Putting Jesus Back

Monday after Easter, and the Easter dress is on the floor in the laundry room, as are the Easter suits and carelessly tossed ties and shoes.  Easter is over.  The Celebration party had its curtain call.  Everyone went home.  So…what now?

What impact does the Resurrection have on us the day after?  The week after?  The month after?   Understandably we can say “Well there’s always next year…”  or “I go to church every Sunday anyway.”  These are all valid points, but what kind of impact does Christ’s resurrection have on you and me in our daily lives?

All too often we want to put Jesus back.
We put Him back into those boxes for next year.
We put Him back on the hanger as we hang up that Easter dress or suit.  dress
We close our Bibles to that story until next year rolls back around.
We put Jesus back into our preconceived, compartmentalized places.

But should we put it all back like that?
Is there a trace of Him in our work places, social events, friendships, relationships, families?  Or does He get put away just like the seasonal stuff in our closets?
I have to wonder what the answer is even for me sometimes.
I can accept a risen Savior, but what does it mean in my habits, and in my faith walk and my desire to become more and more like Him?  How does this Resurrected Christ fit into my overly complicated life?  Am I secretly compartmentalizing Jesus?  Am I packing Him away for another year?  Am I checking that season off on my calendar  and moving on without Him there?

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What a tragedy it would be for any of us to progress past the cross and the empty tomb without it affecting the entirety of who we are as His creation!  Essentially when we put Him back on the shelf, in the box, on a hanger – we are selectively accepting who He is and who He can be in our lives.   We are, subconsciously putting limits on the Almighty…we are also putting limits on our own spiritual growth.

 

A New Creation: 
A friend of mine on Facebook posted this comment that sparked my heart and ignited some intrinsic truth deep within me.  Have you ever had one of those “A-ha” moments?  Where the light bulb flickers on, and it’s bright and it shines on truth.  Perhaps this will spark something within you too in terms of re-framing  who Jesus is, which will undoubtedly make us second guess putting Jesus back…here it is:

One could suggest that the ‘tetelestai’ (it is finished) saying refers not to atonement but to creation; it is the creation that is completed on the cross. On the cross, the true human is created, creation is now complete.” (Cameron Horsburgh/Michael Hardin)

                                                      -Mind. Blown. –

How can you ever go back to putting Jesus on the shelf?
How can you not have a life changing event take place in your heart when you consider ALL of creation is now complete in this Messiah atonement?  That we can’t put God in a box and only bring Him out once a year in light of creation becoming complete in Him.  There’s nowhere else to move besides forward in our relationship to the One who has made EVERYTHING complete!

It’s like buying a new suit, wearing it only one time just to put it on a hanger and stare at it while wearing the same old dingy ripped up, dirty outfit you’ve always worn.  It just doesn’t make any sense.  So…why do we do this sometimes with Jesus?

Unwrapping It.
Take Jesus off the shelf.   box3
Throw the old outfit away – you have a new suit to wear!
Throw away the old title for yourself – “Sinner”
Because you’ve been saved by this amazing grace found only in Jesus, and you’ve been given a new title – “Child of God.”
You can’t compartmentalize Jesus.
You can’t “seasonalize” Him either.
He can’t be contained.
He wants to transform you!
He has already completed creation – which can include YOU!

Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” Revelation 3:20

May you find an ever present Christ with you today!
May our hearts be compelled to live for Him and reside with Him every moment of every day!  May we experience this new creation every time we utter His name on our breath.
May this transformation of the new, complete creation be in us EVERY day.

Something more to Ponder today.
To God be the glory!

(Another fitting article for today from Steve Simms entitled: “Why Put Jesus In A Box?” check it out too!)

Treasure: Curses or Blessings?

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“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:19-21)

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I can’t help but think of the original movie “Pirates of the Caribbean – The Curse of the Blackpearl”  in which Johnny Depp plays Captain Jack Sparrow.  His treasure is the Black Pearl and taking his rightful place as its Captain again…His antagonist is Captain Barbossa  and the crew have been cursed by a pirate’s treasure so that they can never die but they cannot enjoy the pleasures of life anymore either.  Their treasure in life has become their undoing and they are now cursed because of it.

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Is it so far fetched to think that earthly treasure can be like this with us as well?  No we may not appear as ghosts in the moonlight, but we may be ruled by our treasures.  Just flip on the television and consider the numerous commercials that tell us we haven’t truly lived until we have the newest and best telephone, electronic device, car or job.  Earthly treasure certainly has its trappings, its lures and its appeal doesn’t it?

Have you heard it said, ‘whatever consumes most of your time will consume you?’   Another word for our treasures could be the word ‘Idol’.  If we become consumed with an idol in our lives, it dominates our time, and our attention then does it not take away from the time we should be spending with God?  Don’t we see throughout the Old Testament that God is a jealous God who wants us to be completely sold out to Him alone?  It literally breaks His heart when his people sell His love for cheap idols of this world that are temporal and will fade away.  It’s like having the Hope Diamond yet trading it in for a cubic zirconia ring that was seen the on Home shopping network…it just doesn’t make sense!

Where is your treasure today?  Are you investing your time and your passions on the Eternal or the temporal and Earthly?  Have you been cursed by your possessions?  Consumed by them?  Don’t allow earthly treasures that are cheap and temporary to replace the love of God which is perfect, lovely and will last forever!

Truth be told, I have made this mistake countless times, it never pays off.  Sure for a time we’re happy with our treasure, but over time it loses its shine and what we thought would bring us happiness leaves us with a vacuum in our hearts…and we’re empty.  Eternal treasure will never leave us feeling this way!  God will never leave us or forsake us, and His promises are always true, noble and priceless in value!

So what’ll it be?  Your shiny new toy that will one day fail you, or God’s Eternal light which shines forever?

Where your treasure is…there your heart is also.  Think on these things, and with the words of Jesus, “He who has ears to hear, let Him hear!”

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