08 January, 2013
Claim The Christian Life Through His Grace!
Having been part of a Church where I was taught to learn to mimic godly behavior and I was also taught to pray for this Christian life, I could not reconcile what was going on in my life when God decided to move in and suddenly, inwardly, this life had become such a dynamic life. I was conscious of the fact that I had something alive in me; something was new inside of me. If it was not for the incomparable gentleness of the Holy Spirit, I would have been more apprehensive thinking that I was on my way of becoming schizophrenic. I simply could not understand why I was living literally with someone inside me.
It was only after I stumbled on A.W.Tozer book, “The Pursuit of God” that this Christian life made sense to me. Through it, I understood the realness of this life. I also understood, having surrendered my life completely, with no conditions and no reservations, few months back meant that I stopped praying for this life to happen to me. Instead I moved in to claim it through believing so that I could become part of it. Through reading Tozer’s book it felt as if my Christian life thus far was like I was holding onto half a dozen pieces of a puzzle, then someone came and said here is the box with all the other pieces. When I opened the box to put the half a dozen pieces I was holding onto, I found the puzzle was so big with millions of pieces. While the half a dozen pieces I was holding onto were important to complete the puzzle, but I would have never known what this puzzle was about with my few pieces.
You would make a mistake to think that this is no longer Salvation by grace. Because while I was sitting in the pews, learning to put into practice some sort of man made Christianity, I had never heard a sermon on surrendering to God, I had no idea that Christians could surrender to God either. I knew nothing of God, yet He stirred my heart. He provoked something in me that demanded an answer. In fact, I was so far from Him that even His stirring seemed unreal. What God provoked in me was so faint I was still looking for help to understand, so, I talked to pastors and elders. In every case I was dismissed. Only one of the elder dared to say something and it would have been better not to have said anything at all because the answer I received was to make fun of me with my surrendering idea.
When I share with you how spiritually blinded people in my Church was and how stupid I was, I do not do it because I take pleasure in it. Not that I want to belittle people that I love dearly. I share because it is not about me or them. I top the cake when it comes to stupidity. In fact, when I examine myself and see how deep I was in my stupidity, and how deep the depth of my spiritual darkness was, I cannot help but being grateful that He got hold of me in spite of me. When God delivers us from certain situations, He intends for us to share the blessings. At the end of the day, it is not about me or the ego of the leaders of the Church I used to attend. It is about Him!
Through going with Him and living my life in Him, I have learned, each step I took in surrender, claiming the holy life to make it my own, claiming oneness with Him, learning to be a disciple, beholding the truth, grow in spiritual maturity etc, are all One Blessed Continuous String of Grace. All the after effect of Salvation that I have received and continue to receive from Him, are the product of the work Christ has done on the cross. I was not aware of them, nor that I knew how to get anyone of these blessings to be inwardly mine. When we say “the old has passed away and behold everything new” this newness of life is deeper than we can possibly imagine and it continues daily throughout our earthly pilgrimage.
Beloved, at one point, we have to stop praying this life in us, stop hiding behind excuses, stop blaming our leaders, and stop trying to corner God to make Salvation fit into our neat little boxes. I can tell you without a doubt that God will not hold our religions against us. But, He will certainly hold against us the fact that we have not found Him was not His fault but our sins of pride, stubbornness and laziness. BELIEVE! This is the difference between the first “follow me” Christ said to Peter in Mathew 4:19 and the other “follow Me” in John . You cannot deny that Peter had become a new man to the point He was given to the Master completely and followed boldly His footsteps with no fear for his own life. He was not perfect, but work in progress.
It is all Salvation by grace through faith. We are saved! We are being saved! We will be saved! Oh! The beauty of it all. – I cannot wait to see Him!