For most of my 35 years of living I had been told that I can do all things through Christ who strengthened me and I believed this with all of my heart. I believed it so much that it actually depressed me because I had no idea how “I” could do it. I read this as Christ would give me the strength and then it was all up to me to make it happen. I walked around so confused and frustrated. My time in the word left me more depressed than filled and I didn’t understand why. How could something that is suppose to fill me leave me feeling like this, I was desperate to figure it out, and I am so very thankful that God brought me the answer I was looking so hard to find.
The answer came and it had absolutely nothing to do with me. The only thing it had to do for me was that I was a vessel, a tool that God could and would use if I let him. God will never, ever force me or anyone else to be used by him. When I say use I don’t mean in how we think of it in human terms. I hear the word use and I think of something being used for someones benefit and thrown away. When God uses me it encompasses everything that is pure and amazing. It has everything to do with filling me up and in the process of experiencing his love for me it flows out to those around me. When God uses me I end up more loved, wanted, and cherished than before.
The first thing that began to set me free was getting angry and truly feeling the hurt, rejection, anger, and abuse I had received at others hands and at my own hands. Taking painful responsibility for the things I had done to myself and others through the pain that was in my life. Through this process I shed lots and lots of tears, but I also learned that it was not enough to umbrella forgive. It was not enough to give a one time forgiveness, because some of the things that had happened to me had individual offenses within what happened. They all had to be talked through out loud, sometimes sobbing and yelling it out and letting all the emotional voltage out. Once this happened then I began to get rid of feeling like I needed to be in control of my life. I was able to hand over my self-life to Jesus Christ and begin living truly in Christ-life peace.
When I could begin living in Christ-life, it was then that Christ was truly able to come live inside of me, which I thought he had, because I had been going to church my whole life, I had asked Jesus in my heart when I was six years old, and I truly thought I knew what I was doing. What I didn’t understand was the extend to what Jesus did for me. What it meant for him to be the Son of God, not the Son of Adam. Being a Son of God meant he was free from the curse that was placed upon Adam, it meant he could be perfect and complete to become our blood covenant representative. A Son of Adam could never have taken this role, because by birth we had the curse upon us. As I have learned about the various covenants God made with his people. All of a sudden the bible began to come alive, it began to make sense, and I began seeing the bible as I had never seen before.
I am no longer depressed when I hear, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Now, I know what this is really saying is Christ in me is the one who will work through me. Now, I know that it is not “I” who does anything, it is Christ alone in me, his vessel, his tool, that he uses to show the world how much he loves them. I take this role very seriously and when I blow it, because I’m human I do, it grieves me, but I know that he who strengthens me will also use this to show how much he loves me and prayerfully use it to show someone else how much he loves them too. Boiled down I can do nothing on my own, but I can do everything with Christ in me, working through me.