I trust God that I am holy and righteous. Holy and righteous in His eyes, I am free to do whatever I want and feel good about it. And my freedom to do whatever I want and feel good about it makes me who I am.
People hear this Good News and they are incredulous. They ask, “So this means you can just do whatever you want?” No, it doesn’t mean that. That question comes from the flesh, and the things it wants to do. The flesh thinks, “I have fire insurance. I can literally do whatever I want, no consequences! I’m saved!”
I can see how the message might sound that way. But think about this from a different mindset. Don’t think from your flesh. Think from within God’s family and Kingdom, because that’s where you live now.
In the world of the flesh, doing whatever you want seems fun at the time. But there are a lot of consequences right away. There’s a lot of pain. A lot of people get hurt because we let the flesh do the thinking. But at the very moment that you recognize what Jesus did, you are saved by the Spirit of God. Now your identity is in Christ. That identity is holy and righteous. Holy and righteous simply loves its neighbor.
You see, that’s what God does, man, He goes into you and He transforms you. He makes you a new creature in Christ. He creates within you a new Spirit, and Spirit thinks with the mindset of God’s Kingdom. The Kingdom of God is grace and mercy. So that’s what we reflect.
Is there a vengeful God? I believe so. You’ll see that at the end of time. I do believe that. God’s wrath will come. But that is not who God is for us right now. I think that right now, to reflect God is to serve. The Kingdom mentality is a servant mentality, so we reflect God by serving. We love our neighbors as ourselves.
That’s how I understand my identity in Christ. This is who I am. I don’t perform acts of service in order to receive acceptance from God. Performance is trying to get acceptance, but God has already accepted me. I serve because I’m a member of His family!
Performance kills families. It eats away at marriages. You expect a certain image of perfection from your husband or your wife and you judge them when they fall short. And they say, “Wait a minute. If you trust me and you love me, I shouldn’t have to perform for you in order to be accepted by you. I should already be accepted. I should be able to mess up, and trust you to love and help me.” The same thing applies to parents and children. Your children should hear you say, “I accept you and I love you. You don’t have to perform to be my child.”
There’s no performance in God’s family. God trusts you and accepts you even when you mess up. When you mess up, God says, “Let’s talk about this. What can I do to help you? Not fix you, help you.” That’s what a trusting relationship looks like, and we can reflect this in our own families. Our families can reflect God’s family.
See you Monday.