I wish to encourage your appreciation of being “in Christ”. Appreciation, is one of those words we often associate with how we respond when getting what we want. Well, the opposite is true for the Believer! We appreciate God because we didn’t get what we wanted, or deserved. Instead, we got Christ! Furthermore, getting Christ was purely because of God fulfilling His loving, sovereign will in our lives, and that for His glory!
We all used to be among those who lived for their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ (Philippians 2:21). You and I alike were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked… (Ephesians 2:1-2). But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, …made us alive together with Christ… (Ephesians 2 :4-6).
In 1 Corinthians 1:28-31 the apostle Paul heralds a profound gospel crescendo to the Corinthian Christians, declaring the staggering accomplishments of God, through Christ, for His glory and our blessing. God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. And because of him (God) you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:28-31).
Let’s rise in appreciation today, speaking well of God, because He robbed us of all personal boasting by sending His Son to become wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption for us. Christ became everything that we could not do for ourselves, nor did we want to. Christ fulfilled every requirement of His Father on the cross, meaning , we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ (Romans 5:1). His substitutional death and resurrection has become for us everything the Father required, yet we were unable to satisfy. What’s more, God’s choosing of us had nothing to do with any beauty or merit on our part, but wholly because of His gracious mercy – His amazing love.
The more we focus on Christ, the greater our sense of appreciation becomes, because self-righteousness is excluded, starved of its boasting. Don’t allow the worldly attitude of thinking that the Christian life is all about you to have any place in your heart. This wrong perspective will deprive you of the blessings that come from selflessness. Rather, Christ centred thinking elevates God’s glory while growing our grateful appreciation for His undeserved salvation and the security we enjoy in Christ.
- Keeps our spiritual perspective correctly focused on Christ
- Expresses and extends our joy and hope
- Develops our longing for Christ’s return
- Draws the curiosity of the unsaved people you rub shoulders with, creating opportunities to share the gospel with them
- Is a passionate expression of the Holy Spirit who lives within us, as He focuses everything on Christ
- Unites believers together in service for the Lord and gratitude for each other
- Enriches our sanctification and spiritual maturity