He calls me what I am not as though I am

I’m re-reading “The Normal Christian Life” by Watchman Nee. HIGHLY recommend it!

Mr. Nee expounds on the foundations of our faith and how we live by faith in Christ.

It’s wonderful! Oh the depths and the riches of God’s gift to us in Christ… its more than we know or could ever fully live out, yet we go through this life to know Him more and to be transformed into His very image.

I ran into Mr. Nee’s reference to Romans 4:17 while reading and had to stop and just chew on it for awhile.

“…God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did.” -Romans 4:17

This is the whole story of how we live by faith.

God, who gives life to the dead, who called Abraham a father while he was practically dead… this same God calls those things which do not exist as though they did. He calls me righteous, though I am not. He calls me spotless, though I am not. He calls me a woman of valor, though I am not. And He’s not just playing make-believe. What He calls us He MAKES US! He called nearly-dead Abraham a father while he had no children and in the right time Sarah and Abraham conceived Isaac.

It’s not pretending I am what I’m not as a Christian. It’s seeing that I am in Christ.

My sins are wiped away by His blood and my sin-producing factory (my flesh) died with Him at the cross. I died. I don’t live anymore. Whatever I may do in my flesh is just death. But even greater than this dead woman I am is the LIVE woman I am in Christ.

Christ rose from the dead and I rose with Him, cause I am in Him. My life is hidden in Christ in God. All that is in the risen Christ is mine. And all that is in Him is not unattainable for not only am I in Christ, but Christ is in me! He lives out His very life in my soon to perish body. He makes me righteous. He makes spotless. He makes me a woman of valor. He makes me love with agape. He makes me intercede boldly. He makes me speak the truth in humility. And on and on, just as with Abraham, IN HIS PERFECT TIME, He produces in me exactly what He calls me in Christ.

It is my hope and my joy that my God calls me to the impossible, and the very fact that HE is doing the calling makes it sure that HE will also do the producing of that new-impossible life in me. I am not anything He calls me to be apart from Him who makes it so!

So I wait. I worship. I thank Him for His promise. I repent and cry out for help in my unbelief. And then I carry on listening and worshipping and praying and praising and waiting and lo and behold I see Him producing fruit in my life I am unable to bear on my own!

What a mystery, what a wonder!

It’s not by sight dear ones. It’s not by working hard. It’s not by trying to make it happen. That only creates Ishmaels (I have a few of those). It’s by believing that though we are barren spiritually, and dead to the ability to be who God calls us to be, in Christ we are all of who He calls us to be. Just in believing that, in thinking on Christ, in praising Him, in prayer to Him, in searching the word for Him, in revelation of Him, we are transformed into what we are not!

Oh Father, make us to know increasingly who we are in Christ. We want to know Christ! We want to be conformed to His image. Help us to believe that You will do it!

Isaiah 51:3

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