We Already Have it All

Lamentations

“I can’t Mom. I just can’t calm down. I tried, but I can’t.” sobbed my youngest son.

I know just what he means. Many days, I try as hard as I can to get everything right and I fail. No matter how organized I am, how well I follow the “10 steps to a better ___”, and no matter how good my intentions, my life often doesn’t go as planned.

I look at friends who seem to have it all together. They get up early and read their Bibles. Their prayer life sounds alive and vibrant. When I visit their home, everything seems organized and clean. And their kids, they do what they are told the first time.

And I wonder, what am I doing wrong? What’s missing? Deep inside, my heart sobs just like my son’s. “I can’t do it. I tried, but I can’t.”

“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.” 2 Peter 2:3-4

I love the apostle Peter because he didn’t get everything right either. He spent three years with Jesus, even saw Him in all His radiant glory, and still denied knowing Him. It is these words from 2 Peter that give me great hope. Peter tells me here that I won’t find what I’m looking for in all the blogs I read, tweets I follow, or boards I pin to. In fact, I don’t have to figure things out, try harder, or read another 10 step book– because I already have everything I need.

Everything.

That’s the crux of this passage. Because of the saving gospel of Jesus and the hope He secured for us at the cross, through faith in Christ, we have everything we need to grow in holiness. Yes, that’s right–we have everything we need!

Isn’t that amazing! Our growth in holiness is guaranteed, not by all the good things we do, but by the power of Christ at work in us. By His death, He purchased our freedom from sin, making us free to live for Him. He has given us His Spirit, the very same Spirit who raised Him from the dead, to transform us from the inside out. We are not on our own. The Spirit leads, guides, strengthens, convicts, prods, prompts, and empowers us to walk in holiness.

On those days when everything seems to go wrong, it is because I have forgotten this truth. I have tried to do life on my own. I’ve failed to remember that the gospel didn’t just save me once and then left me to my own devices. Rather, I need the gospel everyday.

Each time we fail and fall into sin, we are reminded of how much we need a Savior. When we turn our eyes to Christ, we remember all He did to rescue us from slavery to sin. Appropriating the truths of the gospel turns us away from relying on ourselves and instead on the grace of Christ. Because the gospel reminds us that we are more sinful than we realized but also loved more than we could ever imagine.

The gospel reminds us that we have everything we need for growth in holiness because of what Christ has already done for us:

*We are children of the King and heirs of the Kingdom. (Galatians 3:26-29, 1 Peter 1:4, Galatians 4:7)

*We have direct and full access to the Father. (Romans 4:7-8, 5:6-10, 8:1, Ephesians 1:7-8, Hebrews 4:16)

*We are loved by the Father as much as He loves the Son. (John 17:23)

*The same grace that saved us for eternity is the same grace that picks us back up every time we fall. (Ephesians 1:7, Romans 7:15-25, Ephesians 3:12)

*When God looks at us, He sees the righteousness of Christ. Our past, present, and future sins have all been paid for. Our punishment has been taken, once and for all. (Romans 5:19, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Philippians 3:9, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Galatians 2:20)

*The Spirit is always actively at work in us, even if it doesn’t seem like it. (2 Corinthians 3:18, Romans 8, Philippians 1:6)

When life overwhelms us and we feel weak and helpless, we must remember where our strength lies–not in ourselves but in Christ. We have to remember the gospel of grace each day, resting not in our works, but in the finished work of Christ. And we must tell ourselves what I’ve told my son when he despairs over his behavior, “You’re right. You can’t do it. But God can, He did, and He will.”

 

christina foxMore About Christina

Christina Fox is a homeschooling mom, licensed mental health counselor, writer, and coffee drinker, not necessarily in that order. She lives in sunny S. Florida with her husband of sixteen years and their two boys. You can find her sharing her faith journey at www.toshowthemjesus.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ToShowThemJesus.

 

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