My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Galatians 2:20

If we are inclined to be messy, tatty people, who inherently pull away from authority, buck the rules how can we stay focused on the Cross, focused on Christ, focused on the God that lives within us?

I ask that question of myself daily, sometimes more than that. The Truth will set me free. I will never know the whole truth and rather than that being a tension, I embrace the unknowingness of me and the knowingness of God. How could I? No matter how long I studied, no matter how enlightened I became, I am human and am given a simple knowledge that a human can understand.

Situations pop up out of the blue, that people find hard to cope with, addictions rear their head, long-forgotten habits become new habits, we have to stay close to Christ to get through these times and yet, with each person, with each situation, the natural inclination is to fall back on ourselves, become self-sufficient in our situations.

A consultant doctor once cried whilst giving me the news that he thought was devastating, I remember that. I was too numb at the time to comprehend the situation, realise that for him, he was telling me there was no hope. In hindsight, I could’ve told him about the Hope, that hope is found in Jesus alone. But I didn’t, I blandly accepted the diagnosis and the tears and left. My human armour was fully in place, nothing was going to topple the walls that surrounded me.

A few years later, at the funeral of a very dear friend, in another country, the first of many walls began to crumble. Standing in the midst of human judgement, “What’s she doing here?” they hissed, instead of a new wall being built, one crumpled like a piece of paper in the wind.

Two more years and surprisingly enough another situation appeared like an ugly eyesore in a beauty spot. All previous knowns became unknown, I defy anyone not to be even a little shaken by the truths I was being told, the physical evidence was apparent, numbly I accepted this into my normal. In my experience up to that date, further buildings would need to be constructed, turrets and gatehouses, drawbridges and portcullis. “Defend the battlements!” No new construction started instead of a meandering car journey took me past a building, not a castle, not a house, but a home.

In visiting the home, my defences weakened, slowly at first, until not so long ago when the entire armament fell away, I was defenceless, but not alone. My God was living in me, I no longer live in the previous shell of a person, I live because Christ lives in me, I breathe because of my God.

Situations arrive still, but instead of plotting with architects to rebuild the walls, I fall into the arms of my Father, I rest in the crook of those arms, I find strength in Him alone, I do not have the strength to deal with everything that happens to me, I do not have all the answers, but I know that with Christ all things are possible and situations no matter how horrific, how basally inhumane, can be dealt with, knowing that Christ is there with me, holding me.

Now all I have to do is give up smoking....addictions eh!