How much has Christ risen in you?
Christ is Risen! The response during Eastertide is “He is Risen indeed!” Often the thought of the presence of the Risen Christ bothers me. Where is the Risen Christ now? This seems to be a silly question – of course, Christ has been ascended and is seated at the right hand of God the Father, as described in Rom 8:34. What I really am interested is ‘Does the Risen Christ have a place in our lives?’
Some of the shocking news in recent headlines is the financial scandals and immorality with church leaders and in churches. Unfortunately, such scandals also exist everywhere both in our own churches as well as in other places. God is very sad and probably regrets in making us. On another note, we are frequently reminded that we are a fallen race and we really and desperately need Christ to save us from the fire and damnation. So then how much are we saved – quarter, half or fully saved. In other words, one can refer this as ‘How much has Christ risen in each of us?’
The Scripture calls this Sanctification. ‘We were saved, we are being saved, and we will be saved’ – a famous quote used by many great leaders. Sanctification is a journey or a process; and it starts at the point of salvation (for many do not exactly know where the starting point is) and ends at the time when we meet with Christ face to face. In the process of sanctification, each one of us will still have much vulnerability and can also succumb to temptations (the reason for asking to be led away from temptations in the Lord’s Prayer). All leaders are usually subjected to greater temptations and are main targets of the evil one. Much prayer is needed for them. They are usually in the front-line and are facing the fiery darts directly. Leaders are also frequently subjected to greater and stricter judgment. (James 3:1)
However, Easter should always remind us that we need the Risen Christ to rise from within our lives. He should rise from our inner most thoughts, world view, behavior, habits, manners, secrets, social life, spiritual life, relational life, prayer life, recreational life, time management, mind management, leisure management, health management, etc. From what we can observed, it is not sufficient to score an ‘A’ in our preaching or time management or pastoral skill or theological knowledge and fail in our money management or health management or leisure management or moral management.
Our life is liken to a wooden barrel which made up of many staves. It is not good to be a water holding barrel if one stave is very short while the rest are in full length. It seems rather better to have all the staves at half length equally – in this manner, the barrel can at least hold half barrel full of water. Our aim is to lengthen and strengthen the staves until they reach their maximum length i.e. to have Christ risen in our whole lives.
May this Easter be a reminder for us to strive towards the raising the shorter staves of our lives!