This morning, I dreamed that I was writing a song with these lyrics:
It’s not by my might, though You’ve made me mighty. It’s not by power, though You’ve placed it within. But by the Spirit of Jesus within me, I am new, I am new, I am new.
The Lord was speaking to me from Zechariah 4:6. In this passage, the angel of the Lord is sharing the work that the Lord is performing through Zerubbabel.
So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty. “What are you, O mighty mountain? Before Zerubbabel you will become level ground. Then he will bring out the capstone to shouts of ‘God bless it! God bless it!’ ” (Zech. 4:6-7)
I feel like He was reminding me this morning that the process of dying to the flesh and being a new creation through Christ is not a victory we win through might and power. Furthermore, we cannot approach others and strong-arm them into righteousness.
Ridiculing perceived selfishness does not motivate us to change; it simply sparks defensiveness or shame. We cannot demand people to change. In some ways, we cannot even demand it of ourselves. It’s only by the grace of God that we are able to make right decisions day after day. We have might and power, because Jesus lives in us and “greater is He who is in us than he in the world,” however, being transformed by the renewing of our minds is a spiritual process that is too difficult for us to achieve by our own willpower.
So we dive into grace again; not a lazy, uncaring Christianity that justifies itself with defensive blustering, but a deep understanding that through His grace I can live holy, do justly, give extravagantly, lead diligently, and honor others above myself.