(This is the first of 40 daily devotional posts based on my pursuit of a deeper understanding and appreciation of the work at the cross of Jesus Christ. I’d love for you to journey with me on a daily basis for the next 40 days.)
I’ve just returned from a full weekend – have been in the wonderful city of Jakarta, Indonesia primarily to be with Morning Star Indonesia who are a part of the Every Nation network of churches that I’m a part of here in Singapore. I got to train the worship teams from our churches throughout the nation who gathered there that weekend, and lead worship for the conference with the team from MSI Jakarta.
I can’t express enough how overwhelmingly honored I was to be a part of what God did with my Indonesian spiritual family that weekend, and I fully believe that massive things are ahead in the immediate near future for our churches in Indonesia. Love them so much.
I returned last night and went straight to my home church EN Central service, and what a great sense of the Holy Spirit there was, with my brother from another mother, pastor Joshua Harris preached an excellent leadership honouring message based on the three sons of David, whilst Alarice led us in worship. Really is no place like home.
After a little post service date with wifey, I must say, I was SPENT. My voice was gone, and my energy followed suit. Most people say TGIF at the end of a long work week. For pastors like me, it’s TGIM: Thank God it’s Monday.
So I began to think for a moment: my “spent-ness” fails to compare to that of Christ at the cross:
“When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” (John 19:30 ESV)
I thought I’d start these cross-centric devotions from the end. The fact that Jesus had poured himself out completely – emotionally, physically, and even spiritually in honour of His Father to see all of humankinds place with the Father restored through his embracing of the wrath that was duly ours. No one in the history of humanity can define ‘being spent’ the way the Christ does at the cross. This is exemplary in many ways, but here’s a couple to ponder over:
1) “It is finished” – What a loaded statement to make at the conclusion of your life. Firstly, most obviously, his life was finished – totally spent. Secondly, there was nothing left for us to pay. At the cross, we come to the realisation that the penalty payment that is owed by us has been paid for by one who spent overtly to pay for it. Thirdly, our reliance on our utterly incomplete self-righteous attempts to keep the law of God were done with, because that clearly was not going to be the way for us to enter back in relationship with a righteous God. He fulfilled the law, by spending himself in his perfection as an unblemished sacrifice.
2) He didn’t hold back at all, and left this world the way he came into the world. With nothing. I often ponder how many of us would do the same – embodying his messages from his mouth, by becoming the Living Word. He left earth with his life fully poured out, and nothing in reserve. It’s my desire too, to leave earth having spent my life without a drop left in the cup, all for his glory!
Questions of the day: What are your thoughts on the way Christ has spent his life for you? Do you have any desire, to live your life spent for other? Why/why not?