Good morning to all of you! I hope that you all had a wonderful Easter, resurrection day. HE HAS RISEN, AMEN!! Last night as I was pondering on the true meaning of Easter I was overwhelmed with gratitude. I was reading in the book of John about the resurrection of Jesus and what it meant last night and woke up with it on my mind this morning. As I was asking the Holy Spirit what I should write about today I had the thought, “He laid down His life so that He could take it up again” come to me. What a perfect topic to talk about the day after Easter right. Jesus laid down His life to defeat death once and for all, to offer eternal life, to save us, to create a new covenant and relationship between us and God, and so that He could send His Holy Spirit to live in us. He willingly died so that we could live and have the opportunity to live a new life. And that is what comes to me as I think of the words, “He laid down His life so that He could take it back.” Because of Jesus we have the opportunity to lay down our old life and take up a new life.
It says in the bible that when we are baptized it is a symbol of the death of our old self and the resurrection of our new self. When we are placed under the water we are putting to death our natural way of living. And when we come up out of the water we are cleansed of our old self and the new person is now alive within us. But that has me wondering how many Christians really believe that to the point that they live it. Our resurrection from the water is like the resurrection of Jesus. His Spirit was freed when He was resurrected so that it could take it’s place within our Spirit so that we could live the life that He died for us to have. And sadly I think that many of us are failing to live that life for a couple of reasons.
For some of us we have a problem with laying down our life to take up His. We don’t want to let go our known way of doing things. We don’t want to give up control. We don’t have trust in the unknown so we feel it is safer for us to keep hold of at least some control of our lives. We don’t want to give up something that we have been doing for years so we try to compromise with God. We are consumed by our own desires and giving into them like we have been doing for so many years.
Some of us have a hard time truly believing that we are a new creature, a new person all together, so we have a hard time giving up our life for our new life. We can’t seem to grasp the fact of all that Jesus did do for us on the cross and that we are a new person when we believe in Jesus and accept Him into our hearts. We can’t understand how everything that we have done could just be wiped away as if it never existed and new person, a new start at life, be birthed within us .
Some of us are just plain hard headed and stubborn. Our sinful nature keeps screaming at us that it wants what it wants and it wants it now so we continue to give into it. Our desires and ways of life are so rooted in us that it doesn’t seem fair or right that we do life different. We feel as if we are having teeth pulled when it comes to changing our ways because we are so resistant to it.
No matter the reason as to why we haven’t laid our life down so that we can take up our new life, we are keeping ourselves from having a much better life than the one that we have now. We are keeping ourselves stuck in places that we want victory in. We are held down by strongholds. We are causing our own lack of peace, joy, contentment, and love. If Jesus is telling us to lay something down it is because He knows of something better for us. No matter how good we already think something is, if He says to lay it down then there is something even better. I see it as when we lay our life down and take it back we are taking it back from the enemy and all the negative effects that he has had on it. And we can never go wrong in doing that.
If we want the abundant life that Jesus gave His life for us to have we are going to have to choose to lay down our life in whatever way He is prompting us to. If He is telling us to stop something then we are going to have to stop it so that He can start a new thing in us. He will never tell us to give up something without replacing it with something even better. We have to make the choice to lay down our way of life and to rise up in His way of life so that we can have the peace, joy, and satisfaction of life that we want and deserve. And remember that Jesus suffered for us just as we will have to suffer at times to gain victory in life. So what has God been asking you to lay down that you are still holding onto today? Choose to lay it down so that you can take up a life that is much better.