"What He ordains for us each moment is what is most holy, best, and most divine for us." Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Monday, January 14, 2013

"We Just Take a Pill"

The first thing I noticed when I walked into the little mom and pop restaurant was the table groaning from the content of breakfast sitting in front of the couple squeezed together on the bench overlooking the trough.  As the waitress placed yet another plate of pancakes in front of them, the fellow said, "I think I know y'all.  Don't you go to the gym?"  He proceeded to tell us that he had signed up back in September but had only been a couple of times but he thought he had seen us there.  We said we do in fact go, and the conversation continued back and forth, off and on, for the next 15 minutes or so as we took the booth behind them.  They  told us about their "business" and handed us a card.  It appears one can take this pill and then eat all or whatever one wants and still lose weight.  Dang, sign me up, I thought, as I ordered my one scrambled egg, 2 slices of crisp bacon and a piece of dry wheat toast.  Believe me, there was nothing wrong with my breakfast; it was very delicious ... but Barbara's sausage gravy over not one, but two,  grilled biscuits could be all mine if I just had one of those little power pills.

Call me weird, but this scenario is what came to mind this morning while thinking about abiding in Christ and of being alive in Him. You see, those who trust Christ as Savior truly do have a power pill -- the indwelling Christ who presents Himself to us as the Holy Spirit.  Very God of very God.  Yet here's the problem: we so often pop that holy power pill and stop there.  But to be a Christian is to change.  Conversion -- passing from death to life -- may be the miracle of a moment, but the making of a saint is the task of a lifetime.  I like what Maxie Dunnam wrote in Irresistible  Invitation: "The new process of saint-making is to work out in fact what is already dynamic in principle.  In position, in our relation to God in Jesus Christ, we are new persons.  Now our condition -- the actual life that we live -- must be brought into harmony with our new position."  

Yes, this new life in Christ is pure grace.  Big-time grace.  Grace of epic proportions.  And that grace is soundly enough to cover every sinful act we have ever even thought of doing.  But if we are to abide in Christ, if we are to be alive in Him, then it seems like some discipline just might be in order.  And I'm not just talking about sausage gravy.

... Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear.  Philippians 2:12

Just an ordinary moment...

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