I have been redeemed!
I was once in bondage. I was once walking regularly in darkness and foolishness, according to Galatians 4:3~
"Even so, when we were children, we were in bondage under the elements of the world…"
But the Light of Jesus Christ shone into my heart and chased away that darkness~
The Spirit of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, freed me, according to Galatians 4:4~
"But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law that we might receive the adoption as sons."
I am no longer a slave, according to Galatians 4:7~
"Therefore, you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ."
And if I am no longer a slave, this means that I am no longer that old person.
According to Galatians 5:1, I do not have to be entangled by my past~
"Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage."
However, since I am still human and I'm not yet perfect, this means that I am subject to the temptation to go back and embrace that old person and those old ways. Sometimes, to me, this looks like the easy way because, let's face it, being a Christian is super hard!
You've seen a tree~~you've seen a tree and the inevitable process of the tree's changing seasons.
I, as a Christian, am like a tree. I have times when I display emerald green leaves and luscious fruit. A lot is happening with this tree. It's awoken from a long sleep and there are times when my tree is strong and tall and gorgeously shady.
I have times when the fruit rots and the leaves die and fall off…
My leaves fall off in certain seasons. This is sometimes preparation for my tree to go to sleep and just rest and relax and gather strength for a more fierce and busy season….
There are times on my walk when my tree is seemingly bare and stark, but I know that a lot is going on behind the scenes and new leaf buds are waiting to burst forth.
The hardest times in my life are the pruning times.
I'm being pruned. I'm always being shaped and formed, and branches that don't have fruit or aren't alive get cut off. The dead stuff gets lopped off~this is normal and healthy in a Christian's life.
As a human and an imperfect Christ Follower, I sin. I fall down. I revert back to old habits and mannerisms~this is a given….
But I no longer have to live there. I don't have to be known as that old person. By God's grace and the gentle mercy He extends to me, I can get up, brush myself off and start walking again, reminding myself that I am no longer under the law of sin and death.
I am not perfect and I will never be perfect, but I can still live a full and abundant life!
This natural human imperfection is NOT a license to live a sinful life. This human life is an opportunity to live in grace and mercy, and to extend to myself God's grace and mercy.
This Christ Following life is a process. I want to always be in a teachable state! I want those around me who see me all of the time to see progress in my life.
Although I will never be a finished vessel until the day that Christ calls me home, I want to be known as one who is striving for that goal of holiness with everything in me….
In every season of my life.