In Which State Do You Live?

Play/Pause Stop
To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ who are in Colosse: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. —Colossians 1:2, NKJV

If you do any traveling at all, sooner or later, someone will ask, “Where do you live?” followed by, “In what state is that?” I have given various answers through the years.

“I used to live at the south end of Lodi, California.” “I live in one of the Washington, DC, commuters’ ‘bedroom communities’ just outside of Hagerstown in the state of Maryland.” Or “I live near the northwest corner of the state of Alabama.” Or “Now I live in Georgia.” I have enjoyed living in different places, but moving is never easy, even when I have been convinced that God is leading. As I considered the joys and challenges of moving, I remembered the apostle Paul. In addressing his letter to the Colossians, he identified not only the city where his readers lived but also the state in which they lived. In Colossians 1:2, Paul—speaking for Timothy and himself—said, “We are writing to God’s holy people in the city of Colosse, who are faithful brothers and sisters in Christ” (NLT; emphasis added). Did you get that? The readers lived in the city of Colosse, but the state where they flourished was “in Christ.” How did Paul know the Colossians lived “in Christ”? Because both he and Timothy thanked God for “your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, for the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel . . . [that] bringeth forth fruit” (verses 4–6, KJV). All evidence of their state “in Christ.” Right now, some of us are living in a state of depression or the state of fear or the state of uncertainty. If this is the case in any of our lives, it’s well past time for us to move to the state of being “in Christ.” We needn’t dread this move because He has promised to help make this transition through His Spirit—as we pray, read His Word, and apply it to our lives and situations. The move may be a process, but who would not want to live “in Christ,” where faith, love, hope, and fruit-producing gospel truth lift our thoughts, prayers, purposes, and even our emotional outlook? Besides, in the presence of Jesus, we can experience “fullness of joy” (Psalm 16:11, NKJV). Whatever transpires in our geographical locations, we can still have a positive mindset and a sound state of mind when we choose, moment by moment, to live “in Christ.”

Carolyn Rathbun Sutton

Matutina para Android