Identification, Not Just Imitation

“Love is the beauty of the soul.”~~Saint Augustine
(BrainyQuote)

Today’s word of the day, from Merriam-Webster, is farraginous. Technically, the word means “consisting of a farrago.” But a “farrago” is “a confused mixture.” So, for the word of the day, M-W says “farraginous” means “consisting of a confused mixture.” That entire paragraph is “farraginous,” I think.

Today is Memory Day. It’s a day to celebrate memories. Or the fact that you have a memory. Perhaps even a day to consider supporting a charity that works with Alzheimer’s Disease patients.

It’s Monday again. Always seems to come around too fast.

Yesterday morning went pretty well, I think. It took me a few minutes to get back into the groove of playing keys in the worship band, but once I did, it was great fun. I’ll be playing again, this next Sunday, as well. I got several compliments from people on how much they either enjoyed my playing or (even better) how much I helped them worship. I prefer the latter of those, as that’s what it’s about.

Tonight, band practice starts back up as we begin preparation for our next event, which will be sometime in May for Southlake’s “Art on the Square” event. For that one, we will be back outside, at our usual spot in Southlake Town Center.

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL

(From Praying With the Psalms)

Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him, and he will act.
He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.
Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices!
Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath! Fret not yourself; it tends only to evil.
For the evildoers shall be cut off, but those who wait for the LORD shall inherit the land.
In just a little while, the wicked will be no more; though you look carefully at his place, he will not be there.
But the meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace.
The wicked plots against the righteous and gnashes his teeth at him,
but the Lord laughs at the wicked, for he sees that his day is coming.

Psalm 37:5-13

“The meek person is neither timid nor shy.” We constantly need to remind ourselves. Since “meek” sounds so much like “weak,” we confuse the two meanings. But meekness is a positive quality in a person, “a kind of serenity that is the opposite of the fretting impatience that, whenever it sees a wicked man momentarily prospering, jumps to the conclusion that God isn’t doing his job.”

“Great God of peace, I cast my cares upon you. Item by item, I turn my anxieties over to you. I commit my way to you in Jesus Christ. Amen.”

(From My Utmost For His Highest)

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Galatians 2:20

“The imperative need spiritually is to sign the death warrant of the disposition of sin, to turn all emotional impressions and intellectual beliefs into a moral verdict against the disposition of sin, viz., my claim to my right to myself.”

Thus begins today’s reading, “Interest or Identification?” When Paul wrote the verse above, Galatians 2:20, he did not say, “I will try to follow Jesus,” or, “I am determined to imitate Jesus.” He said he has been “crucified with Christ.” He has been identified with Jesus in his death. And when we become identified with Christ in this way, the Holy Spirit can impart to us Christ’s holiness.

The individual still remains. It’s not like the Borg, we are not assimilated (“resistance is futile”), but “the mainspring, the ruling disposition, is radically altered.” My right to myself is gone.

We live by faith; faith in Jesus Christ, not faith in faith. The same faith that Jesus has. We truly need to let that sink in.

Father, help me to fully give up my right to myself. Help me to live my life by faith in the Son, “who loved me and gave himself for me.” Help me to identify with Christ in his crucifixion, not just imitate, and not just follow.

Come, Lord Jesus!

Grace and peace, friends.

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