20 “My old identity has been co-crucified with Messiah and no longer lives; for the nails of his cross crucified me with him. And now the essence of this new life is no longer mine, for the Anointed One lives his life through me—we live in union as one! My new life is empowered by the faith of the Son of God who loves me so much that he gave himself for me, and dispenses his life into mine! (The Passion Version)
If I were to recklessly sin and try to rely on the fact that Jesus has already forgiven these sins to get away with what I know to be sin, then I am proving that my old identity has not been crucified with Christ. I was just a pretender. I would be proving my true nature to God is not repentant and had not been changed. I would be letting God know by my reckless actions that I still go by my old identity and that part of me (or all) has not been crucified and surrendered to Jesus. Actions speak louder than words. God is watching our actions when we are convinced God isn’t watching us at all. Or else, we think that God loves us so much and has so much grace to cover whatever we do that we can fudge on what we know to be sin. We feel confident that God will let us by because we are His children and His love and grace will stretch to include what we want to think, do or be outside of His perfect will.
This proves to God that we only accepted Jesus because we didn’t want to go to hell. We wanted to use God for His golden ticket into heaven and then go on living the exact same way we lived before we ever accepted His gift of His Son, Jesus and His death on the cross.
For God this is like adding insult to injury. We use Him for our advantage and then dump Him when something better comes along.
In my walk with Jesus I am ever fighting off my old nature (old identity). It continually tries to raise up it’s head and take control of my life. The more sin I did in my old life, the more difficult it is to fight off in my new life. This process continues until I have matured enough in Christ that I can gain the victory far more easily, quickly and for a far more protracted period of time than before. This is where I am ever struggling to fight off my old identity and embrace Jesus rather than fighting Jesus and embracing my old identity. My fight lies within myself and not with Jesus.
But the dvl is ever present to encourage me to hold onto my old self. Prompting me, giving me opportunity to return to the girl I used to be. I try to make peace with her to appease her demands but she will have none of it. She wants me to return to old songs I’d loved as a teenager whose words do not reflect what I believe today. She wants me to feel the feelings of those moments and be seduced back into the entire lifestyle that went with those feelings. She wants me to read old books that I’d loved and remove the Bible from my list. She wants me to seek out old friendships and go back to the glory days of youth and she entices me with the good memories. But, I fight her because she never reminds me of the bad memories and the sound reasons why those old friendships are best left in the dust.
So now I pray when I hear an old song and I want to fall backwards into it like an old loved hammock. I pray when I meet a new person who is interested in friendship. I pray before I enter a bookstore and look for a new book to read. I don’t want to get tangled up in something that will take me weeks or months to get over. These are the paths that lead to dead ends.
It is that inner work of salvation which I must work out day by day while leaning, relying and depending on Jesus all along the way. If I were to go back to being the old me it would be like sliding down a hill that I’d been inching up for years. I would avalanche down to the bottom in a heap.
The good news is that as I have persevered in Christ for many years I have been blessed with quicker insight by the Holy Spirit as to the danger zones. My danger zones may seem ridiculously simple to another person but they are highly toxic to me. So, I press on and fight the good fight and know that in the end I will actually see the end result of my having done so. Because out of everything you can’t take to heaven with you, this inner work of the soul will go with. Like a body builder whose muscles are apparent to everyone, I believe that the hard and long process of cleansing my soul will have built something within me that I will see in heaven. It will be a work that Jesus will see and depend upon to aid Him in His kingdom to come.
I want my blinking in sunlight moments when I get to heaven and am blissfully ecstatic and this is the way I believe it is done!
Blinking In Sunlight….BLIS.BLOG…..by Janet Williams…..A BLOG TO SEE!