Our Super Power


March 24

I would like to share some more words from St. Paul:
“What then shall we say to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but handed him over for us all, how will he not also give us everything else along with him? Who will bring a charge against God’s chosen ones? It is God who acquits us. Who will condemn? It is Christ Jesus who died, rather, was raised, who also is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? As it is written: “For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, no depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God In Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:31-39).”
“My eager expectation and hope is that I shall not be put to shame in any way, but that with all boldness, now as always, Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me life is Christ, and death is gain. If I go on living in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. And I do not know which I shall choose. I am caught between the two. I long to depart from this life and be with Christ, for that is far better. Yet that I remain in the flesh is more necessary for your benefit. And this I know with confidence, that I shall remain and continue in the service of all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that your boasting in Christ Jesus may abound on account of me when I come to you again (Philippians 1:20-26).”
St. Paul moved forward boldly in an uncertain and dangerous world. He was relentless. He did have some advantages. One, he was very smart, very, very smart. Two, he was a Roman citizen, and that gave him some advantages in the empire (we see this described in Acts of the Apostles). Many people had a lot more than that going for them, and didn’t do nearly as much. He had a confidence that was not based on himself. We see that he gets through a lot of really tense situations and survives with God’s protection. Of, course, he is eventually executed. It isn’t about how long our earthly life lasts, but how we serve the Kingdom while we are here.
We don’t have a lot of hard data on what it’s like in heaven, but I’m pretty sure there’s no one there saying, “OOOOOOOOOOH, I wish I’d lived longer on earth! I wish I’d been able to get to Disneyland!” I think whatever happened or did not happen here, we’ll be perfectly happy. We were made to love life, to seek to revere life, and to try to preserve life, but love the Kingdom more.
We read in the Book of Revelation “Now have salvation and power come, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Anointed. For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, who accuses them before our God day and night. They conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; love for life did not deter them from death. Therefore, rejoice, you heavens, and you who dwell in them Rev 12: 10-12).”
This requires focusing on what is truly important. Again we see St. Paul: “Therefore we are not discouraged, rather, although our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this momentary light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to what is seen but to what is unseen; for what is seen is transitory, but what is unseen is eternal (2 Corinthians 16-18).”
And also: “[B]ut he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ I will rather boast most gladly of my weaknesses, in order that the power of Christ may dwell with me. Therefore, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardship, persecutions, and constraints, for the sake of Christ; for when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Corinthians 12: 9-10).”
The more we grow in faith, the more we are focused on that which is eternal, and can appreciate and deal with the things of this world in their proper perspective. It is not that we are indifferent, in fact, we become more involved because we see the eternal significance of what we do in the moment. Our faith is imperfect, but the stronger it grows, the more powerful we become. We still get frustrated and upset, but we cannot be stopped. Our superpower is our relationship with Jesus Christ. We cannot be destroyed because we give our lives as gift. We do not have X-ray vision, but we look to that which is invisible and eternal.

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