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Wide Open Spaces: Beyond Paint-by-Number Christianity by Jim Palmer



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Signposts: Daily Devotions

Written by Jim Palmer

Friday, November 19

The creation waits in eager anticipation for the sons of God to be revealed.
—Romans 8:19


I find at times that I am divided within and live in a fractured alternating between my false and true self. My false self is plagued by a sense of separation from God and seeks identity and purpose in the world. The alternative is my true self, which knows only union with God as a son grounded in his love. 

I believe God wants me to walk as a whole and integrated person—a "new creation" of which Jesus himself was the prototype for all humankind, a God-man firmly planted in this world and yet not of this world.

Since Christ's Spirit lives within me, I see that God has done all that is necessary for me to live as Christ. The cross and resurrection are a daily reality in my journey with God, whereby I acknowledge the death and powerlessness of my false self, and rise up into the reality of my true self. That’s freedom!

James Lane Allen wrote,

The vision that you glorify in your mind, the ideal that you enthrone in your heart—this you will build your life by, and this you will become.

I become a divided person when I "glorify" in my mind or enthrone in my heart visions of my false self. These visions are not especially creative and basically embrace dreams of being a noteworthy person without a financial worry in the world. Sometimes I think my false self would be satisfied if I were simply wealthy and famous, but then I realize this is a lie, because the law of diminishing returns would just crave more. The false self is never satisfied.

In his goodness, God planted deep within each of us a seed containing his divine DNA for becoming sons and daughters of God. In fact in God's eyes, we are already his sons and daughters, but God desires us to experience and walk in the reality of this identity. Christ's Spirit within us is "the Spirit of sonship, which cries 'Abba, Father,' and testifies to our spirit that we are God's Children."

Jesus Christ lived as a son of God, and he is now the vision enthroned in my heart and mind of who I must now become, not theoretically but in reality. Romans 8:19 states, "The creation waits in eager anticipation for the sons (and daughters) of God to be revealed."

I have a mental picture in my mind of the false Jim Palmer falling to the ground and dying, and the true Jim Palmer walking away free.

Help me today, God, to walk in the truth of who I am, your beloved child.

These Signposts originally appeared on explorefaith in 2006.