The paradox of us is that ‘Your life is not about you.’ The fixation that it is, warps our mission to the poor and our ministry to the church – because our good deeds arise from a deep-seated need to demonstrate our self-worth or to pay Jesus back for His cross or some other transaction that defines us among the money-changers rather than a person who is giving life because one is alive in the Spirit of Life.
Tied to demonstrating our self-worth through our work, we limit ourselves to the role of a slave. If in ministry we restrict our ability to release rivers of spirit and life because we are tied to the role of a worker rather than a priest-king of God’s life.
Paul urged all to live in the life not their own – the life that would make them their pure-hearted, true selves. ‘For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory’ Col 3.3,4 NIV. We may be accustomed to applying this to our life in heaven. Not really. True glory is demonstrated on this earth in the body as it was with Jesus who demonstrated the glory of God and the glory of man as Christ come in the flesh.
The mystery and paradox of Godliness is that we gain our life by losing it in Christ - with the result that while our life is not about us it is about us as sons and daughters of God.
In Galatians Paul urges us to be sons of God, not workers and slaves. Jesus said, ‘Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it’ Matt 10.39 NIV.
NO POINTS HERE
This is not about becoming martyrs or doing something you hate in evangelism to gain points with God. It’s about being born again as your real self – the self that has been envisaged from the foundation of the world and the self that is you as a son of God living out your destiny as a priest of God’s life. Richard Rohr observes that we may need to give away attitudes and beliefs that we hold dear in order to be the self that become alive and a life-giver.
“Authentic Christianity is not so much a belief system as a life-and-death system that shows you how to give away your life, how to give away your love, and eventually how to give away your death. Basically, how to give away—and in doing so, to connect with the world, with all other creatures, and with God.” (1)
We can live a Christian life as a phantom of ourselves. Then again we can live an uncontrived life as sons of God in spirit and in truth. Hidden in Christ we are revealed as ourselves. It’s not about the ‘Adam you.’ It’s about Christ in you.