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How a 20 year old piece of paper saved my life

I was always a ‘good’ boy!

Loved my mum and dad and always stuck by the rules – never really got into trouble (well maybe just a little) and nearly always did what I was told.

When my parents said to do something I would snap to and do it – from music practise to washing up  –  I was your boy.

School was always a drag but then I guess I didn’t have that on my own. All of my efforts were put into pleasing my parents and basking in the security that they offered.

I was very fortunate in having a Mum and Dad who loved Jesus and believed strongly in His leadership. As a family we were hauled off to church each week and I knew all the Bible stories and heaps of verses.

Mum prayed with us often and encouraged us to give our lives to Jesus and I guess at an early stage in my life I did just that. Not that it meant any sort of change in my life and in some ways I took Jesus and His amazing work totally for granted.

So here I was growing up on a type of merry-go-round of church, school and youth group and all the while never really thinking that Jesus’ message really meant me.

I was the ‘good’ boy, never really changing, life travelling along OK, meeting kids my own age and generally enjoying life as it was. Getting a job and meeting the girl of dreams just added to my idyllic lifestyle. Just another day in Paradise you could say.

I guess it may have been the Vietnam War and Australia’s decision to conscript 20 year old males into the army that I first had a real change in my life – During my 19th year I had heaps of time to think about what life would be like in the army or even warfare in Vietnam.

It was during this time I had my first real confrontation with God (if I could put it that way). I was concerned about being drafted into the army and I suppose during that time I tried praying – really praying for possibly the very first time in my life. Did it make a change in my life? I doubt it. But I was quietly pleased when the conscription ballot finally fell and I had missed out.

Did I think of God after that – unfortunately No. It wasn’t until we had a couple of children and we were attending an old historic church, cold, drafty and full of ‘old’ people that God worked an amazing miracle in my life.

I was on a roster of welcoming people to church and this particular rota fell on a night service. Grumbling about driving into town on a cold winters night, I felt a fraction better leaving the family at home all warm and cosy. I remember thinking that no-one will be in church on such a cold, wet and windy night – I should stay at home.

And cold, wet and windy it was – the church was pretty much vacant – You could hear the wind whistling through the big old doors as I walked up the steps to do my duty.

As I walked in the wind picked up and blew a piece of old yellowing paper onto the floor at my feet. I picked it up and not thinking anything about it got onto welcoming the very few church members.

As I stood there and the service started – I glanced down at the paper – it was an old Christian tract written 20 years before. As I turned it over in my hand these words leaped out at me – “I will never leave you or forsake you”.

That’s all….That amazing verse in Hebrews had the most awesome effect on me. GOD MEANS ME!!! ME – HE MEANS ME! HE REALLY REALLY MEANS ME.

I couldn’t believe it – The God I had ‘talked’ to for years was actually talking back to me – He was never going to leave me.

Right there and then I asked Him into life – As I stood in that old windy porch clutching onto an old yellow piece of torn paper. GOD MEANS ME!

My life has changed so much since then  – God has seen me though some horrible and nasty times – times when I doubt I would have made it except for his great love and patience.

I still sin, I always will until I finally get to glory and I have a new mind and body – but Jesus died to renew by relationship with Him not to condemn me for the past and future sins.

Have you been convicted of your need to have Jesus take control of your life?

We all have our different stories of how we feel about Jesus or what we have done with Him. We all need to make a decision one way or another – either accept Jesus as Lord or reject Him … but hey He will never turn you away.

All you need to do is to pray a prayer just like this:-

Dear God,
 
I know I have sinned against you and I have fallen short of your standards.
Thank you for not leaving me in this state and I believe that You sent Jesus to 
die as a payment for my sins.
Please forgive me for all of the sins I have done.
I want to live for you and not for myself – please come and take 100% control of my life. Amen.
 

If you prayed that prayer, please contact us or another Christian person so that we can pray and encourage you in your Christian walk.


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Dealing with Severe Emotional Pain: The Roadmap to Healing

God's Healing Hand On You

Copyright© πίστις 2014

If you have ever been through a serious trial in your life or experienced a deeply painful loss then you can understand how difficult it can be to heal from these experiences.

Depending on what happened and how long it lasted…these things can be very destructive and damaging to you and your walk with Christ. Some examples would be: a serious illness, the loss of a loved one especially a spouse, parent, or child, a divorce or the end of a serious relationship/friendship, a job/career loss, or loss of your home to name a few.

Do these questions sound familiar to you?

Why?
Why me?
What did I do to deserve this?
Where are You in all of this God?

While we all want to know why (well I did!) something happened, why is not always the best question, in fact it is for sure not the best one. Instead of wasting time asking why, instead ask, “how can I fix this?” and “what do You want me to learn from this Lord?”

Everyone needs time to experience grief and to work through it, attempting to sweep it under the rug will not help anything and in fact will make it harder to deal with. Rest assured you will at some point be faced with the need to deal with your pain/loss…better to do so now.

There are two ways you can choose to deal with your pain.

The hard way, and the much harder way, both sound appealing right?

The first way…the hard way is God’s way. This is the preferred method of course. As the title implies, it is not easy. You need to ask God some hard questions and then listen carefully to the answers and be willing to act on them.

 

  1. What am I supposed to learn from this?
  2. What changes do You desire me to make in my life?
  3. What actions am I supposed to take?
  4. (Later on) How can I help someone else through this?

 

The second way…the much harder way is the choice of many unfortunately. This involves running away from God and refusing to submit to Him. It is common to fall into “why me” and depression accompanied by anger and bitterness often directed at God. This can stretch into months if not years…I hope and pray you will not take this way. If you have, then I pray you will submit yourself to God and stop running from Him and trying to avoid what you know you will have to deal with sooner or later anyway. If you choose not to deal with your emotional pain it will catch up to you it is only a matter of when. Serious emotional pain not dealt with can and often does destroy your life.

If you are dealing with someone who has been grievously wounded, you will need patience and lots of it. Try to remember that this person is dealing with severe emotional pain. I cannot for certain tell you what do to other than to pray. Pray for this person, and let him/her know that he/she is loved and cared for.

If you hear “you don’t understand”, well remember that in a way you don’t because you are not that person. Keep in mind as well that someone who is suffering through deep emotional upheaval is likely not thinking clearly and may not be capable of seeing anything but their own pain. Resist the temptation to fire back in anger, you might well get angry because you feel frustrated at being helpless. This will only make things worse. Try to be there for this person and again keep them in prayer.

Whether it is you or you are trying to help someone you care about, go to God with it. Ask Him for His help…God wants you to do this! Try to cultivate a positive attitude as much as possible. Negativity will drag you down in a quick hurry and escaping this mind-set can be a daunting challenge.

Keep yourself busy…too much idle time and isolation is counter-productive. If your hands and mind are busy doing something, the problem does not resound nearly so loud in your mind. Use prayer and worship to help yourself, not only are you told to do so by the Bible, but these two things are effective at fighting negative emotions.

Thankfulness…cultivate an attitude of thankfulness! Many people stumble here…while praying start by thanking God first. You ate today didn’t you? You ARE breathing right? You have a home? The point is there is always something to be thankful for. Just because God is God…does not mean He does not like to be thanked!

Be creative! Of course you may have days when creativity is next to impossible but what about other days? When you are being creative in some way it stimulates good things in your brain…use that!

Help someone else, if you are engaged in helping someone else your pain does not seem so bad. Please don’t use the excuse that you are not fit to help anyone…baloney. Send someone a card, write them an email, do something for someone that needs doing, be encouraging to someone, take the time to pray for some people on a regular basis…make it your mission to do so. Not only are you obeying God’s word, you are blessing yourself in the process!

Prayer…I know I mentioned this before but I cannot emphasize this enough! Pray often and do so out loud. Your spoken words to God have power and it helps keep you on track (and awake) while praying. Prayer is not only about asking God for things, if such is the case for you, well let’s add some things to that.

 

  1. Be thankful…being thankful is a great way to start a prayer.
  2. Be sure to pray in God’s will, not yours. This does not mean to only pray for things that you are sure are in line with God’s will, but also to state to God that above all…Thy will be done, not mine.
  3. Do more than ask for things even for others. As you listen to praise music for instance…just tell the Lord you love Him!
  4. When asking the Lord for things, actions etc. more of your time should be spent praying on behalf of others verses praying for yourself.
  5. Instead of asking God to change someone else, ask Him to change you to meet the need whatever it is.
  6. Praying with your spouse, your friends, etc. is good, but be sure to spend time alone praying. Even Jesus Christ Himself did this.
  7. Be honest in your feelings with God, don’t play cat and mouse with the Lord…He already knows your every thought good or bad so stop trying to hide them from Him.
  8. If you are confused or just not sure about something you are praying about…tell Him! God is never put off at honest questions, it shows you care and desire to remain in His will for you.
  9. Pray daily…a day should not EVER go by that you do not pray.
  10. Just pray!! There have been books galore written on the subject and I’m not saying they are bad or wrong. I am saying you just  need to pray. God looks at your heart not just your words so do not worry that you need to get the words just right. God is not impressed by rote prayer, pray from your heart.

 

If you are the one hurting, if possible find someone you trust and talk to them. It is not that another person can heal your pain…no one can do that for you. Only you and God can accomplish that. You can however find comfort in that person to help you through this trying time in your life. Isolation will only serve to make things worse for you.

If you are the one approached for help in any way…please take it very serious. Above all, pray for the person that came to you, second listen. Listening is often more appreciated than advice and a good listener can do much just by listening! Do not force anything, you will cause more harm than good. If there needs to be some force applied to the situation, let God handle that. If things are serious enough to warrant intervention…get Godly professional help and do not attempt that on your own.

Remember, you are there to help that person any way you can…you cannot fix it so please do not try. Let God do the fixing and support them however you can.

Last…love, love, love, love them!


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ONE TRUE AND LIVING GOD

By Neil Anderson

 banner_secondary_who i am in christ

December 30
 
Exodus 20:2, 3 
I am the LORD your God. . . . You shall have no other gods before Me
 
The doctrinal affirmations today and tomorrow will help you renew your mind and take your stand on the truth. I recommend that you read these Scriptural affirmations aloud at least once a week in the coming year.
 
I recognize that there is only one true and living God (Exodus 20:2, 3), who exists as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and that He is worthy of all honor, praise and worship as the Creator, Sustainer, Beginning and End of all things (Revelation 4:11; 5:9, 10; Isaiah 43:1, 7, 21).
 
I recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us (John 1:1, 14). I believe that He came to destroy the works of Satan (1 John 3:8), that He disarmed the rulers and authorities, having triumphed over them (Colossians 2:15).
 
I believe that God has proven His love for me, because when I was still a sinner, Christ died for me (Romans 5:8). I believe that He delivered me from the domain of darkness and transferred me to His kingdom, and in Him I have redemption, the forgiveness of sins (Colossians 1:13, 14).
 
I believe that I am now a child of God (1 John 3:1-3). I believe that I was saved by the grace of God through faith, that it was a gift and not the result of any works on my part (Ephesians 2:8).
 
I choose to be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might (Ephesians 6:10). I put no confidence in the flesh (Philippians 3:3), for the weapons of my warfare are not of the flesh (2 Corinthians 10:4). I put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-17), and I resolve to stand firm in my faith and resist the evil one.
 
Prayer: Lord, inscribe on my heart the truth of who You are and what You have done to secure my eternal salvation.


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OUR RESPONSIBILITIES

By Neil Anderson

December 28
banner_secondary_who i am in christ
Philippians 2:3 
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself.
Once when I was pastoring I got a distress call: “Pastor, you better get over here or we’re liable to kill each other.” When I arrived at the house I persuaded them to sit down across the table from each other to talk through their problem. They whaled away at each other for several minutes, slamming each other with accusations and insults.
Finally I interrupted. “Time out! Each of you get your Bible.” I asked the husband to read Romans 14:4: “Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and stand he will, for the Lord is able to make him stand.” “That verse is talking about judging another person’s character,” I said. “Before God, each of you is responsible for your own character.” They nodded their agreement.
Then I asked the wife to read Philippians 2:3: “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself.” “That verse is talking about needs,” I continued. “Before God, each of you is responsible for meeting each other’s needs.” Again the couple agreed with my statement.
“Do you realize what you have been doing the last two hours? Instead of assuming responsibility for your own character, you’ve been ripping apart your partner’s character. Instead of looking out for your partner’s needs, you’ve been selfishly absorbed with your own needs. No wonder your marriage isn’t functioning” Before I left that day, they prayerfully committed to refocus their responsibilities according to the Word of God.
What kind of families and churches would we have if we all assumed responsibility for our own character and sought to meet the needs of those we live with?
Prayer: Lord, I want to be able to say with Paul, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith.”


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What is the Purpose of Christmas?

This is a video journal I did for Christmas! 

Merry Christmas! 

-Austin

 

 


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NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE WITH GOD

By Neil Anderson

 banner_secondary_who i am in christ

December 25
 
Luke 1:38 
Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word
 
If God wants something done, can it be done? In other words, if God has a goal for your life, can it be blocked, or is its fulfillment uncertain or impossible?
 
I am personally convinced that no goal God has for my life is impossible or uncertain, nor can it be blocked. Imagine God saying, “I’ve called you into existence, I’ve made you My child, and I have something for you to do. I know you won’t be able to do it, but give it your best shot.” That’s ludicrous! It’s like saying to your child, “I want to you to mow the lawn. Unfortunately, the lawn is full of rocks, the mower doesn’t work, and there’s no gas. But give it your best shot.” Even secular scholars say that issuing a command that cannot be obeyed will undermine authority.
 
God had a staggering goal for a little maiden named Mary. An angel told her that she would bear a son while still a virgin, and that her son would be the Savior of the world. When she inquired about this seemingly impossible feat, the angel simply said, “Nothing will be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).
 
You wouldn’t give your child a task he couldn’t complete, and God doesn’t assign to you goals you can’t achieve. His goals for you are possible, certain and achievable. When God’s will for us appears impossible, let’s say with Mary: “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; be it done to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38).
 
Imagine the overwhelming assignment that confronted Mary. She was to have a baby without being with a man. She was to raise the child who would save the world. The entire course of history would be altered, and the eternal destiny of believers would be changed. The fact that you are celebrating Christmas today is proof that Mary’s child Jesus was indeed the world-changing Son of God.
 
Despite the staggering nature of the task announced by the angel, Mary gave herself to accomplish God’s will. God is still looking for a few bondslaves who will dare to believe that nothing is impossible with God.
 
Prayer: Lord, I yield to You as Your bondslave. I choose to believe that whatever You want me to do I can do.


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Thought for Today from God’s Word

Isaiah 53 (NKJ)

1 Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? 2 For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, And as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, There is no beauty that we should desire Him. 3 He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. 4 Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. 5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. 7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He opened not His mouth; He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So He opened not His mouth. 8 He was taken from prison and from judgment, And who will declare His generation? For He was cut off from the land of the living; For the transgressions of My people He was stricken. 9 And they made His grave with the wicked– But with the rich at His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was any deceit in His mouth. 10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief. When You make His soul an offering for sin, He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days, And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand. 11 He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, For He shall bear their iniquities. 12 Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great, And He shall divide the spoil with the strong, Because He poured out His soul unto death, And He was numbered with the transgressors, And He bore the sin of many, And made intercession for the transgressors.


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Christians: the Most Judgmental and Critical People There Are

Judgement?

 Copyright© 2013 πίστις

Other Believers are the most judgmental and critical people I know. Offended yet? Then do not read any further.

I will say that being so quick to judge does not apply to all Believers, some are not this way. Yet many of us are unfortunately very quick to judge and in an unbiblical way. Many are as well quick to jump on the actions of others and be critical of them.

Read this excerpt from an article I found, it’s an eye opener:

This past Thursday evening, I was reading a discipleship book to my children. At the end of each chapter there are discussion questions. One question was: “What negative characteristic turns people off about Christians?” As I posed this question to my children my boys responded by saying, “When Christians judge other people.” WOW! Honestly, I was taken aback by this response because my boys are eleven and nine. I wondered, “How could they know this so early in their Christian maturity?” I concluded that it is an intuitive. Even young Christians can sniff out inappropriate judgment.

It goes without saying that unbelievers pounce all over Christian hypocrisy and judgment. A Hindu professor once found out that a man in his class was a Christian. The professor said to this student, “If you Christians were like Jesus Christ, India would be at your feet tomorrow.” A learned Muslim who recently became a Christian said, “If Christians were truly Christians—like Christ—there would be no Islam.”1 A USA Today poll shows 72% of unchurched Americans agree that a God exists, but the same percentage says, “the church is full of hypocrites.” 44% say Christians get on their nerves.2 People flat-out don’t like Christians. Yet, when is the last time you heard someone say, “Man, Jews, Muslims, or Buddhists get on my nerves!” It doesn’t happen, does it? People show respect and honor to these religions. Now it’s easy to object, “This just isn’t fair. The media has turned Christians into cultural punching bags.” Yet, we must ask, “Have we brought some of this pain upon ourselves?” If we’re honest and humble, we would probably have to say, “Yes, guilty as charged.”   Read the full article here: Lord, Save Me From Your Followers!

Have you ever been on the receiving end of this type of judgment or criticism? It hurts…and makes one think twice about trusting others. The one place, the body of Christ where this should not be…it is rampant. It is also readily apparent to the outside world that “Christians” tend to shoot their own wounded…this is disgraceful.

I find it ironic that many people in the secular world despite not knowing Jesus have a better attitude and are more willing to display understanding and forgiveness than many of my own brothers and sisters in the Lord. Far too many Believers seem to look on forgiveness as condoning another’s actions; this could not be further from the truth. Forgiveness means to forgive, it does not mean that you condone the actions of another.

Evangelism is very important, one of the most important things in the Church today after worship and glorification of the Lord.

Yet I see an even more urgent need in today’s Church; Believers need to stop being so judgmental of one another and be much quicker to forgive and to understand…not to mention help one another. There is this misguided notion in today’s Church of guilt by association. Rather than help a fellow brother or sister, many will walk away so as not to look guilty themselves. This is of course ridiculous…whom did Jesus spend so much time with? Who was it that rejected Christ Himself and was lovingly restored?

This may upset some; today’s Church is beset by legalism. Rules and the observation of them are more important that people are. Again…I’m NOT saying all are this way, but many are. This is not to say that we in the Church should condone the sins of others, but at the same time what value is there in turning our collective back on someone caught in a sin? Who among us has not sinned?

This is a Church-wide problem and one that is steadfastly denied by many. Not many will stand up and say anything about it; instead it is swept under the rug and ignored. The average (I mean no insult here) Joe will simply leave the Church and not come back. That of course is just another mark against that person.

I mentioned previously the importance of evangelism, while this is an important need and commanded by the Lord Himself…of even more importance is the how the outside world views the Church. How can I say this you might be thinking; if the secular world views Believers (the Church) as a bunch of back-biting, judgmental, “throw their own to the wolves” kind of people…then when we try to evangelize them why on earth would they want to join us? Would you want to?

Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that you be not judged This is one of the most misunderstood verses in the Bible by both the secular world and Believers as well. It does not mean to never judge, we are told by Christ Himself to make judgments. The problem is not in Believers making a judgment it is how that judgment is made.

John 7:24 Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment

John 8:7 So when they continued asking Him, He raised Himself up and said to them “He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.”

Many Believers when making judgments fall into error as in John 8:7…instead of judging the actions of another brother or sister, they judge that person’s actions and they judge the person as well. This is throwing stones…we are to judge a brother or sisters actions, we are not to judge the person.  Judging the action only is a righteous judgment. The other part of a righteous judgment is judging by God’s standards, not our own. This refers back to Matthew 7:1-2, in the same way you judge others, so shall you be judged by Christ Himself…scary thought is it not? Be careful how you judge.

1 Samuel 16:7 …For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.

No Believer should judge another person…we do not know the heart of that individual and why they did what they did. Only the Lord knows that. People do tend to look at the outward appearance or the action itself. Do you know what that person has been through? The pain they have suffered? The trials they have gone through? You may think you do…you do not.

How about the cross-dresser, the homeless man, or the one who reeks of alcohol? Many would like to escort these people to the door. Are they not supposed to be treated with respect and shown the love of Christ? How are they to possibly come to know the Lord if they are shunned because they are not in their Sunday best? We maybe will speak to these people on the street, but please do not show up in our churches because you are not welcome. Really? Is this loving your neighbor as yourself?

How many Believers do you suppose come to church in their Sunday best; both in clothing and attitude…afraid to ever confide in anyone the truth of what is in their lives for fear of being ostracized from the very people that should help them? It is not only the secular world that sees what goes on in the Church…many IN the church see it as well.

In this time of the Church being fractured in so many ways; gay pastors, the teaching of Chrislam, accepting many other religions views of reaching heaven apart from Christ as legitimate, “tickle my ears” teaching…unity in the body of Christ should be of utmost importance.

Love your neighbor as yourself, mercy trumps judgment.

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Responsibilities Over Rights

By Neil Anderson

 banner_secondary_who i am in christ

November 30
 
Galatians 5:13 
You were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another
 
Nothing will distort relationships faster than emphasizing our rights over our responsibilities. For example, a husband may chip at his wife because he feels he has a right to expect her to be submissive. A wife may nag her husband because she expects him to be the spiritual leader. Parents harass their children because they feel it’s their right to demand obedience. Members are offended in the local church when they think their rights have been violated by pastors, boards or other members.
 
Any time people insist on their rights at the expense of failing to assume their responsibilities, they are going down to defeat. For example, a pregnant woman may demand her right for an abortion. She says it is her body and she can do whatever she wants with it. Then she proceeds to demonstrate her irresponsible use of her body to everyone! We don’t have an abortion problem; we have an irresponsible sex problem.
 
In God’s system, our focus is to be fulfilling our responsibilities, not insisting on our rights. Husband, having a submissive wife is not your right; but being a loving, caring husband is your responsibility. Headship is not a right to be demanded but an awesome responsiblity to be fulfilled.
 
Similarly, wives, having a spiritual husband is not your right; but being a submissive, supportive wife is your responsibility. Parents, raising obedient children is not your right; but disciplining your children in the nurture and instruction of the Lord is your responsibility. Being a member of the Body of Christ and of a local church is an incredible privilege, not a right. This privilege comes with the awesome responsibility to behave as God’s children and become a lover of people. When we stand before Christ, He will not ask us if we received everything we had coming to us. But He will reward us for how well we fulfilled our responsiblities.
 
Prayer: Lord, help me relinquish my rights and focus on my responsibilities in all my relationships today.


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Christ the Lowly, Part II

Jesus art 3

LOWLY: 1. humble in feeling, behavior or status 2. modest; unpretentious 3. evolved to only a slight degree

“…thus says the Lord God, ‘Remove the turban and take off the crown; this will no longer be the same. Exalt that which is low and abase that which is high (Ezekiel 21:26, NAS).”

 “Take My yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls (Matthew 11:29, KJV).”

 “I dwell on a high and holy place, and also with the contrite and lowly of spirit… (Isaiah 57:15, NAS).”

 “For though the Lord is exalted, yet He regards the lowly, but the haughty He knows from afar (Psalm 138:6, NAS).”

We must each look at ourselves with new vision – Kingdom Vision – with the ability to see things supernaturally as does God because our fleshly (human) vision limits us greatly hence impairing true clarity about any given situation.

 It is imperative that we acknowledge the magnitude of the filth of our personal sin nature; how unholy, ungodly and unclean we are before we received the grace of God. You personally, just as I, offended our Sovereign Lord prior to humbling ourselves before Him. God says that each of us were His enemy when He died and rose again; when Jesus allowed pain, sorrow, and death to come upon Himself. Jesus had to face being forsaken by His Father, and He did all this for you and me before we were thought of or had ever committed our first sin. He died for us knowing we would rebel against Him, but He did it anyway because of His unfailing, unwavering love.

 Bear in mind that He died and arose for our overall sin nature that was birthed through Adam, not just individual sins. If we view things from the standpoint of “my sins aren’t as heinous as so-an-so” we could justify the idea of “so-an-so needs Christ’s grace and forgiveness far more than I. I’m okay compared to that scoundrel!” Understanding the fact that He died for the nature of sin in us ceases the “who is better than whom” game. Outside of Christ, we are all sin-sick and destined for hell therefore the playing field is level for all, all needing grace, all needing forgiveness.  

 With what Christ did on the cross, the entire world for every generation is now completely forgiven! In fact, if we are going to be sticklers about it, one should never pray, “O God forgive me of this or that.” We are already fully forgiven. What should be prayed is something like, “O gracious God, I repent of _______ and I position myself to fully receive and apply to my life the forgiveness You gave to me at the cross of Calvary.”

 The forgiveness is not presently given at your confession; it was previously given a long time ago. The repentance of sin for a believer is simply an act of humility (lowliness; acknowledging our error and need of grace) on our part that ushers back into our lives the open door to God. In this, you will begin to realize that it is actually blasphemy against His death, burial and resurrection to perpetually beat yourself for your past as though your sins are too terrible for His provision of forgiveness to be sufficient. As hard of a concept as it may be, God has made it simple – readily accessible.

 Forgiveness of self comes only through recognizing one, the magnitude of the sin nature that needs forgiveness in order to stand before and become united with our Holy God as one, and two, recognizing the boundless love the Father has bestowed such a wretched, loveless, sinful people (you and me). We must see God’s truths as facts as He intends instead of insults as Satan intends. Seeing truths as facts allows us to remain unemotional and clear minded concerning them, but seeing them as insults keeps us bound in emotionalism which leads to “I’m not worthy therefore I am too tainted to come to Christ.”

 We must see everything from the heavenly perspective and not the earthly lest Satan come in and pervert truth through human pride and selfish thinking. Satan wants you condemned, full of shame, and walling in self-pity. God wants you delivered, redeemed, and set free from all that waylays you. Humility as Christ Himself was humble will usher to you into the lap of holiness, purity, Christ-mindedness, and true fulfillment of peace and joy.

 

Hope you’ll come back next week for the continuation of this study!

 

Peace and blessings,

 

Alexys V. Wolf

www.thefierysword.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Fiery-Sword-Global-Ministries/185299884822251

http://thefierysword.wordpress.com/