Romans–Passionate Christian Theology
It seems that “working out” is all the rage…until the holidays hit. The average person relaxes, lets down their obsession for pumpkin pie and fudge and “has it their way”. Then after New Year’s Day all the ads in the media bombard us with complete focus on ourselves, our diet and our physique. We are not so good at doing this on our own. Likewise we are not so good at “saving ourselves” either. Paul gives us good reason to place our focus on God, not self, for an extreme workout (and workin) that will transform our lives! Experience life on God’s terms…Come alive! Refocus.
Romans 8, The Message
5-8 Those who think they can do it on their own end up obsessed with measuring their own moral muscle but never get around to exercising it in real life. Those who trust God’s action in them find that God’s Spirit is in them—living and breathing God! Obsession with self in these matters is a dead end; attention to God leads us out into the open, into a spacious, free life. Focusing on the self is the opposite of focusing on God. Anyone completely absorbed in self ignores God, ends up thinking more about self than God. That person ignores who God is and what he is doing. And God isn’t pleased at being ignored.
9-11 But if God himself has taken up residence in your life, you can hardly be thinking more of yourself than of him. Anyone, of course, who has not welcomed this invisible but clearly present God, the Spirit of Christ, won’t know what we’re talking about. But for you who welcome him, in whom he dwells—even though you still experience all the limitations of sin—you yourself experience life on God’s terms.
It stands to reason, doesn’t it, that if the alive-and-present God who raised Jesus from the dead moves into your life, he’ll do the same thing in you that he did in Jesus, bringing you alive to himself? When God lives and breathes in you (and he does, as surely as he did in Jesus), you are delivered from that dead life. With his Spirit living in you, your body will be as alive as Christ’s!
Dear Heavenly Father, Work in us. We repent of self. Move in and resurrect these dead bones to come alive in Christ. Breathe on us, Holy Spirit as we focus completely on You all day long, no matter what task we are doing, breathe on us. Help us to exhale all worldview thinking. Lift us up to You and Your thinking, Your ways and Your love, mercy and grace. Life on Your terms is what we desire, dear Lord. Thank you for being with us and transforming us, even thought at times it hurts. Your best comes with pain. No pain, no gain. No loss of selves, no gain of You. We want YOU! Fill us with Your Holy Spirit, we cannot do this for ourselves. In Jesus Name, Amen