A Year Older and a Year Stronger

I can be very self critical and the enemy likes to use that to discourage me from seeking to do more to bring glory to God. There have been times in my life when I was ready to quit trying to make a difference as the poor choices I had made weighed down on me. However, God revealed to me a particular scripture that has been a source of strength; a truth I can use to combat the lie of the enemy when I am tempted to be to hard and critical of myself and give up.

Colossians 2:6

As you have received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him.

I find strenght and guidance in 3 points contained in this scripture:
1. Receive Christ as Lord
2. Live rooted in Him
3. Be built up in Him

1. Receive Christ as Lord
The Greek word used for 'received' is paralambano meaning 'to take with you, to take charge of, to receive'.

Paralambano is so much more powerful than to just receive! Personally, I can receive something and then put it away, like a gift, even a precious gift like expensive jewelry or such. I receive it and then put it in its place or tuck it away in a safe place, not to be used except on special occasions or when the gift is needed in my daily life. But this word says to receive it and take it with you…to take charge of it!

Salvation is not receiving Christ and then setting that gift aside in ‘it’s place’. It is receiving and taking it with us. I find it easy to pull that gift out when things are hard, confusing or I’m at church…but God is telling me to carry that gift with me all the time. And not just holding it in a pocket, but actually taking charge of that gift in my daily life.

2. Live rooted in Him
Rooted is the greek word rhizoo, meaning ‘to be rooted, with the associative meaning that a rooted object is strong and healthy’. I love that image. Not only am I to be rooted in the Word of God, I am told that doing so will make me strong and healthy.

In past posts, we have explored the concept of being strong and healthy by feeding our souls with balanced meals instead of junk. This verse is another visual image given to us by God to drive home this same concept. It is the roots of a plant that keep it firmly planted in the ground as well as providing nourishment to the body of the plant. That nourishment is found within the soil that it is planted. We are to feed our roots on the living Word of God; Jesus Christ.

3. Be built up in Him
Think about a healthy physical body that is built up (or as we say… ‘bulked up’). When we fill our body with healthy food and exercise that body…we get built up in physical strength. When we fill our soul with healthy food, the word of God, and then work out our life using that knowledge, we are built up (or bulked up) in Him.

I used to think I couldn’t serve God until I was a mighty woman of faith…bulked up in Him if you will. At some point I realized that God wasn’t asking me to become a Christian wonder woman before I could be used by Him. I realized that that the wonder woman in me was the power of the Holy Spirit and He was asking me to feed myself on His word to draw more on that power in my day to day life. It was in the exercise of going to God when I was caught up in the circumstances of bad choices that I developed stronger muscles for the future work He has planned for me. I was 'bulked up'!

So the truth that combats the lie of an enemy that wants to stop me from succeeding in pleasing God is to put together 1,2 and 3!

We receive Christ, not as a gift we take with joy and then put away to ‘keep safe’ or even forget about. No, we are to receive it and then allow it to take charge of our lives; to live our lives in Him. And then work out our salvation; a spiritual 'work out' that will build up our spiritual muscles.

In 2008 I made good choices and not so good choices, but my spiritual workout has made me stronger as I go into 2009. My roots are firmly in Christ and I am letting Him take charge of my life. How strong and 'bulked up' I will be at the end of 2009 is something God knows and I will find out!

God Bless and Keep You,

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