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Daily Devotional • March 19

Steven McCain
Don't Forget to Remember
A Reading from Romans 8:11-25 

11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.

12 Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation — but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. 13 For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. 

14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.

22 We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption to sonship, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved.But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.

The brain’s ability to remember is remarkable. We can remember every word to our favorite song and random one-liners from TV shows. But if you are anything like me, we also forget the more useful pieces of information — where we put our phone, how many ounces are in a cup, or more importantly, who we are in Christ. These are the things we need to remember, and yet they are often the hardest to recall.

Lent is a season of reminders about the things we tend to forget. On Ash Wednesday, we hear the words, “you are dust and to dust you shall return” as we receive cruciform tokens of mortality on our forehead. It is a sobering experience to hear that we will die one day, but it invites us to remember, reflect, and examine our hearts. Similarly, St. Paul provides some necessary reminders in Romans about who we are in Christ.  

This text in Romans reminds us who we are and of the promise of new life through the Spirit. We are a people indwelt by the Spirit. Not just any spirit, but the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead. This is the Spirit who dwells within us. And as the Spirit dwells within us, Paul assures us that this Spirit is also bringing new life to our mortal bodies. Surely, if God can breathe life into dust, God can breathe life again into our mortal flesh and bones. 

As we continue to prepare our hearts for Holy Week, may we ponder the wonder of God’s Spirit of Resurrection filling every corner of our lives and remember that the dawn of new life is coming. 

Steven McCain is a seminarian living in Durham, North Carolina, with his wife, Elizabeth, and two sons, Benjamin and James. 

Daily Devotional Cycle of Prayer

Today we pray for:

The Anglican Church of Southern Africa
Cathedral Church of the Advent, Birmingham, Alabama
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