I've been awake these last few wee-hours of the morning repeating this line in my head over and over, "It's no longer I that liveth but Christ that liveth in me." I finally, finally get it. I mean, not just head-knowledge-belief it, but heart-soul-spirit-feel it.
As I read through the bible with this frame of mind, it all makes sense. I've been fighting this battle, saved and trying to still work my own good works, trying to figure out how to live in the Holy Spirit.
And now I see, it's not the Holy Spirit that helps me to live, He does it for me. The bible says that we are God's workmanship- His masterpiece- created in the Messiah for good works which God before ordained for us to walk in. So often, when I read that verse, my mind would conjure up images of me being transformed so that I could do good works. It was still about me. The truth is, Christ is in me. He has become me. I have decreased- not in some pious, "oh I'm so holy and such a great servant" way, but truly decreased because He has overcome sin- my very flesh. I no longer have to strive to be holy. The Spirit of God has the power to live through me if I am willing to be the vessel. We are not co-captains of this bodily ship. Either I am at the wheel, or He is. He doesn't want to just help me steer the ship. If we think we are being "assisted", then we have it twisted (because what we are really saying is that we are assisting Christ, right?). The truth is, He does it all. It's no longer I- no longer me attempting to control, no longer me moving and working and living, no longer me striving, but Christ. Christ alone working through me.
How can words possibly explain so great a promise and reality?