by Damon Walby
He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.” John 3:30
The first thing that comes to my mind is: “I cannot make that happen.” Oh, but most of the time I think I can or that I am a fairly decent person compared to others. Why do I need to decrease? Come on, I’ve never committed adultery or murdered someone! Or have I? The God of the universe uses a different standard than we do. His is His own Son. Or worse, I don’t even give these words a second thought. I am too busy or too tired. I constantly look at myself. I self-evaluate, self-pity, self-praise, self-prosper…I am obsessed with myself. There is little wonder that I suffocate the very life of the risen Lord Jesus.
Most of the time my thoughts and actions support a different story. That is, Jesus Christ came to this earth, told a few good stories and even performed miracles, was betrayed by every single man, even those claiming to be His disciples, and finally affixed to a piece of wood, after first being beaten beyond any human recognition. He was just another criminal judged by the Roman empire. He was just another martyr. He is not alive. This is the story I am a witness to most of the time.
Yet, there is a part of me, however small, that knows the Truth. Even this Knowledge is not of me. How could it be? It is solely because their is a Love beyond our comprehension that seeks after you and I. That seeks to save the sick and lost. Not only to save from the Hellfire, which is glorious in itself, but to save from self. Yes, to save from what I am by nature. As C.S. Lewis wrote, “There are no half-measures…He wants the whole tree down.” You see, once the Lord grabs hold of you and I, the goal is Perfection. And this is not because He is a puppet master trying to force an agenda, but to freely give you His very Life…to give you that which is truly Love, Joy, Peace, Goodness…and there is no gray. There is only black and white. Darkness and Light. Death and Life. Did you know that? And Jesus Christ is the only “Way, Truth, and Life”. He who has the Son has Life, he who does not have the Son does not have Life. It is that simple. What is life then? Is it a period of about 80 years whereby I walk the earth and then some day disappear? No, Life is only ever the Life of the Son of God, who desires to manifest Himself through you and I, who are jars of clay if we are willing. Vessels of the very Life of God. “Damon, you are just being super-spiritual”, some may think to themselves. No, this can be a Reality in your life. In fact, would you accept that to express the reality of the Risen Lord Jesus is the very will of the Creator of the universe? The sole purpose for your existence?
Have no illusions; this cannot occur by our own efforts to be “spiritual”, by being good in the world’s eye, going to church 7 days a week, or by even having sound doctrine and theology. Now, I am not against going to church or knowing what you believe, but neither alone will ever truly change you into the likeness of the Lord Jesus Christ, the only Man who ever truly lived the Christian life. Only by the grace of the Father, the finished work of the Son, and the revelation of the Spirit within will you and I come to know and bear witness to the Truth. Ask Him to do so every moment of your life and trust that He will finish His work in you, even if you don’t “feel” the Change. You may never know, in this lifetime, those that have seen His glorious Life portrayed through you. Yet, Heaven knows.
Like the baptist, my we have a heart that desires His increase, and His alone.