“Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.”
As we move towards Easter, I’d like to explore one way the gospel impacts our lives. At the risk of oversimplifying, Jesus’ death, burial, and resurrection gives us power.
Power that too often goes underutilized.
I used to think it was all about helping us overcome obstacles, challenges, or change the circumstances we were in. But, this isn’t what the Scriptures promise.
Instead, it transforms the person who receives Jesus, moving them from death to life, impoverished to rich, outcast to adopted child. You could say a Christ follower receives power to live and finally own their lives.
Unfortunately, we have few examples of leaders taking ownership for their lives. The news is filled with people who are ready to blame, make excuses, or exhibit cowardice. Even more offensive?
This same tendency exists within all of us.
It’s been like this from the beginning. Adam blamed his beautiful wife; Eve blamed the snake. It’s fair to say mankind has struggled with ownership ever since.
The Scriptures say, “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned.“ (Romans 5:12)
It’s as though we inherit a soul without the power to live. This is what happens when we blame, complain, make excuses, or give into our fears. We think we’re taking the easy way out, but in truth, we lock ourselves into a disempowered life.
“The moment we forsake ownership, we give up the power we need to change.” -Erwin McManus
Easter offers a path towards ownership of our lives without being condemned to a hopeless future. It’s all because Jesus took responsibility for His own life by doing something no one ever could, taking on the weight of all our sin.
“In Christ. God put the wrong on Him who never did anything wrong, so we could be put right with God.” (2 Co. 5:21 MSG)
But for this to happen, we must own our need for Jesus to bear the weight of our wrongs.
By doing so, we receive the power to be made right with God, and this is a gift, for we could never earn it. This gift empowers us to stop blaming, making excuses, and dropping into cowardly behavior.
Instead, we’re finally able to take ownership and start living.
“For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!” (Romans 5:17)
Let’s courageously own our lives by the grace of Jesus.