Survivor No More?
Are you a survivor? I am. I tend to use ‘survivor thinking’ in dealing with crises. Most of the time, I look at the situation and formulate a plan for survival emotionally and sometimes even physically. It is interesting that our verse for today and many other passages speak of dying to ourselves and giving our lives up to Christ, which would be the opposite of that, huh? Survivor no more; at least not in the way I was thinking.
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
Lift It Up High
I am reminded of the soldier who carried our flag, ‘the colors’ into battle in the American Revolutionary War. The soldier’s mission was to carry that flag up high and out front. He was unarmed yet in the heat of the battle. That soldier did not have survivor thinking. His main priority was to keep that flag up high so that the other soldiers could see it and keep their bearings. He would die to meet his goal if necessary but the flag had to be held up. When this soldier did fall in battle another soldier would stop fighting the enemy, pick up the flag, and continue the mission of the first.
So much more, we need to lift up Christ. Our priority is to be that others see Him and follow. As we lift up Christ – making Him the priority in our lives – others will see Him in His greatness and be able to get their bearings as He draws them to Him. A survivor mentality is just not part of the life we live for the glory of God. Dying to ourselves is actually the goal. However, in dying to ourselves, we not only survive, we thrive. Pretty amazing how God does that for us!
Let’s go to the verse:
“I have been crucified with Christ… “
He gave His life for us and He calls us to give our lives for Him in glorifying Him and walking in fellowship with Him.
“…and I no longer live… “
Our old priorities no longer matter. Our old wants and old desires are irrelevant and our old focus is forgotten.
“…but Christ lives in me.”
His priorities become our priorities and His wants and desires become our wants and desires. His focus becomes our focus and His focus is God’s (His) glory.
Living by Faith
“The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God… “
As long as we are physically alive our lives should be consumed by the faith God has given us and in that, we are continually dying to ourselves.
Where does this faith come from? It comes from God. He gives us the faith to believe in the Son of God. As we mature in Christ our faith grows. How do that maturity and greater faith come about? They come about as we seek to know God through His Word and through prayer. This is the new survival plan!
Know Him, Trust Him, Love Him
We are no longer to be living for ourselves as Christians. The better we know God the easier it is to do. The better we know Him, the more we can trust Him, and the more we will love Him. This brings the freedom to stop struggling for your survival and let Him have control. Then surrender and obedience is a pleasure and a joy!
“…who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”
The first thing to get into our heads as we grow in knowing Him is this: Holy Son of God – King of All – left His throne in the splendor of heaven and came down here to this sin-sick world, suffered greatly, and then He died for me… and for you. The very least you and I can do is die to ourselves (our selfish wants, desires, and priorities) and live for Him. He died so that we can live – in Him a life full of abundant blessing. He gives us a life we cannot even imagine or plan or prioritize.
Maybe my surviving is not so important after all, but that I lift up Christ, way up high, and know that I will die in the process. Nevertheless, when I die to myself He will live in me! Let’s lift Him up so others can keep their bearings!
Thank You so much, Lord, for loving us and drawing us to You. Thank You that we do not lose anything when we give everything up to You. Help us, please, to understand what it truly means to live for You and help us, please, to do it! Lord, help us to lift You up in the way You call us to so that others can see You and keep their bearings. I love You, Lord! In Jesus precious name. Amen.
Go Deeper Today:
2 Corinthians 5:14-15