“I am crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” — Galatians 2:20
This past week I had opportunity to go to one of my favorite places to have coffee in the morning – Panera’s in the local RiverTown Crossings Mall in Wyoming, Michigan.
Having once had a job that I went to every morning for the past five years, I always went to Panera’s to have my morning coffee and time to just read. That, and I came to know many folks that visit the place as regularly as I did, and I miss them.
While sitting there in my favorite spot, a lady came up to me and said, “I don’t know if you remember me but you use to work for Arby’s and I came in all the time.” My face lit up. I knew who this lady was and we briefly played catch-up. Then as she and her now grown daughter began to leave, I thanked her for taking the time to stop and say “Hi” to me.
There was a time (especially while growing up) I strongly desired not to be forgotten. It was so important that when I left my life here on earth, I especially did not want to be forgotten … even if I never made any major contribution to society or had lived some fantastic life according to the world’s standard of achieving “success” or “fame.”
Growing up — never fully being “loved and accepted” — feeling more like I was more of a hindrance than a blessing to my parents … it was hard for me to know what my value really was.
Over the years I involved myself in things that gave me a certain amount of value and then identified myself (value) through my marriage, my children, etc. Then people would remember who I was, I felt.
I accepted Jesus Christ into my heart at age thirteen, yet didn’t really knowing Him, and who I am in Him. I was always searching for ways in which I would not be forgotten by those who I loved, whether I was at church, work, home, friends or family outings and the like.
In just this past year the truth and reality of who I am in Christ, that it is not “I” who lives, but Christ who lives in me, has become such a revelation to me. “He kept me as the apple of His eye.” (Deu. 32:10). I no longer have to prove myself — He loves me no matter what! I am accepted in the Beloved.
More and more as I grow closer in my relationship with my heavenly Father, I want Him to be remembered – represented – not me. Giving up my rights to myself for His rights to live in me, and live His life through me.
I was out grocery shopping yesterday with my oldest daughter, Sarah, and we ran into a gentleman at the check-out stand (again someone I once knew) who I hadn’t seen in several years, and I said “Hi” and we chatted. As we left, Sarah said, “I can’t go anywhere with you where you don’t run into someone who knows you or visa verse!”
I shared with my daughter that no longer matters anymore about who does or does not know me … but it’s all about knowing Christ who lives in me. Placing and keeping my focus on Him gives me great peace because I no longer have to be concerned about me, myself and I. I may be taking baby steps at this point in my life, but I am pressing forward, and that is a miracle in itself!
Christ will be remembered long after I am gone. He is still alive today. Oh is He ever! When I go to be with Him in my eternal home, I can only hope and pray that I left more of Him behind in this earthly world … than me.
“Christ in me, the hope of glory” — Colossians 1:27
I am His,