I encourage you to die today. It really is the only way to live.
Fear wants to keep us from embracing the life that comes from death, so may the Word of God breathe faith into our hearts today:
For if we have been joined with Him in the likeness of His death, we will certainly also be in the likeness of His resurrection. For we know that our old self was crucified with Him in order that sin’s dominion over the body may be abolished, so that we may no longer be enslaved to sin, since a person who has died is freed from sin’s claims. Now, if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with Him, because we know that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will not die again. Death no longer rules over Him. For in light of the fact that He died, He died to sin once for all; but in light of the fact that He lives, He lives to God. So you too consider yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
This passage in Romans was in the background of my mind as I read Psalm 9:13-14 this morning
Lift me up from the gates of death,
so that I may declare all Your praises.
I will rejoice in your salvation…
Friends, our enemy holds us at the gates of death. Death rules over us because it reigns within us.
The only way to be lifted, to rise again, is to put the old flesh-man to death. To crucify your inner, guilty man with Christ so that you can be lifted with the holy, righteous, and blameless Christ.
Death to the death within.
But embracing death is scary. And laying down your life is hard.
For some of us today, it means confessing to a friend. It might mean admitting you were wrong. It might mean placing more barriers between you and the lure of a computer screen. It might mean giving up your time, money, and other resources. It might mean reaching out to someone who is difficult to love.
Obedience is always worth it.
Just ask Abraham, Moses, Jonah, David, Peter, Paul…or even just the older man or woman at your Church who has spent years knowing and loving God.
It might not be any fun in the moment, it might be scary, and you might not understand the whole picture right now, but the death brought about by obedience is always worth it because it will always lead to a life worth living.
We are fighting the good fight with you and praying for you over the next couple weeks.