ἐπιστολή = Letter = New Life?
epistolē = a letter, an epistle
You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
2 Corinthians 3:2-3
Am I a letter from Christ? Am I written by the Holy Spirit of the living God on the very tablet of my heart? Am I? Does the world know this? How does the world see me?
To answer these questions, I must begin with the very fact that I desire to be a letter from Christ written to this world in which He has placed me. That desire is a first step. He calls me His. He teaches me His ways. He surrounds me with Himself. He molds me to be more like Him as I step closer to Him. My desire is our beginning. He and I are together. I want to be with Him. He wants this too.
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.
Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
Cleanse, purify, single-mindedness, obedience, holy unto Him…as I draw near, I am also called to be clean, to be holy as He is holy. To walk in holiness is to set my mind and hope upon Jesus, being obedient and grace-filled. My conduct is to be as He is and to deny the ways of this world.
Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:13-16
He called me. I am His. The Holy Spirit has written on my heart this letter of recommendation to this world. This is written with the Spirit of the living God…the Spirit of the living God. Does that sink in? This is not done by ink or pencil that can smear or rub off. This letter is by THE Creator of my very life. He wants this letter etched into my heart forever. He wants me forever. And He wants me to be His reflection, His image, forever. The world sees me and I want to look like Him to them. I do not want them to see Linda, but to see Jesus.
Make me holy, Lord Jesus. Make me holy.
Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.
2 Corinthians 3:4
Yes, I have confidence, but only through Christ. In myself, I doubt, I fear, I wonder. Jesus is my strength and my all. I have hope in the One Who saved me. I have hope that His letter on my heart is His letter to the people I touch. The Spirit gives this life.
Holy Spirit, pray for me to God that I would walk rightly and reflect beautifully the Image of Christ. You know the yearnings I hold. You pray with groanings to God that interpret my heart’s prayers where this precious tablet is.
Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God, who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.
2 Corinthians 3:5-6
My meekness and shy ways, my fears and doubt in myself, often deflect the Image of Christ, yet He gives me boldness. He builds me anew. I am able to be who He has called me to be, as I relinquish this life to Him, to follow Him, the One Who calls me.
Since we have such a hope, we are very bold….
2 Corinthians 3:12
His hand has written this letter of recommendation upon my heart tablet. His hand has engraved His love upon my heart. His hand has molded me and formed me to be holy as He is holy. His hand writes glory and I pray I glorify my Lord in all I am and in all I do. This is new life, always and forever.
But when one turns to the Lord, the veil is removed.
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is,
there is freedom.
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image
from one degree of glory to another.
For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:16-18
I am a new creation through You, Lord.
I have received a handwritten letter on my heart from You.
My desire to be holy as You are holy is so strong.
My desire to be Your letter touches me so deeply.
Help me, Lord.
You recommend me to this world in which I am a part.
Give me a boldness to speak.
Give me a boldness to be.
Give me Your grace to continue in all circumstances
that I would always be Your messenger of light.
I pray I glorify You and be a reflection.
May You be thankful that You
have written this letter of recommendation upon my heart tablet,
that I am new life in and through You, only in and through You.
I pray all in the Name of Jesus. Amen.