Saturday, April 4
The new you!
Scripture: Ruth 1-2, Psalm 53, 61, 2 Corinthians 5
2 Corinthians 5:14–15 Either way, Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. 15 He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.
Paul spends a considerable amount of this letter defending his ministry; this section is part of that defense. But in it, he says some profound things not only about himself and the other apostles, but about all of us.
Christ’s love controls us—other translations use the word “compels, constrains, guides, rules, urges, moves” us. For Paul, Christ’s love had become the motivating force in his life. Was it Christ’s love for him or his love for Jesus? No need to separate those—it’s both.
In Christ, all of us have died to our old life.
In Christ, we have received new life and no longer live for ourselves, but for Jesus.
This is the new you!
Are these things true of you? Do you want them to be?
I want to be controlled, ruled by the love of Christ. I want every word, every action to be motivated by His love for me and my love for Him. I want Christ’s love to mark my life so fully, so completely, that it would be unmistakeable.
I want to die to my old life. Even after 55 years in Jesus, I’m still thoroughly human and capable of sin! It’s a life-long process. I’m better than I used to be, but I still want to die to sin, and live for God. I want to continue to crucify my old life with its selfish ways. Off with the old! Still doing it!
I want to live for Jesus, not myself. Perhaps the most glaring part of the old me is my selfishness. I’m easily drawn back into that. I want to be selfless. I want to live for Jesus first and foremost—and then for others. JOY—Jesus, Others, You. It’s my daily reminder that this is how I want to live.
All of this is true of us in Christ. The challenge is living into what’s already true of us. This is the new you—live into it!
Prayer: Lord, I read this and it stirs me—this is the person I want to be. Help me grow into what you say is true of me in Christ.