For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory (Colossians 3:3-4 ESV)


Many days I long for an Instagram-worthy life.


Pictures of laughing children #happiness

Pictures of couples cuddled together for a selfie #romance

Pictures of sparkling sunlight and a scenic view #tranquility


But when life isn’t going the way I want it to go, what’s my hashtag?


I prefer what Barbara Brown Taylor calls full solar spirituality. This is when we focus on the sunny side of faith. The blessings, the answered prayers, the testimonies of thanksgiving. I’m usually a card-carrying member of the sunny side of faith.


When I signed up to write a blog post on these verses, I thought I was going to write all about new life. You know, the first green stems of the tulips poking through the cold dirt; the look on someone’s face as he emerges from the baptism waters, the feeling of holding a new baby.


But then life got really rough and I didn’t know how I could write about these moments of new life. Instead, I felt so much frustration with God. And I couldn’t find the words to write because the words filling my thoughts were, “God, this isn’t fair, this isn’t the life I want, why is this happening?”


So I kept reading the verses.


Ingrid, you have died to the cares of this world. Your real life is hidden with Me.


And slowly but surely I began to see different pictures of life, real life.


Of heavenly choruses singing songs of unending praise #abundantjoy

Of a risen Saviour waiting on a throne for me #unfailinglove

Of standing face to face with my Beloved, fully known #truepeace


When we turn our eyes upward, away from the entrapment of the #earthlylife Instagram-worthy moments, we see a glimpse of the glory that awaits. When our hearts begin to long only for what is hidden with Christ, we find a new hashtag for the times when this life isn’t going the way we want.




—Ingrid Hoogenboom

A reflection on Colossians 3:3-4

Alive! Series

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