“For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. For whoever has died is freed from sin. But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him” (Romans 6:5-8 NRSV).
We love adventure stories and the characters that bring them to life: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn or Captain Jack Sparrow, from Pirates of the Caribbean, Luke Skywalker, of Star Wars, and our brave gang in the trilogy, Lord of the Rings. There are many, many others we could name and have some great discussions in their adventures and how they faced the obstacles to achieve their desired outcome.
The season of Lent could be described as a journey of adventure as we go through a range of spiritual disciplines and challenges to our heart, mind, and soul, in our walk with our Lord to the cross. We have been told to deny our self, take up a cross, and follow a person who speaks of being beaten and having to die, but yet he also tells us that he will rise again in three days.
We are given words that we too will face persecution and hardship because of our commitment and obedience to one who calls himself “The Son of Man.” So we humble ourselves in prayer and fasting and seeking forgiveness and renewal as we make our trek with this Suffering Servant, focused on completing the will of His Heavenly Father.
I think we enjoy various adventure stories for in them we wonder what we would do in that situation, how we would react in the face of such danger. For many, the cross is a place of danger. Many have tried to go with Jesus toward Calvary, but finding the journey too hard, too painful, too high of a cost, they leave and decide to go it on their own never fully finding that missing piece to fill their heart and life.
Yes, going to Calvary is not for the faint or weak hearted. But surprisingly, for those that do complete the journey, they find in the death, life. That by dying with Christ, we find our real and true life; for as we die with Christ, we also rise with Christ Jesus to New Life!
Right now each of us is living and participating in the greatest adventure of them all, the story of God’s plan of redemption for those created in His image. We all have a part to play and God is using and working in each of us to fulfill our part for His purpose and glory.
I look forward to sharing in this epic adventure with all of you!