In the second century AD, the scientist/ astronomer Claudius Ptolemy presented a model of the solar system that stated that the Earth was the center of the universe. About 1,400 years later, another astronomer, Nicolaus Copernicus, overturned Ptolemy’s model and taught that Earth revolved around the sun and not the other way around.
Just as Copernicus upended Ptolemy’s teaching, Jesus upends our assumptions. Every day he asks us, “Who is the center of your life? Are you living under my rule or under yours?”
Using the Ptolemaic system as a model, we might say, “I choose to be the center of my universe.” Living under that model tends to make us self-centered, even if we appear to be good and upright. It can move us to ignore our weaknesses, take all the credit for our goodness, and never submit to Jesus’ rule.
Using the Copernican model, we might say, “Jesus is at the center of my universe.” We place him at the center when we realize that he became a man and died to rescue us from sin. We place him at the center when we realize that he has been raised up and is now Lord of heaven and earth (Philippians 2:6-11).
Of course, it’s humbling to say, “Jesus, I want you to be at the center of my life.” These words are opposed to our fallen nature. Yet the more we begin each day by praying these words, the more we will find ourselves filled with an incredible peace. We will also find a grace-filled determination to place our lives—every thought and every action—under Jesus’ rule so that we can give him glory.