Often in many Christian circles many things other than Jesus Christ himself become the focus of life, community, and even teaching. Personal interests, buildings, programs, evangelism, spiritual gifts, self help, and many other areas have become the center of many lives and churches. While many of these things may be good, they are simply things, and to make anything other than Christ himself central is in complete defiance of what scripture teaches.
The church is the body of Christ, the expression of Jesus on this earth. Often times we pray and ask God for virtues such as patience and humility because we want to represent God better, but we forget that Christ is in us and we must do nothing but abide in him and he will abide in us (john 15:4). In his letter to the Romans, Paul speaks of us having been crucified with Christ and buried with Him through baptism (romans 6). He tells that we are dead and Christ is living through us, and if Christ is in us and He lacks nothing, then that means we too lack nothing.
Paul also speaks of Christ being preeminent in the first part of his letter to the Colossians. In 1:15 he beings to talk about Christ being the image of the invisible God and later states that all things were created through Him and for Him. Paul also states that Christ is before all things and all things hold together in Him. He is the firstborn from the dead and in Him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.
If Christ is all things, why do we not make Him the center of all things? This problem is the main reason why sects and denominations exist, this is why Christians seperate and divide themselves. Christ must be central in our lives personally and corporately.
All things are in Christ and available to us at any moment we have need. At the very moment we need patience Christ is our patience, no matter how impatient we think we are. We need no longer ask God for these virtues, we simply allow the Holy Spirit to teach us how to abide in Christ and allow Him to be all things to us as He intended to be, it’s a truth we must simply walk in. In John 15:39 Jesus says “you search the scriptures because you believe that in them you have eternal life, but they all point to me.” This confirms what Paul wrote to the Colossians that Christ is in all and all things were created through Him and for Him. All things are in Christ and we must rest in the facts that we are dead and Christ is alive through us, and that Christ is all we need, all things we need are found in Him. May the Lord strip us of our self help western Christianity and institutional thinking and let us make Jesus Christ the center and source of all Christian life instead of man made philosophies and programs. He must be the center and the reason for all Christian life, community, teaching, and meeting.