I am in them and You are in me, that they may become perfectly one -Jesus praying about His followers (you and me) to the Father, shortly before He was crucified (John 17:23).
I mentioned a few weeks back on Instagram that I'm working on a book about preparing spiritually, emotionally and mentally for labor and birth. Well, it's less of a book and more of a pregnancy companion, but either way, I'm working on it.
And by "working" I mean, slowly, very slowly, organizing all of my thoughts on how what I did during my pregnancy with Stella to prepare for labor changed everything about my labor.
One of the truths that I clung to for those 9 months and particularly during those 8 hours of labor was this:
All I need is Jesus. In Jesus I have all that I need.
I had been reading and journaling through Colossians. It's a book written entirely about Jesus (as most of the epistles are), but it's also about who we are in Jesus and what we have in Jesus all because of Jesus. In chapter 2, Paul is talking about the importance of being rooted and built up in Christ. And then he warns us to not be deceived by other philosophies, religions or traditions that are not of Christ. Then in verse 9 and 10 he says, "For in [Jesus], the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him who is the head of all rule and authority."
Basically he's saying, don't get sucked into that stuff, you know why?? Because of who Jesus is. All of that junk is worthless. Don't buy into the garbage. You don't need it! All you need is Jesus! In Him dwells the fullness of deity. He is God. You need nothing aside from Him. And guess what, if you are saved by the grace of God, you have already been filled in Him, by Him, with Him. And He has all authority. So don't sweat it. He's got it. All you need is Him and in Him, you have all that you need.
Now, this could easily turn into a theology lesson but I won't do that to you. Instead, can we just talk a little bit about what "the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily" actually means? Because it sounds so fancy and that in itself could be an entire book. It's so rich and loaded with beautiful and incredible truth. Let's just rest in that verse for a moment because I think if we can actually wrap our brain around it (or at least try), it would completely change how we see Jesus and ultimately, how we see ourselves.
For in Jesus, the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily. In Jesus, the whole fullness of deity dwells. That means the Godhead- 3 in 1, the trinity, Father-Son-Holy Spirit, all reside in Jesus. That last word "bodily" is talking about how Jesus is the visual, incarnate Christ. Jesus is God who put on flesh. He partook of flesh and blood and became the image of God for us to see. The writer of Hebrews says it this way, "The Son is the express image of [God's] person" (Hebrews 1:3). And John writes, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... The Word became flesh" (John 1:1, 14). Jesus, fully God, came to earth and became fully man. And in Him resides all of God and all power, rule, authority, and dominion forever and ever.
And "you have been filled in Him." Several other versions (I'm quoting from ESV) use language like, "you have been brought to fullness" and "you have been made complete" and "you are complete in Him."
Why would that be? Because, if you have Jesus, if you believe in Him and have accepted His sacrifice for your sins, then Jesus is in you. Galations 2:20 says it better than I can (duh): "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me." And if that doesn't convince you, maybe Jesus' own words will. Shortly before He was arrested and sent to be crucified, Jesus prayed to the Father and we get to read His prayer in John 17. From verse 20 on, Jesus is praying for "those who will believe in me through their word." In other words, He's praying for you and me. And He says this in verse 26, "I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them and I in them." If you have given your life to Him, Jesus is in you.
So let's take that a step further, because we can't just stop there. Christian, if Jesus is in you (which He is) and the fullness of deity is in Jesus (which it is), then guess what? You have the fullness of deity living in you. If Jesus is in me, then all that is in Jesus is in me. That is why the author of Colossians can say that you have been brought to fullness, that you have been made complete and that you are complete. Because, in Jesus you are complete. You have been filled. The end.
Should we take it a little bit further? Because I really think we should. I mean, there's a whole lot of security in that truth alone. But it truly doesn't end there. Here's why: not only is Jesus in you (John 17:26), but you are in Jesus (John 17:21) and Jesus is in the Father (John 17:21) and the Father is in Jesus (John 17:21,23) and the Holy Spirit is in you (1 Cor 3:16, 6:19) and you are in the Father (John 17:21).
Does your brain hurt yet? Mine sure does.
And what all of that means is that there is incredible unity and oneness to be had. It already exists and we are invited to partake in it! There is unity and security and oneness in Christ. And it is our's because of Jesus.
Ultimately the truth that we can glean from this is: you are secure in Christ. Not because of who you are or what you have done. Can we be honest here, you and me? We are nothing and have done nothing. We can do nothing. But in Jesus, through Jesus, because of Jesus, because of who He is and what He has done, you are secure.
And that is why I clung so tightly to this truth during pregnancy and into labor. Because, if I am secure in the Lord, then there is nothing to fear. I can trust totally and completely in His plan for me, no matter what that looks like. Everything can fall apart and yet, I'm taken care of. I'm secure. Or everything can go perfectly and still, I'm taken care of. I'm secure. The circumstances have no bearing if you are rooted and secure in Jesus. All that matters is Him in you and you in Him.
All I need is Jesus. In Jesus I have all that I need.