Find your life
“For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.”
Matthew 16:25 (NIV)
Who doesn’t want to save their life? We cling to life with the most incredible tenacity. Amazing stories are told of the struggle for survival. Yet here we are told that if we want to save our life we will lose it!
The answer to this paradox lies in the meaning of ‘the life’ that is being spoken of. There is the physical life (‘the life flesh’ referred to by Paul in Galatians 5) that leads ultimately to disappointment and death, that we appear to cling to against all odds – and there is the life of the Spirit (John 6:63) with its assurance of eternal peace, happiness, joy, accomplishment and fulfilment for all who believe and follow Jesus.
When we concentrate all our efforts on this temporary physical life and shut out any higher thoughts, we fail to participate in the life of Christ through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. But when we turn this life around and ‘lose it’ to Jesus, we can say, like Paul, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ…lives in me…” (Galatians 2:20).
Jesus came to give us not just existence, but abundant life. Jesus says, “…I came that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). When we allow our focus to be on the new life of the Spirit we will ‘not gratify the desires of the flesh’ (Galatians 5:16). Our personal relationships improve; our priorities are directed to what is really important; we gain strength to endure through trials and we have bright hope for the future even when the present seems in darkness.
When we lose our life for Jesus’ sake, he comes and lives in us and transforms us from the inside out (Colossians 3:9-10). We can find this new life now and see beyond the troubles of today to the marvelous hope for the future.
Father in heaven, thank you that you have sent your Son to give us life. Thank you for your love that wants us to be blessed by all that’s good. Help us to give up the selfish life that always seeks to get, and to turn instead to the life of your Son who always wants to give. Grant us the courage to put our trust in you. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, Amen
Study by Jim Robertson
About the writer:
Jim Robertson is an Elder in the Shetland Island congregation of Grace Communion International.
Grace Communion International Shetland Islands
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