Journal Entry ~ 01/19/19

21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds,
22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,
23 if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister. - Colossians 1:21-23

Thankfully, Paul did not stop at who we once were, but continued on to who we presently are. “He has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him” 

We are reconciled to Him. While we once were alienated, we are now restored in our relationship with Christ. While we were once separated and broken, we are now made whole. Being reconciled to Him means we are now part of His family. We are His adopted children. He has chosen us, and brought us into a community of believers. We no longer need to face the heartache and the struggles of life alone. We have a community. 

For me, this is one of the most beautiful parts of His plan for us. There is an undeniable, yet immediate bond that exists between believers. I could walk into a room of believers, and within moments, feel connected and loved by a group of people who may have never even met me. The sad part is that this concept is foreign to those who have been hurt by the world. Many hesitate to allow themselves to be vulnerable around fellow believers, and so miss out on the community He has designed for us. The bond between believers is unlike any bond you will find in the world but you have to choose to be a part of the community. God calls His community to welcome without judgment, love without condition, forgive without limits. Few things have blessed me more than the community He has chosen for me. 

Secondly, Paul reminds the Colossians that they are holy and blameless. If we have any humility at all, we know that we are not holy and blameless because of anything we have done. A day doesn’t go by in my life where I am not caught in some sort of sin struggle - I am the furthest thing from holy and blameless. But I can rest in the knowledge that this is my identity when He looks at me. When he looks at us, He sees only the righteousness of His Son.

The sins that once defined us have been nailed to the cross. We have been forgiven and our sin has been cast as far as the east is from the west. So many of us struggle to release our past - we allow the sins of our past to define us. Paul reminds us that God does not see those sins when He looks at us. If the God who created us does not see our sin, why do we dwell on them?

Finally, we are now beyond reproach. This is critical for us to understand in our faith as we live in a broken world full of condemnation and criticism. There is no condemnation in Christ. We know from Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Many of us struggle against the condemnation of self, or the condemnation of others in our life, and we allow that condemnation to dominate our thoughts and define us. We are reminded here that were are beyond all that as children of God. We don’t have to own or hold on to any of that condemnation. It is not from Him, it is from the world. 

Our present identity is in Him. We are reconciled to Him, we are holy and blameless, and we are beyond reproach. These are the truths we need to hang on to when we struggle against the lies of this world. 

Press on ~ you are loved 💗


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