Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Who Do You Get Your SAS From?

In a very good post at Street Prophets, Rabbi Brian challenged folks:

It often feels easier to be a caretaker for others than to take a good, hard look at myself, acknowledge what it is that I want, and then do it. Also, being "selfless" looks good.

But, to be healthy, functioning adults, we need to put ourselves first. If not we are willingly -- and often unwittingly -- committing violence against ourselves. Putting others first is both exhausting and unfair.

Now, this of course started a very good discussion about the balance in loving ourselves and loving others.

The Christian witness is repleat with calls to sacrifice ourselves for others and for God. Elizabeth D, as she so often does, made a comment that sparked this post:
I think that acknowledging that we have cravings, wants, and needs, without the satisfaction of some of which we don't function as well (or eventually die), is a starting point. And then we can see how far we can move beyond those needs and thoughts of self, to a focus on others (can I "lay down my life for a friend"?).
To me the primary way I can "be there" to give significance, acceptance, and security to those around me is to seek these things for myself from another source so that I am not demanding them from those around me - think my wife primarily.

In a society that does not offer freely significance, acceptance, and security in ways that fit in with a Christian walk - that cannot be the source. Many of the political, social, and economic struggles in our country, and the world, come from folks demanding significance, acceptance and security from those, or from societies, who cannot, or will not, give it.

I try to draw as much of my SAS (significance, acceptance, security) as possible from my position with God in Christ. My affiermations are below:
Significance in Christ

I am the salt and light of the world: Matthew 5:13-14

“You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its flavor, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled on by people. You are the light of the world. A city located on a hill cannot be hidden.
I am a branch of the true vine, a channel of his life: John 15:1,5
“I am the true vine and my Father is the gardener . . . “I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in me – and I in him – bears much fruit, because apart from me you can accomplish nothing.
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit: John 15:16
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that remains, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.
I am a personal witness of Christ's: Acts 1:8
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the farthest parts 1 of the earth.”
I am God's temple: 1 Corinthians 3:16
Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?
I am a minister of reconciliation for God: 2 Corinthians 5:18
And all these things are from God who reconciled us to himself through Christ, and who has given us the ministry of reconciliation.
I am God's co-worker: 1 Corinthians 3:9

We are coworkers belonging to God. 1 You are God’s field, God’s building.
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realm: Ephesians 2:6
and he raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,
I am God's workmanship: Ephesians 2:10
For we are his workmanship, having been created in Christ Jesus for good works that God prepared beforehand so we may do them.
I may approach God with freedom and confidence: Ephesians 3:12
in whom we have boldness and confident access to God because of Christ’s faithfulness.
I am able to do all things 1 through the one who strengthens me.: Philippians 4:13

Acceptance in Christ

I am God's child: John 1:12
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name,
I am Christ's friend: John 15:15
"No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.
I have been justified: Romans 5:1
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
I am united with the lord, and am one spirit with him: 1 Corinthians 6:17
But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him.
I have been bought with a price. I belong to God: 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.
I am a member of Christ's body: 1 Corinthians 12:27
Now you are Christ's body, and individually members of it.
I am a saint: Ephesians 1:1
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus:
I have been adopted as God's child: Ephesians 1:5
He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will,
I have direct access to God through the Holy Spirit: Ephesians 2:18
for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father.
I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins: Colossians 1:14
in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
I am complete in Christ: Colossians 2:10
and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority;

Security in Christ

I am free forever from condemnation: Romans 8:1-2
Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.
I am assured that all things work together for good: Romans 8:28
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
I am free from condemning charges against me: Romans 8:33
Who will bring a charge against God's elect? God is the one who justifies;
I cannot be separated from the love of God: Romans 8:35
Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
I have been established, anointed, and sealed by God: 2 Corinthians 1:21-22
Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and anointed us is God, 22 who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge.
I am hidden with Christ in God: Colossians 3:3
For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
I am confident that the good work that God has begun in me will be perfected: Philippians 1:6
For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
I am a citizen of heaven: Philippians 3:20
For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ;
I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind: 2 Timothy 1:7
For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.
I can find grace and mercy in time of need: Hebrews 4:16
Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
I am born of God, and the evil one cannot touch me: 1 John 5:18
We know that no one who is born of God sins; but He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.
Source: A bookmark from Freedom in Christ Ministries

1 comment:

  1. I very much enjoy your writing. I am certain you don't need my encouragement in this, but please continue to do God's work.

    With love,

    Rabbi Brian


How to debate charitably (rules are links to more description of rule):
1. The Golden Rule
2. You cannot read minds
3. People are not evil
4. Debates are not for winning
5. You make mistakes
6. Not everyone cares as much as you
7. Engaging is hard work
8. Differences can be subtle
9. Give up quietly