Glass half ______

Romans 8: 29

For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

So, is your glass half empty or half full? I find there are two very distinct classes of Christians. There are those who are fully cognizant of their faults and short comings and those whose eyes behold who they are in Christ.

Half empty glass Christians are very focused on their failures and even their sins. Half full glass Christians, while aware of their imperfection, choose to focus on the one who is perfect. Can we one day be all too aware of our faults and the next be fully persuaded about Christ’s victory in our life? Sure but I find that people tend to reside in one philosophy or the other.

I want to encourage you to see who you are in Christ and abandon the glass half empty approach to Christianity. The glass half empty people constantly look at their mistakes, their faults and their weaknesses. “Let the weak say, “I am strong!” (Joel 3: 10 Amplified). There are two problems with the theology of constantly looking at our weakness. First, it is not Biblical. Though we know we are weak, though we know we are flawed we are supposed to declare “I am strong” because our strength is in our Lord.

The other flaw in this approach is that it is self-centered instead of being Christ centered. We are supposed to have our eyes on him, not on ourselves. We have to get us off of our minds and put our thoughts on Jesus and the glory of what he has done for us. The scripture says that we are the righteousness of God in Jesus (2 Corinthians 5: 21). Why are we calling ourselves wretched and sinful when God calls us His righteousness?

Sometimes this theology even goes so far as to harp on our sins and sinful natures. Well, isn’t that why God sent a savior? We were lost with no power to save ourselves but when Jesus went to the cross he took our sins with him and nailed them to that tree. Jesus took the sin of the world and crucified it. Of course that doesn’t mean that we never fail but it does mean that we have been redeemed from the curse of sin, we have been restored to our right place with God and our sins have been washed by the blood. If we are saved, and we surely confess that we are, then our sin debt has been paid. We have been redeemed. We are no longer sinners but rather saints. To call ourselves sinners when Christ paid the price of our sin with his life is to throw his sacrifice in his face. It is like saying, “Hey Jesus, your sacrifice wasn’t good enough to clean me. I am a special kind of sinner.”

I know some adopt this posture as a form of humility but in truth, it is a false humility because it is obsession with our image of ourselves. True humility is to take our eyes off of ourselves and put them on our Lord and savior. Our thoughts and words should echo scripture and his great victory which we won for us.

You are the precious, redeemed, restored, sanctified, righteous child of the most high. Let your mouth talk about what Jesus has done instead of what you have done and you will find that your glass isn’t half full. It’s overflowing.

Abiding Life

Joel 2:28

And it will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind.

This pouring out is called The Pentecost. The record of this wonderful event is in the second chapter of Acts. God poured out His Spirit for all people. Jesus said of the Spirit, “That is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you” (John 14: 17). This is the purpose of the Pentecost, that divinity would come and make a home with humanity. This abiding presence is not limited to the Spirit of God though. It extends to the Father and the Son. In  John 14: 23 Jesus said, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make Our abode with him.” God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Spirit all want to make a home with us.

Jesus talked a good bit about “abiding”. His ministry, sacrifice and victory have made it possible for us to be united with the Father, Son and Spirit as never before in history. We are now to become one with the divine trinity. Our DNA is being replicated in the image of Jesus (Romans 8: 29). For those who will submit themselves to Jesus’ words and teaching Jesus moves in and takes up residence. We are becoming enmeshed, intertwined with the Father, Son and Spirit so that there is now no separation between us and the divine. We are becoming so integrated that nothing can tear us apart. “I am convinced,” Paul said, “that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love” (Romans 8: 38 God’s Word Translation). And since God is love that means that nothing can separate us from Him. 

This abiding in and with the triune presence of God is the key to our Christian testimony, outreach and life. Abiding in Him means that we shuck off the old self and adorn our new selves with the life of Christ which has now taken up residence within us. No longer do we have to will ourselves to act like a Christian should, no longer do we have to contemplate what Jesus would do in our situation. Now we let the life of Christ which is within us flow out of us and into the world. We put on Jesus and let his life, light and love reach out to other people. 

If you want to know if you are abiding in Him and He in you check your love walk. To the degree that you are others centered, that is the degree to which you are allowing Jesus to express himself. Put on Christ and let him abide forever with you.