Sunday, October 31, 2010

BLOG # 85 Five Words - Our Life

Blog #85 Five Words - Our Life Several years ago it occurred to me that we could sum up our Christian experience in just five significant words. They are: 1. FORMED. 2 INFORMED. 3. DEFORMED, 4. REFORMED, and 5.TRANSFORMED. I don't know who the oldest person on earth is right now, but we can be sure there was a time in the really not too distant past when none of us existed. We came to be. By God's desire and design we were formed. At the time of our birth we knew very little. As the years went on we grew in knowledge. We had to learn many things we now know very well and take for granted, how to walk, talk, run. play, and work. Some people received the gift of faith, which is a special kind of knowledge. We who believe in Jesus received a special kind of faith which tells us many things about the world ourselves and God. We are informed by our faith in Jesus. He is our teacher, teaching us about important questions like where the world came from, the meaning and goal of our lives, and how we are to live in order to please God, be a blessing to those around us, and be happy. Sometimes we live out our faith and do and say what we know is right. Sometimes we don't. That is when the design and plan and love God desires to have for us is sort of bruised or broken. The beautiful person God wants us to be in deformed. But God is so much in love with us that his love does not stop there. God never goes looking for someone else in place of us. When we realize this we come back to Him. God forgives, We are reformed. But even that is not the end of it. Jesus brought a gift from Heaven that no one else before Him ever even dreamed of. It is the gift of God's own life, shared with us in our own unique human way, through (Jn 14:6; 1 Tim 2: 5), with (Mt 28:20), and in ( Jn 15: 4 - 7) Jesus. Talking to Nicodemus Jesus identified this gift in terms of being "born from above", or "again" as some versions of the text have it. (Jn 3: 11). Other texts throw light on this one: 1 Jn 3: 1 "See what love the Father has bestowed on us in letting us be called children of God! Yet that is what we are". And 2 Cor 5: 17: "If anyone is in Christ he is a new creation!" In Christ, through faith and Baptism we are transformed. These thoughts and texts deserve more space and time than we are giving them here, but I thought it would be good to focus them with you and hope that will incline you to discover more of their richness power and possible impact on your life. Images come to mind for the key words. ALL of creation is FORMED by God. The image of God as the DESIGNER and OWNER OF ALL comes to mind. Following a process through which we pass from being informed by faith, deformed by sin, and reformed through forgiveness, we Christians are transformed. We are not merely made into better men and women. Rather, we are "born from above" as children of God in a definite and real way though, with, and in Jesus. Through Jesus our BRIDGE, with Jesus our FRIEND, COMPANION AND HELPER. and in Jesus our LIFE. Wow! What a story that is. And it is offered free to all who believe.

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