Do you know those songs you sing in church about Jesus being the centre of your life/it all/be the centre/all that other stuff about having everything in your life revolve around him? They usually have a some really pretty melody that you feel like you butcher when you try and sing it because you aren’t anything like Darlene Zschech (or maybe that’s just every song…). And they also usually are accompanied by words like “surrender” and “all of me” and other big abstract concepts like that.
What I’ve been considering lately, especially as I go into this last year of school (the number of times I’ve said “7 months” in the last week is beyond ridiculous), is what it really actually LOOKS like to do that. Especially at a time where I have a last-chance to develop habits and routines that will (hopefully) follow me into that scary world of being a “real adult”. What does it mean if I choose to live out Jesus being the centre of everything – the centre of my life. Surrendering everything I have to him, and trusting that He’s got it all planned out and he’ll never leave my side? What does that really truly look like?
I don’t know
Yep. I don’t. I’m still learning – so far from perfect (SO FAR). But I have learned a few things…and one of the mind-blowingly simple things I’ve been reminded of is that to have your life revolving around Christ at the centre, you need to have him in the centre, and the only way to do THAT is to choose to focus on him and let him fill you (you know – that other cliche saying we have about filling up on Christ so you can pour out to others!). The first step to having Jesus be the centre of my life, is by allowing him to be the centre of my 8:00-8:30 morning break time. It isn’t my life, but starting to cut out time allows him to fill up a little part of me. And the more that I allow myself to fill up on Christ, the more the little bits start to overflow into the rest of my life. It’s choosing him over whatever I’m doing – throwing my phone across the room when doing devos so there are no distractions, stopping mid-thought process and turning back to praise.
BRINGING IT FULL CIRCLE…that hypothetical chair we’ve got at the centre of our lives – do we let Jesus fill it? Actually let him sit on the chair without trying to push hi off or sit on the corner. And then do we let him being there permeate the rest of our life or put up some walls around the chair to protect other parts?
So…I think that living a “Jesus-centred life” and being “filled with Jesus” go hand in hand. And when we let him fill the centre spot we have in our life, and start trying to align each individual decision, each thought every day, towards what he wants. Asking for a renewed heart daily (I know for one, my heart needs renewing multiple times a day). It is then that Jesus fills the centre of our life, and we have a centre-filled life.
By all means, I am NOT perfect. I still like to centre my life around myself or section off parts of my life that I don’t want God to touch. But I’m learning. Learning to let go. Learning to be filled. Learning to let him be the centre. Learning to be centre-filled and not centre-empty.
So many illustrations overlapping – hope that all made sense. Thank you for reading my thoughts~
“The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless.” – Titus 3:8-9
Point being, focus on the things that matter, not the ones that don’t. This isn’t to say that we can’t learn about things that we disagree on and continue to learn more, but it isn’t the focus. The focus always has and always will be on the saving power and mercy of Christ. When we take this focus away, all things are in vain. We don’t have time to waste foolishly fighting over little things when eternity is at stake.
Have you ever seen one of those cartoon depictions of perfume where it just hovers in the air like a pink cloud? That’s what I think of when I read about us being the aroma and fragrance of Christ. The sweet smell that hangs in the air, slowly permeating the rest of the room. I’m pretty sure it isn’t referring to walking by the boy’s locker room in high school where it was debatable if sweat or axe was a more preferred smell, but more to a soft, soothing smell that draws you closer to someone. I think this is how Christ should be evident in our lives – 100% there, you can’t deny that something is there that is a little different from normal air, and it slowly interests others, allowing them to see Christ working in us. But not so that we are shoving the gospel down people’s throats.
“But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.” – 2 Corinthians 2:14-15
Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.
– Ephesians 4:15-16
I had to read this about 10 times to get what it was saying. Apparently complex sentence structure was a thing with Paul. A few truths I gathered from this sentence:
1. the body is held together by every joint with which it is equipped. All who are a part of the body are therefore important. I am important, you are important, we are all different.
2. This only works when the parts are working properly, which brings the question “Are you working properly?” and also “what does it mean to work properly?” to which … I’m not sure I have an answer.
3. Christ is the head.
4. We should speak in love
5. We are growing in Christ, building each other up in love.
So while I was reading today, the “Father Abraham” song was playing on repeat in my head…which was kind of distracting.
This passage speaks a lot about how we are A. heirs in Christ, and that this is B. through faith, not the law. It is fitting to be reading this after finishing Matthew, as now we begin to learn about the results of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection. As a result of this and of the Spirit, we all become heirs, or rather, we all become united. It has nothing to do with how well we followed the law. It is comforting to read and understand that it is by nothing that we do that we become sons and heirs, and instead through faith. I especially found the parallel to Abraham, Sarah, and Hagar interesting (clearly I missed that last time around), having never fully considered the implications of being saved through faith counting us as sons of Abraham through Sarah. I guess part of me feels bad for Hagar? Either way, praise God that we have been saved from slavery and have entered into freedom in Christ Jesus!
This passage left me with quite a bit to digest, and I don’t really want to share incorrect truths, so for that reason, this is where I leave you :]