"Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Philippians 2:9-11
I read this verse this morning, and I instantly had an image in my head of Jesus walking on the earth. The first time Jesus walked on the the earth, I have to tell you, I wonder how creation reacted to Him. We know that the storm calmed when He spoke to it, the fig tree withered when He cursed it, but what about the birds, the beasts, and the livestock? Because I have this image of Jesus walking on the earth today, and every living thing stopping and bowing. Very much like in the Disney movie, Lion King, when the new prince is presented, every animal bows low- that's exactly what I see in my head. Every animal in creation bowing to worship Christ, only this time, all of mankind bows too. Mankind and animals together, bow their heads and bend low to the ground, to humble themselves before the one who is Worthy to be called Jesus Christ.
It's just such a cool mental image this morning. And yet, I don't think it's just some random image that was placed in my head for me to simply smile at. There's more to it. When I think about creation bowing and showing obeisance to Jesus, it makes me think that I need to spend more time in my Bible, learning more about what Jesus in me really means.
"To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." Colossians 1:27
The glorious riches of Christ in you... Now we can all agree that salvation alone is one glorious thing, and is worth everything- but I think it is worth noting here in this verse that riches is plural- meaning more than one. We're not just talking about salvation here, we're talking about taking the Christ that's in us and activating it. I'm talking about realizing that I carry Jesus with me all the time. Not just a passive Jesus, but an active Jesus. The very same Jesus who calmed the storm and cursed the fig tree. The very same Jesus who turned water into wine, fed the multitudes, and healed the blind. The same Jesus that lives in me also lives in you!
I talked about us being a garden yesterday, and God has planted within all of us, the same seed that He planted in Jesus. The day we ask Jesus into our heart and our lives we get so much more than a feel-good moment and an assurance of eternal life. We also get the DNA of Christ. Where He was one man, walking on the earth and changing lives everywhere He went, we are many. We are the multitude- and imagine the possibilities if we could really learn to be like Jesus and change the world around us.
The thing is, Jesus didn't do the things He did for Himself. He wasn't showing off, He wasn't displaying "his powers" to do good or heal someone. He was doing what His Father showed Him to do.
"Jesus gave them this answer: "I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does." John 5:19
Jesus did what He did for the glory of God- not for the glory of Himself.
"For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me." John 6:38
And He did what He did, to give us an example to follow as well. I honestly think that maybe as a church we are at a threshold. We're at a cross-point in time where we need to make a choice- we need to choose us this day whom we will serve. The world around us tells us we need to serve ourselves- they tell us that we need to do stuff so that we can be happy, so that we can feel fulfilled and important. The world tells us we need purpose and that it's okay for that purpose to be to make ourselves happy. I just think that it's time that we stop thinking about ourselves all the time. For me, there's that bit of conflict inside. Every time I hear someone say "I prayed for someone and their headache went away" I immediately wonder why they are telling me that. Are they telling me that to show off? Or are they telling me that to give glory to God? And that's where I am, I think. I wonder if I'm at the point where I would want to give the glory to God- or would a piece of me still want it to be about me.
I don't think I'd want it to be about me. Because God is everything. I can't take another breath without God wanting me to do so. And if He chooses to work through me, it's for His glory. It's to show those around me the loving God that I serve and adore. You know, every once in a while I have a crazy dream about healing someone. A few weeks back, I had a dream that I watched two children get run over by a train. They were literally sliced in half by the wheels of the train. And when the train passed, I walked over to these halves of children, and simply commanded them to be made whole. It was so matter-of-factly, like there was no choice for those bodies to stay broken, and they didn't. In no time at all, these children were running around, as if nothing had ever happened to them. When I walked away from them, it wasn't with this glowing feel-good feeling going on inside of me, it was almost like I had walked away from doing my job. I guess maybe I can't really explain the feeling, but it was like... It was like, of course those children were healed. There was no other option than for their broken bodies to obey what I said in Jesus' name.
I think when I get dreams like this, I'm getting a glimpse of what the Body of Christ is meant to be. We are meant to be matter-of-factly. We are meant to do everything that Jesus did while He was here on the earth- and our expectations should be for that. We should expect that when we pray for someone, they will be healed or delivered. It's not arrogance, it's assurance. Assurance that we are doing the Father's will, because He is a loving God and wants all His children to be healed and whole.
The life of Jesus is one worth studying. When we spend time in our Bible's, reading about all that He accomplished in the short time that He was on earth, we see the example of an older brother who so wants us to follow in His footsteps. And those are footsteps worth following in.