Sometimes life is a chore. Sometimes everything we touch breaks. Sometimes acts of discipline do not come as easily as they usually do. Sometimes we repeatedly fail.
And I want you to know that is okay.
During these time—and at all times—we must see ourselves as the Lord sees us. We must be aware of who we are in Christ. In the flourishing times, this may require humility to recognize it is Christ. In the straining times, this may require confidence to still believe that it is Christ. But in both times and for all time, it is Christ because that is who God sees when God looks at us.
For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.
Christ defines our perception of ourselves. And that perception is not so challenging when everything is going well. But even when I feel far from God, or I am on the verge of cracking, I continue to see God’s loving-kindness. It is often subtle but no less present. It is often gentle but no less powerful. And when you see God’s loving-kindness amidst your miry situation, you will remember God’s perception of you.
And God’s perception of you is Christ.
But even before God’s perception of you was Christ, He loved you no less. And suddenly when we become gripped with God’s perception of us, the mistakes we just made; the flaws we notice; the uncertainty we feel; the disdain we experience for our weaknesses are placed in the context of Christ. And in the context of Christ, our flaws become secondary because we know our Lord is not finished with us yet. And the Christ that God sees in me is exactly who I am becoming—exactly who you are becoming.
Our Lord is our grace. And because our Lord does not change, the truth that our Lord is perfection for us will not change.
Throw off your disappointment in yourself. Stop relying on yourself to live a life that you cannot—it is only through Christ living in you that you can. We are disappointed because we rely on ourselves. God has freed you from that shackle.
Trust, trust, trust that it is God working in you. Trust that it is Christ that God sees in you. Trust that God is not finished with you yet.
Praise God that we are free. I pray you release the burden of becoming who Christ called you to be because that burden rests with God. Praise God that we are hidden in Christ, and that God is responsible for completing that work in us.
“For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.” (Colossians 3:3 NIV).
“[B]eing confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6 NIV).
“And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.” (Romans 11:6 NIV).
Please forgive me. I have absolutely discriminated against non-coffee drinkers. My peace offering is hot chocolate with sweet, sweet succulent marshmallow hearts. No matter how weak I think you are for drinking hot chocolate, you are no less my Valentine.
Much love to you,