01/14/16 ~ Midweek Meditation: Church Unleashed
“Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high…” (Hebrews 1:1-3a ESV)
“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20 ESV)
These scriptures, spoken through the agency of God's Spirit (the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead) reflect incredible truths that should give every waking moment power and purpose and joyful expectation. Knowing Jesus is in charge of the world should give us a nervous bubble of helium in our guts: seeing Him seated on high, leading His people out of bondage to sin, ruling the nations with an iron scepter. It should excite us, cause us to recklessly embrace and encourage our brothers and sisters and send us out into our offices and neighborhoods with great evangelistic fervor. But often, our experience is very different. (Honestly – the only fervor I’ve had recently was over a box of donuts someone brought to work) There are moments when I do think and act in response to the reality of my crucified and risen King, but I want it to be deeper, more frequent and more resilient. Don't you? I know I'm not alone when I read Philippians 1:27 (Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ) and feel convicted over how much more Jesus has for me as His redeemed child.
The Sunday service featured a life-sized throne and a royal scepter. Front and center, Joe and Jeff both referred to it and reminded us that it represented the truth of what has actually happened. As we move into this new year, what kinds of reminders could we place in our own living spaces to remind us of what has happened? What verses could we memorize and adorn our minds with that remind us of what is true about our reigning King? What new family habits could we adopt and what commitments could we embrace to make sure that we remember that Jesus is on that throne (and not us)? Pray about it. Get creative. Rehearse a coronation service with your kids. Put verses on the bathroom mirror. Let's face it, just one day is filled with enough of the world's twisted ways, our own struggles, and the temptation of the enemy to send anyone of us into a cynical and passive dive. We need reminders in our space and in our face every day! When the temptation to be reasonable, or realistic, or cautious or whatever we label our cynicism and our passivity, let us be reminded of Jesus.... “I saw in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven there came one like a son of man, and he came to the Ancient of Days and was presented before him. And to him was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages should serve him; his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom one that shall not be destroyed. (Daniel 7:13-14 ESV) And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” (Matthew 17:2-5 ESV)