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In Christ

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone the new has come.

2 Corinthians 5:17

What does it mean to be in Christ? Included in, counted part of, but there’s also an element of being ‘inside’ or surrounded by Christ. I think of the picture in John 10 of Jesus’ sheep. He is the door of the sheepfold, and those who come in through Him find safety in the fold, becoming part of His flock of sheep. Jesus, the Shepherd cares for and protects each one. Each sheep knows His voice, follows Him, and trusts Him.

In Christ, we are cared for and nurtured. Day by day, we are renewed inwardly by God’s Spirit1. God hears every prayer, and cares for us2. God knows what we need before we even ask3, and every good and perfect gift comes from Him4. By God’s power, we have been given everything needed for life and godliness5. In Christ, we have been given every spiritual blessing6. We are seated with Christ and have received an inheritance with Jesus – eternal life7.

In Christ, we are protected. Jesus already bore God’s wrath for our sin, and we are safe from God’s wrath and condemnation8. As such, we are also protected from Satan’s accusation9. We are given strength in Christ to resist sin and the devil’s schemes10, and fight our daily battles with confidence, knowing that Jesus has won the ultimate victory over sin and Satan11. Nothing can separate us from His love12 and no one can snatch us out of His hand13.

To be in Christ also means the old is gone, and the new has come. No longer do we walk to please ourselves. No longer do we return to our sin. We must consciously choose to put our sin, our old self, to death and pursue godliness. This is not done in our own strength, but in Christ’s strength. The Shepherd goes before us, and we follow him for we know His voice14. We look to God’s Word to reveal our sin, point us back to Jesus, and lead us in the path of righteousness15.

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation!

References: 12 Corinthians 4:16, 21 Peter 5:7, 3Matthew 6:8, 4James 1:17, 52 Peter 1:3, 6Ephesians 1:3, 7Ephesians 2:6, 8Romans 8:1, 9Romans 8:33, Revelation 12:10-11, 10Ephesians 6:10-13, 11Colossians 2:15, Hebrews 2:14-15, 12Romans 8:38-39, 13John 10:27-30, 14John 10:4-5, 151 Peter 2:24-25

Studio Update:

Mom and I took a quick garden tour Saturday morning to capture a few snapshots of what’s going on in the garden. Irises are blooming profusely, peas are up, and a vole’s eye view of strawberry plants. Peonies (not pictured) are starting to bloom. There are so many things coming up, getting established, and setting on blooms, and a handful of pictures just won’t capture how exciting spring is!

And as for art… most of my time has been consumed with trying to capture everything that’s been blooming in watercolor. Somehow, this is taking quite a bit longer than I expected, but I’m making progress. For the last two weeks, I’ve had a fridge full of ‘specimens’ that come out for an hour at a time to keep working on this picture. Too bad paint doesn’t capture the smells…I’ve really enjoyed having the lilacs and irises on my desk.

Anyway, thanks for stopping!