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Meditation 7*

Above, Where Christ Is

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ,
set your hearts on things above,
where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.
Colossians 3:1

The Lord God is the overflowing Fountain of all that is good! Whoever confesses this, is serious in this confession and lives accordingly, has spiritually arrived.

Of all that is good. Nothing flows or emanates from God to you except those good things, against which you may not complain but for which you must thank Him. If you cannot thank Him or you think to detect something evil, the source for that lies not in Him but in you and you alone. You are suffering from an illusion, if you do not recognize the truly good in what He sends.

He is the Fountain of all good. There is no good that does not flow from Him. Everything within you or your child that does not emanate from Him, is not good, is wrong and sinful, even though it may have the appearance of being good. Conversely, if there is something truly good within you or your loved one, that is not the result of your or your child’s efforts. It did not emanate from either you or your child, but flowed out to you from that Fountain of all good. There is not a speckle there to support a false self-image or to feed your self-justification. We are created in Christ Jesus for good works that God Himself has prepared in order for us to walk in, and for which we are to thank Him. The Scripture says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10). Therefore, when you do a good work, there is no room for the evil boast of the flesh, “That’s what I did,” but only for the clean thought of the Spirit, “That’s what God the Lord wanted to happen through my work.”

All good comes from a Fountain, a Spring. In other words, you do not draw the good out of the Lord God; you do not press Him for the good with your own strength and exertion. As water in a fountain flows towards you by the force within the fountain itself, without any exertion on your part, so, too, does all the good from the Lord your God come to you by itself, without any exertion from you. You do not draw it out of Him, but He sends it to you through the force of His self-sufficient love.

And finally, the Lord your God is the richly overflowing Fountain of all these goods. Faith can never expect too much. No matter how much you have already received, there is always more ready to well up. It is never exhausted; one outflow crowds out the other. Even if you have been saturated the good things, that super overflowing Fountain still continues to well up.

Therefore I repeat that whoever seriously claims that the Lord God is the overflowing Fountain of all his good things and lives accordingly, he has reached the goal. That is to say he is free from that inner cancerous weed of self-sufficiency and has become pure, rich and free as a relaxed and tender child of his God. He has been reshaped by God Himself.

But what are these “goods” that flow out of this Fountain to God’s beloved children? In short, they include everything that glorifies Him and that purges your soul. It is not the bread you eat or the abundance of your choice fruit. Well, yes, it includes all that. Why not, provided it is not only that. It does not even always include those. If your money or possessions, your food or fruit ever draw you away from the Lord God, then these are not the good. Where that is the case, starving from hunger were better for you, especially if that hunger leads you back to God.

Understand well. The good that wells up from this Fountain is a good for your whole person, both body and soul. It is not a transient or temporary good, not something for which you grope around in the darkness; it is an enduring and inner good. It can even happen that your soul is struggling with temptation, but for which you subsequently will be thankful. What seemed at first evil, later turned out to be good for you.

Once again, whatever wells up from this Fountain separates you from death and brings life. Out of that Fountain flows grace and that one rich grace takes on various forms of satisfaction and justice, of reconciliation and holiness, and forgiveness for the countless times you have forfeited the grace of God. Out of that Fountain flow every warning in your conscience, every self-accusation after committing sin, every tear of true remorse and each genuine childlike display of penance. Out of it flow all refreshing love, all lifting up out of the desperation of the soul, and every comforting recovery from anxiety and a fearful heart. There is still more. Out of it flow every word of warning, every call of admonishment, but also all urgings and invitations to love, all that keeps you from sin and draws you back to your God.

Every germ, opening and inner dynamic of faith comes to you from that Fountain. Every movement of the Holy Spirit, every turnover of your inner life, in fact, everything that contributed to your becoming a child of God originated there. To put it even stronger, never, no never has there been even the slightest spark of pure genuine love that did not come from Him. Never has a robe of humility look so good on you that was not from Him. If there ever was anything in you, however small, that shone or radiated love and attracted honour and praise from God, it was only through Him, the Father of lights, that these good gifts were designated for and came to fruition in you.

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Thus you’ve been shown the way. When you struggle to become cleaner, holier, more tender and warmer in sacred love, do not dig around in the dry bottom of your own heart, for that is not the source of these waters, but look up to Heaven. If those are the “goods” that you genuinely seek, well, then you no longer seek things that are on earth, but things that are above. But then be sure you seek them there and know the only Source from which they can flow your way.

The Holy Spirit calls on you to “Set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:1-2). That means that you need to be enticed and attracted not by the false tinsel and the deceptive enjoyments of the world, but that your soul needs to reach out to the glory of the heavenly Jerusalem.

But there is still more to it. “Setting your heart on things above” also means that you will not thirst after gold or pleasure or public prestige, but that you pine after doing good works, after love, holiness, that sound lovely, not in human ears so much, as in God’s. You need to thirst and be eager to bear the cross, have a clear conscience and stand upright and tremble before the Word of God.

None of these things are found on earth; they are in Heaven. Love is born in Heaven, not on earth. Everything that is clean, holy, self-denying and pleasing to God, does not grow in the garden of your heart, but comes down from above; it is sent to you. When the peace of God finally completely fills you, it comes as a precious gift that originally welled up from the Fountain of all good and from there flowed down to you.

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The entire truth is so deep and wide that there are still more treasures to be explored. We have yet to consider the title of this meditation, “Above, where Christ is.” This is a gem of a phrase that absolutely does not mean that all good no longer flows from the Fountain of all good, but out of Christ. This could make it appear as if we had replaced God with Christ, who now becomes the Fountain of all good. We may not entertain such a shocking idea for even one moment. The eternal and glorious God is and remains the Fountain of all good forever, for everyone and, thus, also for us.

But it means that the Lord Jesus has already received or collected the waters from this Fountain on our behalf, that He has already gathered them for us and that they are already intended for us. And thus, as truly as our soul is united to the Lord Jesus Christ, so we can be sure we will never lack an abundance of refreshing waters. Yes, out of God eternal, but through the Mediator.

Do you want the capacity to love? It is there waiting for you in Christ, flowing through Him to you out of the Fountain of all good. Do you want a tender conscience, a humble soul, self-denial on behalf of others? Seek all these things above, where Christ is, for in Him they are available there for you, not just as general gems, but as a customized treasure designed specially for you; not just any signet ring, but one that has been customized to fit the circumference of your finger with your name engraved!

A robe of righteousness, made to fit exactly for you!

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