The best love we can bestow on another is to facilitate their being who they are. Your best expression of love for yourself is more than self-acceptance. It is to flourish as the you that is you. There is nothing more precious than the unique gift that is ourselves. Genuine freedom is to be and to live as who we were designed to be.
‘God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you’ EX 3.14 NIV.
In the new covenant this statement has a new creation dynamic. In Christ we are liberated from a false life in Adam to the true life of becoming who we are.
Genuine life-giving authority clothed in spirit and life is ours when we are who we are in Jesus. When Christ is our life we are truly the sons/daughters of God, the progeny of I AM. Here we are truly our unique selves created to multiply the image of our Father and His life-giving ways. We are lesser I am’s as sons of our Father. We are who we are and authorized to be express His life by being ourselves. In law and in Adam we are distortions of ourselves. When Christ is our life we are worshipers in spirit and in truth. As a result we are who we are in spirit and in truth - the sons of God.
A key difference between the old and new covenant is living in conformity versus living in life. With Jesus as our life we are living in life personified. In religion we get to be clones of conformity. When Christ is our life we become who we were created to be - life-giving spirits who multiply God’s Kingdom of diversity and joy in the earth.
The model of being, indeed of being yourself is Jesus and His life in Father. When in Jesus we live, move and have our being we daily become more the person we were created to be. How important, then not to live from the law, from a belief system, an abstraction or any teaching that makes Jesus less than He is. Reject theology that distorts and detracts from what He has accomplished for you. A defective view of Jesus and His accomplishment makes a lesser and incomplete you and warps and paralyses the community of Christ.
A misguided view of yourself that arises from a distorted Christ and a lesser gospel is a subtle and effective ploy of the Enemy to rob us of identity, potency and purpose. A diseased theology will not produce a healthy community. Knowledge of the anointing, the Spirit and His gifts will not help us if we are living from a gospel that is unsound and limiting of our being. Having a ministry and service is not a substitute for living in the new covenant. Jesus came to set us free from all encroachments and impediments that bind our design and reason for being. He said, Quoting Isaiah, ‘I have come to set the captives free and bestow on you crowns of dignity and humanity that certify you in the fullness of the Sons of God.’ Well that’s a paraphrase but it’s in the spirit of what He said.
‘The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
2to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor’ Isaiah 61.1,2 NIV.
Love originated in the trinity. It comes from the relationship of Father, Son and Holy Spirit to each other, from their living for each other yet being themselves; from enfolding each other in love, yet never suffocating who each is and by this love facilitating who each is meant to be in spirit and in truth.
The trinity, the Holy Family is love lived out. It is the model for marriage, family and community. The trinity and its ‘all for one and one for all’ is what it means to say that ‘God is love.’ Another expression is ‘I and the Father are one,’ and yet another expression of love is the person and life of Jesus Christ. To see Jesus is to see our Father and to see our Father is to know love. God is not the home of stoicism and severity. He is the home of love, acceptance and belonging. We are one in Christ because Christ is one with the Father and the Spirit.
Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty - liberty from loneliness, rejection, the pressure to conform and the suffocating demands of religion. Living from religion we may not be aware that we are suffocated. Such is its deceit. We will just be dull in spirit and lacking in discernment.
Religion will make us less than we are - always. Captivity to Jesus will liberate us from religion, make us real, life-giving people of vision and purpose. The purpose driven church comes from people for whom Jesus is life; from people who are in Christ and as a result in their Father; from people who are nurtured in their uniqueness and true identity and purpose in the Spirit of Sonship that flows from our Father.
Religion dulls the reality of God and smothers you. In the knowledge of good and evil there is nothing else other than death. In the new covenant there is Christ your life. To see Jesus is to see yourself. He is the mirror of your life, your personality and purpose.