good news to live by

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.           Colossians 3:12-14

 

The third chapter of Colossians reads like this epic calling to real, adventurous living. From freedom over sins and old habits to radical ways of relating to one another, it proclaims that we have been created to live for something far more grand than the small details of our daily lives. It calls to us to not allow the size of our lives to be shrunk to the size of our struggles. It reminds us that we are new and being renewed.

 

Just read some of the opening lines of this chapter:

 

For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.    Colossians 3:3-4

 

Does that not move you to excitement?! Our lives—hidden in Christ. Appearing with him in glory!

 

Some days we need the reminder that we are a part of something huge; something truly epic and majestic. We are a part of God’s story—a story that spans from origin to destiny, from creation to eternity. This small existence, this brief moment in history that we occupy is not all we are. We are God’s own possession, his people, holy and dearly loved. I know me well enough to know that this alone—to be identified as holy and dearly loved by God—is powerful testimony of how I have become a part of God’s story of redemption. If my story were just my story, left for me to write alone, it wouldn’t include these kinds of words. I’m not capable of this type of purity or achievement. But God is doing it; he is involving us in his magnificent story. I’m so convinced that the biggest problem we have as the people of God is not that we ask too much of him, but that we often settle for far too little. His story stretches through all ages, out into eternity past and forward into eternity beyond the future. And he has made us part of what is his.

 

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.    Colossians 3:15

 

We can be ruled by the peace of Christ remembering that we are a part of something so grand and beautiful. We can remind ourselves and one another that God is working in the here and now, touching our lives with sometimes uncomfortable grace, creating in us something far better than anything we could ever accomplish, imagine or even desire on our own.

 

This is the message of Christ. May it dwell richly among us in our homes, as we work, when we play and where we gather in community. May we live as the new who are always being renewed. May we love as those who are loved by the Resurrected One. May we believe and also think as those who are a part of something much bigger and much more noble than our paltry little kingdoms of self. May we be the people of God, designed for his great purposes and led by his great power, for the glory of his magnificent name.

 

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