The concept of Jesus living inside of us can be a bit blurry to the young and the old. I have two daughters (ages 4 and 5) that sometimes struggle with this imagery. The other week I overheard my oldest daughter telling her sister that the reason their heart makes a “boom boom” sound is because Jesus is knocking and trying to get out. I quickly tried to explain that there isn’t a physical mini Jesus inside them, which only led to more confusion.
The truth is that even though Christians believe that Christ lives in us, we often fail to realize the reality of what is (or should be) happening in and through us everyday. As a society we are very quick to point the finger when something we do is wrong. The classic line “the devil made me do it” comes to mind as we try to remove whatever blame might be directed towards us. We are eager to pass things off when we don’t like the results. On the other hand, we are quick to take credit for anything good in our lives. “I earned my raise at work.” “I’m a good husband.” “I’m a really good musician.” “I led that person to the Lord.” We naturally try to find fault in others while pointing out our own strengths and accomplishments. I am not saying that we should walk around in false humility constantly saying, “Jesus made me do it”, but we should be able to recognize when he is at work through us. We should exult who he is higher than ourselves. This is what Paul is able to recognize in Colossians:
Colossians 2:27-28 To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29 For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me.
Paul recognizes that it is Christ’s energy inside of him that propels him to advance the gospel. When we flee from sin, when we pray for the sick, when we use our gifts it is Christ in us. We need to recognize daily that “Christ in you” is not beautiful imagery, but a beautiful reality.
Colossians 3:9 For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, 10 and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority.