“Consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.” – Romans 6:11
Here’s a truth we all know something about: it is possible to exist without being fully alive.
So often we stumble and bumble, going through the motions, mechanically punching in and punching out, dragging ourselves through a caffeine withdrawal-like state. In those moments we can’t even claim to be on auto-pilot because at least auto-pilots move with a sense of purpose and destination. We’re more like zombies.
Zombies are scarier than other monsters because they look a lot like us . . . right after we roll out of bed. You may not have a hankering for brain tissue, but if you’ve ever wandered through life asking “what’s missing?” and “how do I feed this aching hunger?” you can relate.
Stephen Colbert once argued that Christianity is centered on a zombie experience: “Think about it: Jesus rose from the dead. He’s the original zombie, except you eat His body.” Thank you Stephen but the difference is far greater. Zombies come back from the dead to take life. Jesus came back from the dead to give it. That makes Jesus the anti-zombie.
As far as God is concerned, you are dead to sin, freed from its power. Like the prodigal son who finally looked up from the pigslop to realize he didn’t belong there, embrace your identity as a child of God made alive by Christ.
Raise me up God of life, from my bed, from my daily dread, and even from the dead.
Matthew Laney is the Senior Minister of Asylum Hill Congregational Church, UCC, in Hartford, Connecticut.