Restoring Our Christ
By: Rev. Suzie Chamness
Paul charges in scripture that the spirit of Christ will set us free. I believe that is the way God redeems people. The Psalms speak of the love of God. In Hebrew, the word love means "an eager and ardent desire" and refers to the fact that God's love is always available.
The thing that sets us free from emotional hang-ups is the unconditional love of God. That is what God's love does. It accepts us without reserve. No one is turned away. We are valuable. We can be real. We are not focused on another’s idea of who you are. It means what we believe and are learning is taken seriously. We can talk about how we feel and know God really cares.
Acceptance says we can express challenging thoughts and discuss them intelligently. We are allowed to disagree without fear of judgment. God begins molding us to be what we are longing to be and who God’s knows we can be.
Some of us experience restlessness. We have been uncertain about life. After we tried most everything else, we finally came to realize God is more of the answer than anything we have ever come across. And when we came to that realization, God led us. God leads us to a place to dwell in, until we can reach the place of security. It does not happen overnight.
Some of us are finding all this true in our lives. Gradually, step by step, as we walk with God we are led to a new place of joy and excitement. The person who is trying do it all by himself is really in trouble. It is a difficult life. Remember when Jesus appeared to Saul on the Damascus Road, he said to him, "Saul, why are you so cruel to me."
Of course, Saul didn’t know it was God and Saul had been trying like most of us to do the best job he knew how. It isn’t easy to do this. It is agonizing, exhausting labor to try to make a life from our own resources. We often end up prisoners, bound by our own ideas of work. But then when we allow God to help, She does not say, "All right, you've made your bed; now lie in it. You made your decision; you took your own course, now it's too late.”
Instead, our eyes are opened so we can see what we are rebelling against is our reality; that the words of God are not imposed on us to give us a bad time. God words are a revelation of the way things can be. That means when we are in a relationship with God we find power to act as never before. It means that though we may be having some troublesome times, we can bring our problems to God.
It does not mean we will have it easy all the time, but it will seem less difficult when we commune and work with God. We can challenge life on a different basis. In Isaiah it says, “there is no peace.” If you do not have peace it is often necessary to learn that we will live without challenges and difficulties.
Jesus is called the Word of God, the Living Word, the Logos. "He became flesh and dwelt among us." He came to live where we live. Thus when it says that God sent word and healed them, it means that in some way he moved right in.
He identified with them. He did not reject neurotic people, he moved right in beside them, put an arm around their shoulder, and said, "I understand; but let me show you what's causing this." And with his word he healed them. Jesus said, “you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free," (John 8:31-32). How wonderful is that? How often we are set free as we begin to understand the truth about ourselves and about life through God.
When we go to God, we walk in the fullness of strength and begin a relationship. We enjoy God’s presence and we are rewarded. God sends us the things we are looking for. Our needs are met, our heart is satisfied, and we are filled with good things. Our prayers do not go unanswered for God moves to meet our need and we are protected.
We are protected and sheltered as God uses adversity and prosperity to accomplish work through us. We begin to understand God and relate as we see those things that are and we are not bothered by them. As Paul says, "I have learned whatever state I am therewith to be content." Whether I am abased or abounding it does not make any difference, he says, because God knows what is going on.
Rev. Suzie Chamness serves as the Interim Pastor of Spirit of Life MCC in New Port Richey, Florida. Contact her by email at revsuzie-at-spiritoflifemcc.org
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