Today’s Scripture: Colossians 3:5-11
5 So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Don’t be greedy, for a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world. 6 Because of these sins, the anger of God is coming. 7 You used to do these things when your life was still part of this world. 8 But now is the time to get rid of anger, rage, malicious behavior, slander, and dirty language. 9 Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. 10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him. 11 In this new life, it doesn’t matter if you are a Jew or a Gentile, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbaric, uncivilized, slave, or free. Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.
The other day I was standing in line at a store picking up an order. I was at the “Pick Up” spot, but no one was there. So I casually asked an employee if anyone was staffing the pickup desk. She looked over at me with incredible attitude and said “No – you can get in line with all these other people.” She was not having a good morning.
But instead of responding with grace, I bit back. “That’s why I was asking!” Not my best moment.
As we have been looking at the letter to the Colossians you have heard me talk about the false self. But you may have been wondering – what exactly is the false self? It’s hard to describe, but basically it’s that part of us that is self-focused. Paul describes it more fully in this passage and labels is the “old sinful nature”. The false self is the way we act when our ego is in control and we have not fully grasped our new nature. The results are these behaviors that Paul lists. I’m sure all of us can find ourselves somewhere on that list!
But we are not trapped in the false self. We are not destined to live like that. Why? Check out the last sentence. “Christ is all that matters, and he lives in all of us.” Christ lives in you. That’s the truth. That’s why we can call the false self “false”.
Try to catch your false self in action today. Sometimes it’s easy – like when you snap back at an overwhelmed customer service agent. But other times the false self likes to hide. It will do anything to not be found out and challenged. But challenging it is what we must do. We’ll look at just how to do that in the days ahead.
God help us to see our false self today. May your spirit prompt us when we are living more in our ego that in Christ.
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