And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. Genesis 1:26-27
As for me, I will behold thy face in righteousness: I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with thy likeness, Psalm 17:15
The problem with most of the church is that we have been focused on doing, on performance. We have thought that if we performed well enough we could successfully minister to others, bring unity to the Body of Christ and please God. Wrong, wrong and wrong again. It is not about our ministries. Really, we dont have ministries. It is all his ministry. So the only way we are going to accomplish anything lasting is to stop trying to do and start being. It is only in being that our doing has any lasting effect.
If we are focused on doing we will have a clouded image of spiritual things (1 Corinthians 13:9-12, 2 Corinthians 3:18, James 1:22-25). However, by being who we are, possessing and demonstrating the character of God, we will see clearly as face to face.
We can operate in the image of God without having the likeness of him but we will only have a measure of success. We will never quite measure up. Being enables us to do completely, fully.
Experiencing the height and depth of the love of Christ can only happen completely or in fullness when we possess his character. Possessing his character will enable us to ride upon the high places of the earth (Isaiah 58:14) where deep calls unto deep (Psalms 42:7), causing rivers of living water to flow out of us (John 7:38).
Dying to self is a part of the process of becoming like him. Often this dying to self is accomplished by tests and trials. However, tests and trials should not become a way of life for us. The purpose of tests and trials is to get us to overcome. We overcome by trusting him completely, by resting in him and by possessing his character. Positionally we have believed that we were crucified with Christ (Romans 6:6-11, Galatians 2:20-21) but I dont think we have experienced that reality in fullness. When we do, there will be no more need to die daily as Paul said he did. We will reach a place where we have done it once and for all as Jesus did. When we reach that place, our death will bring life to many just as Jesus death did.
What we are talking about is Christ in us, living his life through us. It is not about us. It is all about him. Colossians 1:27 speaks of Christ in us, the hope of glory. We have experienced Christ in us in a measure but I believe we are about to experience that reality in fullness. Lanny Swaim, reproduced with permissionPost published in: Opinions