Monday, April 5, 2010

A Spiritually, Miraculous Gift

We have never been able to accomplish salvation on our own.  We have never succeeded in rearranging our personal messes, healing our scars or even fighting our own battles.  Throughout human history, we have always failed.  We are weak and needy persons on our own.  We have no might…. .we have no power to perform it.  “Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord,” Zechariah 4:6.  The re-creation of the human being is a spiritual gift.  It is accomplished by the Spirit.  The human is known and made new by the indwelling Spirit.  
She couldn’t cover the skin that was burning.  She couldn’t shield her small body from the heat.  She couldn’t keep her own vineyard because the day had passed and She had spent her time in other vineyards, working for no pay.  She couldn’t explain the pain she was feeling.  She couldn’t defuse the anger she felt towards her captors.  She couldn’t wash away the shame and embarrassment no matter how often she bathed in the pool.  Ever feel this way?  Your condition seems to be stationary.  You can’t define the chaos.  You can’t wash away the shame.  The circumstances of life seem to make a fool of you day after day.  You can’t suppress your desire to demand your rights.  You are angry and the conforming pressures are pressing you to sin.  You haven’t kept your own vineyard.  You haven’t had the time or energy to keep your own heart.  What you need….. .is a miracle.
The apple tree She ate from wasn’t distant.  The cup that She drank was offered to Her by a compassionate hand.  It wasn’t hiding in a book on a shelf.  It wasn’t disguising itself with clever strategies and difficult feats of religion.  It was growing right in the middle of Her conscience.  God grew a tree to eat from in the center of Her heart.  If God dwells within you, you have everything you need…. .just eat.  BELIEVE the Word of healing He speaks to you.
Salvation is a miracle.  This is our best explanation.  How else is it possible that the mere speaking of a Word can make us clean?  There is no pushing or pulling.  There is no data or deadlines or lists of duties.  Very simply, God saw our conditions and chose to have mercy on us.  He chose to perform a miracle within us.  He chose to give us the gift of Eternal Life.  “For it is by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.  For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus…” Ephesians 2:8-10.  We are re-created in a consciousness of Christ.  By knowing Him and being known, we are cleaned, healed, restored and resurrected.  It’s a gift and a miracle.   We can’t deliver ourselves from the obvious mess.  But we can be known and brought back to life by His Spirit…. .personally.
The Creator is not wasting His time by trying to fix us up.  He is moving and weaving to lead us back to the first breath, the garden, the original words spoken over your life, “It is very good.”    So, a Savior has come to start the story over, “In the beginning God created…” Genesis 1:1; “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.  The old has passed away; behold, the new has come,” 2 Corinthians 5:17.  To breath a new life, “And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit,” John 20:22;  “By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit, “1 John 4:13.  To speak a new word, “Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you.” John 15:3;  “…as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of the water with the word,” Ephesians 5:25.

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