Just some questions.
Galatians 4:19…”My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you…”
I wonder if we really want that. I wonder if we are really ready to want that. I wonder, I just wonder, if most of us have really seen this as the goal of the Christian life. I wonder what would my life look like if this were my goal even 80% of the time. I wonder, what would our community be like if we read this passage as a message to all of us together, as a community. I wonder, is what does “Christ being formed in you” look like to us. What do we think of when we hear the words “Christ being formed in you?”
Do we think of things we should refrain from? Like premarital sex, cussing, rated R movies? Like drinking too much, refraining from that “little white lie” or losing our cool in traffic?
Or, do we think of more positive things we do outwardly? Do we think of being like Jesus? Do we think of being people of grace to those around us? Do we think of seeking justice where we see oppression? Do we think of bringing a smile to a friend’s face? Do we think of that extra amount on the tip to the waiter who looks like they have had the bad day?
Or, do we think of more personal spiritually forming ideas like regular personal time with God and sitting in silence while reflecting on his work in our lives? Do we think of special times of worship and special times of prayer? Do we think of study of the Holy Scriptures or conversation with a friend about growing forward in our faith? Do we think of reflection on God’s continued grace in our lives?
What does it mean to have Christ formed in you? How does this happen for you? What does it look like?
As we think about what it means to “be the church” and “live as a follower of Jesus” isn’t this the goal? To have Christ formed within us? Do we pursue this? Or do we pursue other things more passionately? What things do we put in front of these things? Do we settle for just knowing about Jesus or do we run after having his life formed within us?
What do we need to do, be, think, say and feel in order for us to be better partners with the Spirit as He desires and does the work of forming Christ within us as individuals and as communities?