The Scriptures clearly teach that Christ’s death on my behalf and his presence within my life has fundamentally changed who I am. I am a new creature with a new identity and a new bent towards the things of God. However, too often I find myself forgetting the benefits and promises that have been afforded to me on Christ’s behalf. It is easy to give way to thoughts, emotions, and desires that should not rein supreme in my life, yet periodically I find myself defining who I am based on issues and struggles in the ministry rather than my identity in Christ and anger and bitterness can take root.
As my flesh battles on against the Spirit, I have every capability to respond in sin to circumstances that come my way. I’m capable of bending the truth, or twisting it in such a way that it resembles nothing like it did before. I’m even more prone to beating people over the head with the truth in an angry or belittling way, when I’m called to be gracious and kind with every word and deed. It struck me last week, while at a conference that I can be right, but in the wrong way. Truth has a funny ability of cutting both ways. Just because I am right, doesn’t justify a behavior that treats Christ’s sacrifice as meaningless and void of power in how others are treated. He came not only to redeem me from my most obvious sins, but also to speak gentle words of peace and restoration in my discreet internal reactions or in my lack of outward grace.
Today, I am truly grateful that God has called me to be dissatisfied and discontent with where I am. I feel a restlessness and hunger for something more and that holy discontent can only be satisfied through being grateful for the grace that has changed my life and all that has been promised to me in Christ. I am convinced that God does not want me to enjoy only a partial fulfillment of his riches, but to continue in my process of radical transformation that is the already, but not yet. The beautiful thing about this culmination is that it will result in Christ being my great reward. Nothing is grander and nothing is greater than this truth and the irony is you can never be right about that in a wrong way.