What you see is not me. (Or, at least should not be me).
Our lives are hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). We have died with Christ and been raised with him (Rom. 6:4). Our lives have been crucified with Christ (Gal. 2:2). We have lost our lives for Jesus’ sake (Luke 9:24). However, our temptation to self-preserve, to protect, and to insulate ourselves from pain, from risk, and from others demonstrates the exact opposite of faith in Jesus. It immobilizes us from faithful living.
After the service one of our elders (and former Vietnam helicopter pilot) came up to me and shared his perspective. . .
He saw people dying their first month in combat because they had no idea what they were doing. Then he saw people die in their last month because they got careful. They began to make decisions that were safe, knowing they had only a few days left. The only way to get through it was to do the job that was before you as hard and as well as you could–even as you heard the bullets fly by your head.
In the realm of faith, if we live our lives trying to preserve the life we’ve already died to then we’re already losing. Jesus died for more than that. But if we remember that we have died and that Christ lives through us then we can truly live. We simply go out and live our lives for him.
Risk is the new normal. Radical living isn’t radical. We encourage it. We expect it. We pray for it. And we hope that it only grows in our midst because Jesus gave up everything so we could have true life.
What you see is not me.