The Baptized Dead
There is a preachers story that says there used to be a woman that lived with Saint Augustine. They eventually grew apart and during that time Augustine converted to Christianity. One day walking down the street the women cried out, "Augustine! Augustine!" but he kept walking. She yelled a few more times until she finally caught up with him and she said, "Augustine, it is I" and he replied, "I know, but it is no longer I"
The story may or may not be true, but it illustrates a point in a drastic way--we are dead to our old self.
If we took it to mean how life changing God meant it to be, it would resemble entering the witness protection program. New names, new way to live, changing friends. The old you dies. You had the funeral, you ate the h'orderves (which I definitely had to spell check three times), and you have said your condolences to those you once knew.
But I think a lot of us like to put on our old skin a little more than once and a while. We like to live in sin and come back to God asking for forgiveness. Then doing it all over again. It's like playing zombie. We are dead, but we try and act alive in dead skin. I'm not saying that Christians don't sin or that people don't have struggles they will always have.
I'm just saying that it should be different. Jesus isn't a self-help book with 10 easy steps to a better life. He is a brand new life altogether. I may just be preaching at myself, but I think that sometimes I let myself go further than I should because I know God is gracious. I put that old skin back on and it fits like a glove so I stay longer than I should, go further than I wanted, and end up paying more than I ever thought I could.
Something to think about this week: are we walking in our dead skin or are we unrecognizable because of how drastically Jesus is working in us?