My husband and I stood on our cobblestone driveway watching flames curl around a measuring tape by our feet.
“I have been crucified with Christ,” I said softly. “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”
As the fire died down, my husband poured water on the twisted, charred plastic. It is garbage day today and, along with the trash, goes this symbol of the enemy’s whispered lies. I’m glad.
You see, the enemy wants us to believe in limitations.
“I can’t meet that person. I don’t know how to make conversation.”
“I can’t write for that organization. The articles are read by pastors and missionaries. I’m just a mom.”
“I can’t apply for that job. I’m not qualified.”
“I can’t mention Jesus to the neighbours. I’m sure they heard me raise my voice to my children yesterday. I’m such a big hypocrite.”
Do you notice the one thing that these limitations have in common?
It’s the word “I”.
Lies don’t have to be rational to be effective. They simply need to take our eyes off of Christ.
Last night at a prayer meeting, I asked Jesus to show me the key to overcoming the ever-present sense of failure in my life. Clear as a bell, the words came to mind, “It’s not I, but Christ.”
“It’s not I.” The truth is that we’re human. Humans have limitations.
But that’s not the end of it.
“Christ lives in me.” We have been crucified with Christ. That means that all of our limitations were broken at the Cross.
We need to take our eyes off of ourselves. It doesn’t matter if we “can’t” do something; we are dead! Our lives have been laid down at the cross. Jesus lives through us. His grace has covered us. His limitless power is at work in us.
A pastor who was praying for me last night suggested I go home, find a measuring tape and burn it to symbolize God breaking limitations off my thinking. As my husband and I stood under the night sky and watched orange flames lick yellow plastic, I felt such a sense of freedom.
This is a lesson I won’t soon forget.
There are no limitations. There is no measuring stick. There is only the One who overcame death and sin, the biggest limitations of all. There is only the cross. There is only Jesus.
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).
It’s not I, but Christ – the limitless love and power of Christ.