Free In Christ

Finding Freedom in the Churches of Christ

The Next Phase

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I feel like I am entering the next phase of my walk with God.

I started out as a legalist who thought he was right with God based on His works.  God then rescued me from my arrogance and showed me the beauty of His wonderful grace.

Next, I took this grace that I had applied to myself and started to apply it to others.  Slowly, I saw more and more people as receiving the grace of God and I was eventually able to rejoice in this.  I learned that many more were saved than I had previously thought.

Then, I began to see how religion had enslaved me and many others and was able to see that God was offering me freedom.  This was a further application of grace.  Once you find out that you don’t have to earn God’s affection, you stop needing a religion to show you how.  I slowly stepped away from religion and now it is rarely a part of my life.  I never felt closer to Jesus than when I stepped away from trying to please Him myself.

Next, I learned about who I really was.  When you stop doing works to merit God’s favor, you have to figure out how you will live under grace.  You find out what had been hiding under the cloak of religion.  You meet your real self and realize the truth that you are as messed up as those you used to judge.  I had to figure out if I could live the way God wanted me to because of trust (or was I only able to be controlled by fear).  Did I really believe that God’s way was the best and did I really trust Him to take care of me?  I still ask myself this sometimes, but I find myself trusting God more than ever and doing things out of love rather than fear.

Now, I feel myself entering the next phase: showing this grace and love to others.  I, honestly, would be fine not entering this phase because it will be the hardest one of all.  This is because it involves people in a way that it didn’t before.  I am entering the phase of loving my enemies, praying for those that persecute me, turning the other cheek, giving my shirt when he has taken my coat, washing someone’s feet, and forgiving sins.  I am being asked to test whether I truly believe in the power of Christ’s love to transform people.

I have always believed these things as propositions.  If you had asked me “should I love my enemies”, I of course would have said “yes” but it is very different to believe that you SHOULD love your enemies then it is to ACTUALLY DO IT.  God is taking me to the ACTUALLY DO IT phase of my spirituality.  He has put the desire in my heart and now I am feeling real change.  It is exciting and scary all at the same time but if I want to be like Christ, if I truly believe the words that come out of my mouth, I must be willing to walk with Christ and live in His Kingdom way.

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Written by freeinchrist

July 28, 2009 at 2:58 pm

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