Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Not "I" But Christ

Have you ever reached out your hand to take a cookie from a dessert plate and realized you were reaching for the biggest one with the most chocolate chips?? Have you ever not taken the biggest piece of cake 'just in case' someone sees and knows you are selfish? No one takes the last candy from the dish (although they are dying for it) but instead politely offers it to others!!

Photo Credit: Haven of Rest

Not Christ BUT "I"

We are a selfish people. Americans in particular are selfish. We live in luxury compared to many people in other countries and if we haven't been overseas we think we are struggling with life's trials. We only know our 'difficulties' and have no idea what others live without!!

Not Christ but ME!!

Have you ever been overseas? Have you ever seen people living in poverty along a hillside in shacks made from tin and wood, whatever could be salvaged to make a dwelling? 

Not's ALL about ME!!

Do you really know what it is to 'die to self?'

I like bible verses and songs with this theme. A book on this topic is rare, I think. 

The world has a totally opposite view!! In the world, we are encouraged to 'find yourself', find who you are through 'self-actualization;' and phrases like, "Take care of yourSELF," and "Look out for number one" are popular statements. 

Jesus asks us to loose our life, to think of others first, take up our cross, and basically to deny ourselves. I am learning to do this. It isn't easy!!

Motherhood has taught me many things about denying myself. Even non-Christian mothers learn the same thing. The difference often is that many mothers deny themselves for the sake of their husband and children but constantly resent it. We can 'do right' but complain all the way, all the while grumbling inwardly or outwardly too. 

I have found that I am so selfish and the more I write about it the more selfishness rears its ugly head!! Here are a couple things the Lord has been teaching me about diminishing 'I' and increasing 'Christ' in my life:
  • Accepting the blame when I blow it (recently, my husband went to the doctor...I had put the wrong day on the calendar - Ugh!!)
  • Not fussing over the mess tracked into the kitchen from outside (children grow up and leave waay too thankful and step over the dirt, shoes, brass horn cases, jackets, stray belongings, mud, and the pile of dishes in the sink!!)
Living intentionally and being conscious of God's presence in your life is a start. Practice His presence daily and moment by moment. This is something that I will do for the rest of my life as it doesn't take much to slip away from His precious presence.

Keeping these things in mind will help you know the reality of living out not I but Christ:
  • Keep in God's Word daily
  • Pray without ceasing
  • Be filled with the Holy Spirit
I have a plaque that hangs in my kitchen which says:

"If any man will come after me,
let him deny himself, and take up his cross, 
and follow me."

Not I But Christ

How has the Holy Spirit been helping you to decrease the "I" and increase "Christ" in your life??

In Christ Alone,

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  1. Dear Judith,
    Thank you for this excellent and convicting post -- this is a subject I wrestle with daily! Without the Holy Spirit, it is impossible to die to self, but with Him, all things are possible!
    Thanks so much for visiting and commenting on Saved by Grace!
    Your blog is a blessing and I am now following it, and I invite you to follow Saved by Grace also:
    Love in Him,
    Laurie Collett

    1. Yes, it through the Holy Spirit, Abiding in Him, and He in me that dying to self is even possible. Thank you, Laurie for commenting. You have a beautiful blog and deep love for the Lord. I love your picture on the Header of your blog. It looks like a volcano.

      Thanks for dropping by.


If you have gone a little way ahead, O friend, call back --
Twill cheer my heart and help my feet along the stony track.


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