To have Jesus, to be with him, means that he lives his life out in you. It’s not just a matter of knowing you’ll go to heaven when you die, that’s actually very little about our life in Christ.
We are called to be in Christ, to have our mind on the things of God, and not the things of earth. Jesus tells us to “Store up treasures in heaven where moths and vermin do not destroy, and thieves do not steal.” – Matt 6:19-21
This all makes sense when you think about the void that we as humans try to fill with activities and possessions (keeping up with the Joneses etc.)
But what about when it has to do with your overarching mindset about security, safety and comfort?
What about when it has to do with your safety, and the safety of your loved ones?
When it was getting close to Jesus’ time to be handed over and executed, he told his disciples about the things to come, and Peter was very outspoken, “This shall never happen to you”. Jesus’ response was suprising. He said “Get behind me satan, you are a hindrance to me, for you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”
Jesus describes Peter’s love for his teacher as “the things of man” because it was clouding his ability to see God’s plan, and allow it to be played out.
Jesus is calling us into a relationship with the Father such that God himself is our father, and we are like children following his lead. This dynamic takes practice, not just to recognize it, but to breathe it. It is very very easy to have our minds on the things around us, and not “set our minds on the things above” (Col. 3:2)
The dynamic of our relationship with him is to be one of transformation.
It means you become a different person, not by brute force or by willpower, but by engaging in relationship with him he changes you to see the world differently. To see even the most daunting of trials as opportunities for God to work, times when you know Jesus will be near.
It’s very hard for me to see a situation that could endanger my wife and my daughters as somewhere God is at work, but part of my faith in Christ is to trust in him always, and to remember that his is over the world and the things that frighten me.
I think there is an invisible world that is all around us where God is at work. Jesus calls it “The Kingdom of Heaven”. It’s how God answers prayers, and how divine appointments happen. It’s where we tap into the presence of God and find he’s near when we think he’s far. I think the transformation that happens in believers of Jesus has to do with them realizing that God is not far off, but close by, and for brief moments, we trust him, and we change. It is a life source that enables us to be bold in times of trial and terror. It is what enables us to “walk with Jesus”, to be with him every moment, in our day-today.
Being in the kingdom of God is what allows us to see God as father, and to walk with him as a child, trusting and seeing the “things of God” in spite of our perceptions, in spite of our fears.