After yesterday’s post, I’m Dying, I’d be remiss to not mention their is life after death.
I’m not talking about eternal life, although I do happen to believe heaven awaits those of us who have bowed our knees to Jesus Christ.
Today I am referring to the idea that dying to ourselves, no matter how painful it is or how many times we have to do it, always results in a richer, better life this side of heaven.
That’s a bold statement I don’t often believe, especially in the midst of the dying. But I think it’s true.
Paul tells the Church, “We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body,” (2 Corinthians 4:11-12).
It is so true that death hurts. Learning to die to ourselves can be unbelievably painful. And, in one area or another, it seems the scripture is true when it says we are always being given over to death.
But there is life after death!
More specifically, Jesus’ life. If we can trust Paul, and I think we can, our dying daily = Jesus’ life revealed in us. If I can keep this truth in front of me while my soul writhes in pain, I can persevere. Jesus just might be the only incentive grand enough to get me to agree to do life His way.
When Jesus is revealed in my mortal body, two benefits occur.
- I bask in the presence of Christ! In order for Him to be revealed in me, He has to be near, which means I get the pleasure and delight of intimacy with Him. Scripture is clear that our souls long for Jesus. And every time we die to ourselves, we get more of Him! His nearness is worth the temporary pain.
- Others get to see Jesus in me. I become a living vessel through which Jesus displays His grandeur to others. He reveals Himself in our bodies to become visible and tangible to the world around us. Believers, who understand it is Him at work in us, rejoice and draw nearer to Him themselves. Unbelievers, who don’t understand what’s happening in us, see there is something occurring. And with the nudge of the Holy Spirit, their hearts become curious, taking another step down the road that leads to Truth.
If you aren’t having to die to yourself in some way right now, you will soon. The rest of us who are experiencing spiritual death, lets fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, as He seeks to reveal Himself in us for our delight and for His glory!
Thank you for reminding us that death and resurrection is the motif played out in the Christian life over and over as we feed on the death and resurrection of Jesus.