“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20

I celebrate the fact that I have been crucified with Christ, and that now I live with the daily encouragement of His spirit and power.  Through my new birth when I was thirteen years old I gave my life to Jesus and daily I endeavor to die to self and that old nature.  At a crossroads in my early years, Jesus resurrected me so I could have a living relationship with the eternal God.

Many of us want to identify with Christ during the joys and victories we experience, but have difficulty being crucified with Christ in the struggles life brings.  I sometimes hear people speak glowingly how God blessed them with finances, problem solving, or victory in a legal situation.  God’s word tells us that we need to offer Him praises not only during our victories but also for standing with us during the those trying times.

The same God that gave the Israelites victory over many enemies and kings is the One who stood with His people during 40-years of trials and tribulations.   Because of the resurrected Christ and presence of the Holy Spirit we too can stand tall during challenging times.

Remember dear ones, the Holy Spirit is within us, to strengthen us with power in our inner person – to make Christ real within us and flood our hearts with His limitless love – to fill us with His fullness – to enable us to know in personal experience the things He has so freely bestowed on us in Christ.

Because we desire to live for Christ some of us live with the pain of rejection by unbelieving friends, associates, or relatives.  Others must live with the consequences of “doing the right thing at work” even when it means you don’t get the promotion you deserve or the recognition associated with your hard work.  And some believers struggle with depression and anxiety because of the brokenness in this sin-filled world.  But all of us can go through our tribulations knowing that God is with us and that our lives are being refined and perfected for the glory of Christ.

Christ is with us even when we can’t sense His presence.  I give praise that Christ is not a weak person outside me, but a tremendous power inside me – that through Him I am competent to cope with what life brings, to do His will, to love with His heart, and to be more than a conqueror.  The apostle John reminds us, “In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

The Apostle Paul tells us, “But may it never be that I should boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Gal. 6:14   Praise God for His love, mercy, strength, victory, and grace.

Personal Application:

What are the trials you are going through?  Remember the comfort we get from His word: Matt. 11:28, John 14:27, Rom. 8:28.

God loves you and so do we!

Jim Grassi, D. Min.