It came in the mail yesterday, a green box from a woman I’ve never met, filled with grits and peanut butter cups…and a card.
I go to the pantry and count the bags of grits I have there: nine! And the bags of peanut butter cups: ten. I can’t keep up with all this precious woman sends me. She made it her mission to keep me stocked on two things I can’t get overseas while I am on furlough. My cup truly does run over.
Words can’t express what a blessing this faithful woman has been in my life, how God has used her little notes and gifts and years of cards overseas to encourage me.
Her name is Pam and I’ve never met her. She got my name at a mission’s conference and committed to pray for and encourage me. Through the years, this one woman has faithfully done just that.
So yesterday, when I posted from my past, revisited the ruins, remembered exactly what I’m fighting, God knew I needed grits and peanut butter cups.
He knew I needed a green box from a woman I’ve never met and a silly little card that I put up to my face twice yesterday and that I’ve tucked away for another day…maybe for today and tomorrow and every day after that.
Remembering your roots can be dangerous. The past holds powerful cords that try to entangle you all over again if you get too close. Best to revisit the past only when tethered to the Anchor. Only then can we lower ourselves into the dark ravine, the pit from which we were dug, gather the treasure of remembrance needed, and ascend back up to walk by faith.
“Since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him…” Col 3:9-10
Sometimes a green box can help us practice “dead reckoning.”
“Knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin…even so, reckon yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.” Romans 6:6,11
When the past presses into your present and tries to tell you who you really are and he comes with proof, even has photos and yes, it sure looks like you…that’s when you need to reckon yourself dead.
Because it’s not you who walks in that skin anymore. It’s not you living and breathing and moving. It’s not your blood pumping, it’s not your mind thinking, it’s not.
For I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me… Galatians 2:20
And the only way for Christ to live in me is through faith, through reckoning it as true, banking on His very presence in me.Because His love not only gave Himself up for me but takes up residence within me and I am no longer me.
The mystery of “in Christ.”
I tear the envelope open, rip the paper getting to the card inside. “This card contains an actual HUG!” It reads. At the bottom, an asterick says “Instructions enclosed.”
Inside are the instructions:
1. Press card on face.
2. Apply pressure on left and right cheeks.
3. Think about how special you are to so many people!
Reminder: Repeat hugging process as often as needed.
It seems silly, a little card you’d chuckle at and keep for a day or two, then toss. Never really take seriously.
Sort of like the instructions to reckon the old man dead? Do we rush past the “dead reckoning”, thinking it too impossible or too vague? Do we search for something more or something different or something more suitable to our thinking?
Will we press in and learn the discipline of dead reckoning? Will I?
There it is, like instructions on a card, the way to cross the Jordan and take possession of the land.
I breathe deep, shaky. Excited. In wonder.
I pick up the “Hug” card and follow the instructions, except when I get to step 3, I do some substitution. I reckon the old me dead, the past gone. I reckon me alive unto God, the life in me is Christ.
“Look at Mommy!” one of the children says. It looks silly, mommy with a card stretched across her face…but I have a feeling it may just become a regular sight around our house.
A part of “dead reckoning.”
Yes, I’m tethered to that Anchor and all is well and I’ve received the treasure I came for and I’m moving forward in faith.
How about you? Are you moving forward in faith? What are your tools for “dead reckoning?”
Linking up with “Walk with Him Wednesday” where this week the focus is on living Christ-centric lives. Join in?