For years I had this phrase written on a small 3 by 5 card and posted on my mirror. I wanted it to be the first thing I saw when I stumbled out of bed each morning. When confronted with my dis-shelved face, I wanted to also be reminded of my Savior.
You would think that this exhortation is completely elementary, and one that no mature Christian should ever need to hear, but that is simply not the case. We all need to be continually reminded precisely because we easily forget.
It is so easy to get so caught up in living the Christian life that we forget the Christ for whom we are living. In the midst of all of our activity, we can easily become more aware of what we are doing for God than what God has already done for us in Christ.
When we look in the mirror and focus only on ourselves and our accomplishments, we walk away either puffed up with pride or derailed by despair. Either way, the roller-coaster of our performance is a miserable ride. On the other hand, when we remember Jesus Christ, we are aligned again with ultimate reality, and that reality should instill courage in the heart of every Christian because of who Jesus is and what he has done for us.
Fix Your Eyes on Jesus
Jesus is the image of the invisible God (Col. 1:15). He is our Creator and Sustainer (Col. 1:16-17). Ultimately, everything exists for him (Col. 1:16). This means that my life is more about Jesus and who he is than it is about myself and what I have done (or not done) for him. Indeed, it is only when I remember Jesus Christ that I remember who I really am. Looking at Jesus, I come to grips with the fact that I am a sinner. I could never earn God’s favor or merit his love. My sin nailed Jesus to a bloody Roman cross.
Nevertheless, when I remember Jesus Christ, I remember that I am a sinner who has been mercifully saved by the grace of God (Eph. 2:1-10)! I am now a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17). I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life that I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself up for me (Gal. 2:20). Though I have fallen miserably short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23), I have been justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus (Rom. 3:24). I have been declared righteous in the sight of God, through the righteousness of Christ, and I am now accepted by God in him! Amazing.
- So, when I start to worry and fret about my performance and my accomplishments, may I remember Jesus Christ.
- When I try to busy myself thinking that I can earn God’s favor through my obedience, may I remember Jesus Christ.
- When I am having a hard day at work and difficulties are rising, may I remember Jesus Christ.
I could forget everything else I have ever known, everyone else could abandon me and I could lose all that I have, but if I can remember Jesus Christ then I know everything I need to know. If I remember Jesus Christ, I am looking to the One who can sustain me, the One who is the author and perfecter of my faith, the One has everything I will ever need.
I still find it fascinating that at the end of his life, the Apostle Paul’s most practical advise to Timothy when urging him to faithfulness was simply to “Remember Jesus Christ” (2 Tim. 2:8). Yet, I have found in over seventeen years of following Christ that I have never outgrown the need for that simple and yet profound and life-giving reminder. May it always be before me – and you – and may we all live continually remembering Jesus!
I have since ditched the 3 by 5 card and I now have a much nicer sign, custom-built by a local farmer in Franklin, but the message is and will always be the same:
“Remember Jesus Christ” (2 Timothy 2:8).