God's Love, Thursday Thoughts

Shame and Awe

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Galatians 2:20

There are verses that we know by heart, either because we have heard them recited over and over in church or because they mean something to us personally. Maybe it’s a verse that brings you comfort or strength in difficult days or maybe the words of a particular verse bring you joy and literally make your heart sing.

Today’s verse is probably well known to most of you and it was the very first one I used for these daily devotionals. It always gave me strength and courage to face any circumstance, knowing Christ lived within me.

When I read this verse again recently, something had shifted and I felt more shame than joy along with a sense of awe. I wondered if I could really say with confidence, ‘it is no longer I who live.’ In this last year I have been a lot more mindful of this shell of sin that I wear and of the fact that because Christ lives in me then he must also bear my sin on a daily basis. The flesh is a constant weakness; a weakness that I cannot always resist. This is the shame I feel.

Knowing all this, the Lord Jesus chose to dwell within my weakness and carry this shell of flesh, such is the depth of his love for me. This is the awe I feel.

We all have the opportunity to live in the freedom of this verse. Confessing sin the moment it occurs helps to keep it from taking hold and helps us recognise the work of the Spirit in strengthening the faith by which we live.

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