By the time everyone reads this I will be at Bowling Green State University with our some of our high schoolers for a weeklong convention called CIY Move. The theme for this year’s convention is Nevertheless. This is taken from Galatians 2:20 (KJV). In this verse, Paul declares that he has crucified himself with Christ and the new life he lives is not his own, but Christ’s.
Too often times, people treat Church like a drive through or supermarket. We roll up in our car or shopping cart and we fill it with what we want. We take the stuff that makes us happy or makes us feel good about ourselves. We customize Church (and often times the Bible), fitting it around our thoughts, opinions, and worldview.
The problem with doing this is we can create a “Christianity” that quite honestly isn’t Christian. What Paul is saying in this verse is a lot like what Jesus said in the gospels. Jesus said, “if anyone would come after me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.” When we say yes to Jesus, we say no to ourselves; in other words, we die. We are given a new life. Jesus nor Paul leaves any room for us to shop around our Christianity. We can’t take the truth of God’s Word and align it to the way of life we want. We must align our thoughts, attitudes, and lifestyles around the truth of God’s Word.
Our youth will be challenged this week to give up their old way of life for a new, better one. A life that Jesus calls us to live. It was the life we were meant to live before sin came into the world. Let us all try to align ourselves daily to God’s will, as well as challenge others to do the same. May we all be able to say, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”