No.259. Thanksgiving that I am a New Creation.

Colours of the Rainbow > Thanksgiving > No.259. Thanksgiving that I am a New Creation.

Yesterday we were looking at the power that is ours when we ‘reckon ourselves dead to sit but alive to God in Christ Jesus.’  Romans 6:11. It’s the power to live life from the Christ life within, and to ‘walk as He walked’ 1 John 1:6. So here, at the heart of our new life in Christ, is the enormous mystery that, ‘If anyone is in Christ he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.’ 2 Corinthians 5:17.

We said yesterday that becoming a Christian is not a patch up job on the ‘old me’, but a whole new way of living powered by the Holy Spirit. Grasping this mind blowing mystery is a challenge to us all, but if we can, it is a key to entering that ‘rest of faith’ about which the writer to the Hebrews talks. ‘For there remains a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from His’. Hebrews 4:9,10.

If we have been crucified with Christ, then ‘being redeemed’ means that Jesus took my old man to the cross and gave me His life in exchange, when I was born again. His life in me carries His spiritual DNA, and I now all I have the do is choose to let his life flow out in my thoughts, words and deeds. I say all, but as we know, our old ways of being and doing linger on, and this is why I need to have my mind renewed because my mind can still think as the ‘old’ me. And so the whole process of sanctification – becoming like Jesus – is about learning to live from the new man within.

Paul conveys in several of his letters that there is always a choice involved in this process. He writes ‘put on (or clothe yourself with) the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature’. Romans 13:14. ‘All you who were baptised into Christ have clothed yourself with Christ’. Galatians 3:27, ‘and do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator’. Colossians 3:9,10. And to the Ephesians he writes,’ you were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.’ Ephesians  4:22 – 24.

It seems to me that putting off the old and living from the new has a lot to do with how we are thinking and therefore the choices that we are making. This then is, once again, where the powerful weapon of thanksgiving comes to our aid.

I believe that the more that I can thank the Lord that ‘I am a new creation’, that ‘the old has gone and the new has come’, the more my faith will grow in who I now am ‘in Christ’. I will be more alert and in tune to how my new nature, guided and empowered by the Holy Spirit, would like to behave. Thanksgiving that I have a new nature and a new life in Christ deep within will enable me, in any situation, to recognise when the old me is trying to get resurrected. Putting off the old becomes a choice because I am not going to battle the old, I am just going to remember it has been replaced with the new.

How does this work? Well let’s take a simple example.

I find myself getting exasperated by a situation. I am getting fretful and agitated, so I begin to say, “Thank you Jesus, that I am a new creation, that I have your life within. I thank you for the Holy Spirit who is producing in me the beautiful fruit of patience through this situation. I turn away from agitation, and choose again to let your life flow in and through me. I thank you that from Your life within can come the wisdom to know what to do here, and in fact You and I together can walk through this time in peace, and even with some joy and laughter.”

Have a go!! Thanksgiving can truly begin to make being sanctified fun.


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