“To live is Christ” is only possible because Jesus Christ said “to die is gain.” His substitutionary death for us as our Suffering Servant has gained for him the love of his life. You. Me. And it has gained for us all that is his. His righteousness. His reward. His interceding grace. His life.
“To live is Christ” offers to us the very strength of God. Christ’s tireless love lives in us. His unfainting grace is our power. The power to soar, to run or just to walk. The power that comes not by striving, but by resting, waiting, and hoping in God’s love for us. The power that comes by removing all of your unloving expectations from yourself and others, and placing them all on the all powerful, all knowing, all loving God of creation.
“To live is Christ” means that our lives united to Christ are a preview of the coming rule and reign of Christ. The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, counsel and might, now rests upon us, just as it does upon Christ, for we are in Christ. Now may we together work each day to make his upside-down kingdom of love and sacrifice a right-side-up reflection of his coming kingdom of peace.
“To live is Christ” takes us moment by moment, day by day, through the life changing worship experience of Isaiah. Holy – Woe – Cleansed – Go. This is the pattern of all true worship and the process of all true change. A process we can now embrace, for Jesus has already taken away all our guilt and atoned for all our sins.
“To live is Christ” means we can and should expect the love of Jesus to overwhelm our lives each and every day. Why? Because his love has already overwhelmed every enemy of love there is – fear, death, shame, guilt. Now we can love freely from freely given love. Not purchased love, but a love that purchased us.
“To live is Christ” means that Christ won’t leave us in the grave of our death either. He won’t leave us behind the wall of our fear and shame. He is calling out to you and to me, Arise my love and come away. Meet me on the other side of the wall. Escape with me to the garden of my perfect love.