I’m a husband. I’m a father. I’m a director of a non-profit marriage mission. These are just three of my many roles. If you ask me, though, about my life I will make this confession: Christ is my life. He isn’t part of my life. He isn’t only the Lord of my life. He is my life.
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 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. (Colossians 3:1-4)
In my role as a husband, I am determined that everything I do, I do in the name of Christ, for the glory of Christ, and in response to the command of Christ. In my role as a father and as a director, the same is true. Whatever my role – Christ is my life.
That’s why I set my mind and my heart on things above. My life is a mess otherwise. In fact, you would only describe my life as dead had he not raised me up. Why would I wrap my existence up in deadness again?
Russell Moore recently wrote, “The kingdom of God, both now and in the age to come, is ultimately about what Paul calls being “hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3-4) – finding your life and mission in Jesus’ own, not in fitting him into the kingdom you design for yourself. For too long, we’ve called unbelievers to “invite Jesus into your life.” Jesus doesn’t want to be in your life. Your life’s a wreck. Jesus calls you into his life. And his life isn’t boring or purposeless or static. It’s wild and exhilarating and unpredictable.” [“A Purpose Driven Cosmos,” Christianity Today, (February 2012), p. 33]
My own story, combined with the story of my wife, is about the exhilaration of operating a non-profit bent on turning couples toward Christ. I quit a long-term preaching job, cut my salary in half, and invited my wife to join me in service. This strong desire grew out of the pain we experienced when we made Christ part of our life instead of “being hidden with Christ in God.” Now, our days are exciting, unpredictable, challenging, faith-building, and purposeful.
I’ve put to death the old me. My arrogance, lust, impatience, cover-ups and so on, and so on, and so on… are in the grave. That old man regularly attempts a resurrection, but I am determined to kill him every time he makes a move. The love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control of Christ is my new way – my life. My mind is set on pursuing the way of the Spirit of Christ.
Since the old me is dead and Christ has raised me, Christ is my life. He raised me when I was dead in my sin. He’ll raise me after I’ve been dead in my grave. Christ will be my life then, too. Every resurrection is because of him – I am mine no more. And I couldn’t be happier.