If you were to listen to Oprah, Dr Phil or many of the other personal growth guru's, they would tell you that the answer to all you need for a life of contentment and satisfaction is in YOU. The emphasis being the YOU part. If YOU work harder, if YOU change your thinking, if YOU eat well, if YOU get enough sleep, if YOU exercise, if YOU treat others properly...then YOU will find satisfaction in this life.
The answer is in YOU. This is what they essentially are saying. But how does that actually work out? Not so good as experience has taught us.
Sure, for some it would appear to work. But if they were really honest, then they would tell you that they are still striving for something because no matter how much they have, it is never enough. We know this is true because this was Solomon's experience as documented in the book of Ecclesiastics. But we also see this in the drug and/or alcohol abuse and shattered lives of so many people who seem to have it all.
The problem is really not in the suggestions on how to live, for some of them are very wise. Instead, the problem with their counsel is that YOU cannot pull it off. YOU, in YOURSELF, simply do not have what it takes to live a content and full life in this world.
The good news is that we simply need to shift our emphasis and suddenly everything changes.
The answer is not in YOU, instead it is IN you. It's not about YOU, but the WHO that now lives IN you.
You were never meant to make it on your own. Instead, mankind was created to house the living God IN him. And when you first believed in Jesus Christ as our Saviour, HE came IN you to presently live HIS life IN you. The emphasis switched from YOU to HIM.
My friend Alvin shared this with me recently and I thought I would pass it on. It is from Charles Turnbull's book, "Victory in Christ." Look how he describes what it means to have Christ live IN you.
"I came to realize for the first time that the many references in the New Testament to "Christ in you" and "you in Christ" and "Christ our life" and "abiding in Christ" are not figures of speech but a literal, actual, blessed fact. Before that August morning in 1910, I'd always known Christ was my Saviour, but I had looked upon Him as an external Saviour, one who did a saving work for me, from the outside always ready to come alongside and help me by providing power strength, and salvation. But now I know something better: Jesus Christ was actually and literally within me. And even more than that, He Himself constituted my very life, taking me - body, mind, and spirit - into union with Himself, while I retained my own identity, free will, and full moral responsibility.
It meant I need never again to ask Him to help me as though He were apart from me. Instead I could ask Him simply to do His work and His will in me and with me and through me. My body was His, my mind His, my will His, my spirit His. And not merely His, but literally a part of Him. He was asking me to recognize this truth: "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me" (Gal 2.20). Jesus Christ Himself had become my life.
Imagine the tingling joy and exultation with which Paul must have written those words to the Philippians, "To me, to live is Christ." He didn't say, "To me, to live is to be Christ-like," or "To me, to live is to have Christ's help," or "To me, to live is to serve Christ." No, he leaped beyond that to the bold, glorious, mysterious claim, "To me, to live is Christ."
In Christ who is our Life,