Incarnate Living

When the Son of God became human at the conception of Jesus, we say that He became “incarnate”.  Literally, He took on human flesh.  To our knowledge, Jesus is incarnate to this very day.  The last visible citing was Jesus ascending bodily into Heaven.

Jesus has an alternate way of being incarnate.  He does so through His people.  Our relationship with Jesus is more profound we may think.  Usually we dumb it down to an intellectual arrangement: I know Jesus’ actions and promises and I believe them.  That is so Western culture.

Jesus has done more than sway our thinking.  He has created a bond to us that defies total description.  The Bible refers to Christians as being the “body of Christ”.  This phrase is used metaphorically only once (1 Cor. 12).  All the other times it is referring to the union (call it spiritual, supernatural, mystical or whatever) that Jesus has formed with us.  In John 6, referring to the Lord’s Supper, Jesus says, “Whoever eats my body and drinks my blood remains in me and I remain in Him.”  That “remaining” is the bond to which I am referring.

In 1 Corinthians 6, Paul uses some other phrases to describe this union:  “the body is meant for the Lord, and the Lord for the body”, “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ?”, “But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with Him.”  While you are not Jesus, Jesus is incarnate in you.  The problem often is that you are also incarnate in your body.  Consequently, you don’t always reflect the presence of Jesus well.  Being more aware of the potential of Jesus working through you can help.

Maybe we can ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do (WWJD)?”  But the real question is “What will Jesus do?”  If you understand your holy calling and the unusual thing that God has done for you in creating a union with you, then you can go into situations and show love, patience, humility and Jesus will use His power to make these actions go much further than they would if it were just you doing them.  Realize that you bring Jesus into a room.

People will eventually recognize that you bring Jesus.  They will watch you.  They will ask you questions.  That may be a terrifying prospect.  Yes, you can mess this up, but humbly trust Jesus to use this positively.  Jesus’ work is not finished.  You can be a big part of it.

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