Last night, at a Good Friday experience at my church I was powerfully reminded of Jesus' amazing sacrifice for my sins. As I reflect this season on Jesus dying in my place for my sin, I am awestruck once again that I can never repay the debt I owe Christ. From a debt that can never be repaid flows a life long discovery of gratitude. And that is our secret life in Christ.
The ancient Church Fathers didn’t use the word mysticism. However, the adjective, mystikos, on which the word mysticism is based, was used frequently. The noun mysterion means, most simply, “a secret” and so the adjective mystikos essentially means “simple or hidden.” The word carried the idea of the secret life available in Christ because the depth of the gospel has unending implications for our lives.
Mystikos was also used in intimate connection with the sacraments and the Eucharist and so it was a communal experience. It didn’t emphasize an ecstatic experience of rapture, and it wasn’t disconnected from doctrine. Instead, the mystikos life in Christ was precisely the working out of the gospel in the lived experience of Christians.
Jesus’ death that we remember on Good Friday, and his resurrection that we celebrate on Easter Sunday, have such profound implications for the rest of our lives, that we cannot possibly see them all now. They are a secret to us now. We will spend the rest of our lives discovering the gratitude we will experience for the greatest gift we could have never imagined—undeserved life with God. Your secret life in Christ awaits you. Let it start this moment with gratitude for the Gift that made it possible—that Jesus died the death we should have died, and rose again, conquering death itself.