Saturday, March 5, 2016

Experiencing the Fullness of Christ

How can we experience Christ?

I've heard a lot of ideas about that over the years. But it wasn't until I slowed down and listened carefully to Paul's prayer for the Ephesian church that I saw something I'd never seen before. Paul prayed, among other things, that they would know:

"...what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints..." Eph. 1.18

Where are the riches of Christ? Where is His glorious inheritance?

"in the saints"

That's me and you. We Christians are his riches. We, the church, are his inheritance, his treasure. 


In the next sentence Paul tells us that the church is Christ's body,

"the fullness of him who fills all in all." Eph.1.23

Where do we go to experience the fullness of Christ? 

All of Christ's riches, all of his energy and resurrection power are invested in one place, his body, the congregation of his people. There is nowhere else to go to live in his fullness but to the church. 

The place to find Christ is not a quiet place within ourselves, though, if we are his, he is there. The place to find him in all of his fullness is in the gathering of his people. 

This discovery has changed my life, and my attitude about what experiencing Christ is about. It's not so much a feeling, though there are a lot of feelings involved. Living as his body means living among his people. It means suffering with him among his people, often because of his people, just as he did. Experiencing Christ's fullness is not fun and games, any more than being our Savior was fun and games for him. 

So lets not let anyone or anything, any offense, any strife, any hurt, any fear, any bitterness keep us from experiencing the riches of his grace the only way we can - together.

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