
When we allow ourselves to sit in these truths, we begin to live life the way it was created to be; we begin to experience newness of life. We need this newness of life ourselves before we can advocate for it in this broken world. Only when we grasp these truths can we be apart of restoring this world to it’s designed purpose. We must revisit these “precious and very great promises,” lest we forget; lest we lose sight of the glory that is right in front of us.

 

 

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