Live to die. At first glance that sounds strange. On second thought it sounds down right morbid. But it is truth...
This last summer, while my sister and I walked the Chicago Botanic Gardens, we came across these water lilies. We were able to see each stage of the plant. The seed sprouts to grow and bloom. Blooms wilt, falling away to reveal seeds which then dry up ready to start all over again. The plant literally lives to die. and it does this over & over again.
It is easy to see & accept this idea when looking at nature. But what if we were to take a deeper look ?
Easter week is a time to focus our hearts and celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. He is the ultimate example of living to die. Before He even stepped off His throne in heaven, His heart was set on it. From the moment He was born in a humble feeding trough, through out His ministry years, and into the last week
before His death; everything He said and did pointed to the moment that He would die for the sins of the world.
So, yes, we should celebrate our Messiah. We should soak in the height & depth of God's love for us. Proclaim His victory. But don't let it end on Sunday.
Live to die.
"Then Jesus told his disciples, 'if anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."
Jesus' words might rub us wrong if we truly consider the implications. They mean sacrifice. They are contrary to all that our current society would tell us.
"You are enough."
"You can have and be whatever you want."
"Dream big, go after it, you're worth it"
"Do whatever makes you happy."
"What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world
and forfeits his soul?"
Now hear my heart,
I'm not saying we shouldn't have dreams or goals. But are we willing to give them up for Jesus?
I am not promoting self deprivation. But are we willing to recognize our lack and find our worth in Him? Can I be known only for who Jesus is in my life. Am I willing to give up my rights? Deny my wants?
When I freely give Jesus my dreams, He removes my agenda & reveals His will. When I hand Him my unworthiness, He clothes me in His righteousness. When I surrender my rights, He enables me to love fully. When I deny myself wants, He provides just what I need without worry for tomorrow.
As I contemplate & celebrate the death and resurrection of my King, I have felt the need to examine my heart, my life. How far am I able to go? How much am I willing to give? Will I, like the lily bloom with all that I have for His glory and then lay it all at His feet; a living sacrifice? Because Jesus did. He gave all that He had and was.
When we first give our hearts to Jesus it is with hopes of future eternal salvation, but when I die to myself in the here and now, eternity can begin in my soul today.
It is in death that we find true life.