Greg Qualls - Three things Christians should remember

Three Key Things Christians Should Remember Daily

Paul tells us to “take every thought captive.” But what should christians be thinking about?  I have three suggestions.

My routine used to be the same every morning.  I would get all my stuff together to go to work, but I couldn’t find my keys.  So I would look in the usual places…nightstand, table, countertops, pants from the previous day, etc.  I would walk around the house frustrated that I was going to be late to work.  My frustration would finally come to a head, and I would ask Shannon for help.

She would then proceed to point out where they were…generally in my hand or coat pocket or somewhere very obvious.  This ritual continued almost daily until we finally installed a key holder next to the front door. Now almost everyday I come home and immediately put my keys on the holder.  It’s only when I forget to place them on the holder that I revert back to my frustrated and frantic self.

As Christians we need to do the same things with the truth of who we are in Jesus. There are some key things (pun intended) that we need to remember every day.  We need to place these thoughts in a prominent place every day so we remember where we are in relation to God.

You are worse than you think you are.

It’s easy to get caught up into todays self-esteem culture.  “I’m good enough. I’m smart enough. And doggone it, people like me.” is the mantra of our day.  If we aren’t succeeding, it’s because we just don’t having enough faith in ourselves.  Ego and pride are lifted on a pedestal.

But this isn’t where we should start our days…or even end them for that matter.

The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. (1 Timothy 1:15 ESV)

If the Apostle Paul says that he is the foremost…the worst of all sinners, what does that make me?  I’m pretty sure I’m in a close second, but I demand a recount.

Paul had a clear view of who he was in light of who Jesus is.  Paul failed in every way to meet up to the standard that Jesus sets.

If you’re feeling pretty hot about yourself, take a moment and compare yourself to Jesus.  If you’re having trouble, read through Matthew, chapters 5-7, and see how well you stand up to Jesus’ standards.  Once you feel completely and totally dejected, go ahead to the next thing you need to remember.

Jesus’ sacrifice is more than you can imagine.

Jesus doesn’t just leave us hanging. Jesus died for our sins…just let that set in. You deserved the same punishment that Jesus received on the cross, but for all eternity.  Let this reality sink into your soul.

He sacrificed more than just his life. He sacrificed his comfort in heaven.  Try to wrap your brain around this every day. God came from heaven, became a man, lived a perfect and hard life, and died a gruesome death to pay for your sins.

And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46 ESV)

He gave up the intimate relationship with the Father.  In a moment on the cross, the Father had to turn his back on Jesus because of our sin.  Because Jesus had taken our sin upon himself.

His sacrifice is also more than just a payment for our sin. He also gave us his righteousness in that moment.

For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV)

In that one moment on the cross, countless things happened for all Christians for all eternity.  Countless things happened for you. You were saved, forgiven, justified, sanctified, glorified, redeemed, restored, empowered, renewed, made alive, freed, blessed, encouraged, strengthened, called, commissioned, and countless other things.  You don’t have to live in your filth anymore.

For this reason, never stop digging for all the deep riches of his sacrifice. Stop and wonder at the beauty of what Jesus did in that one moment.  Always seek to see more.

You are loved more than you can dream.

Jesus’ sacrifice wasn’t out of a sense of duty.  He wasn’t obligated to die for our sins.  It wasn’t like we helped him move, and now he owes us a solid.  God in his perfect righteousness could have let us all go to hell and still been perfectly good and loving.

But he didn’t.

Once again, you need to let this sink in.  Instead of letting us get what we deserved, Jesus died for us.  He did so, because he loves us.

Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13 ESV)

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. (John 3:16-17 ESV)

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— (Ephesians 2:4-5 ESV)

You are loved!  You are loved by the creator of the universe.  You are loved with a love that is beyond our comprehension.  Trying to describe this love makes us sound like a two-year old trying to understand and describe thermodynamics. It’s impossible.  But that isn’t the point…the point is to live in light of this love.

I’ll let you in on a little secret.  Almost everything I write is first for myself.  I suck at remembering these things.  But these are the foundation of what it means to be a Christian.  I need to remember every day that it isn’t about me..but it’s about Jesus.  I need to remember every day that I’m not awesome…but Jesus is.  I fail time and time again.

My best days though come when I remember and focus on these truths.  I suck, but Jesus is awesome and he loves me.

Question: What do you struggle to remember most?  Share your thoughts on Facebook, Twitter or in the comments below.