There is No Condemnation

Satan loves to use condemnation to defeat God’s Saints. His condemnation causes us to sink into the quicksand of shame with no visible way out. We see our faults and are burdened by our failings. Satan plants lies in our soul during each perceived failing; and we readily believe them, because of our feelings of hopelessness.

God, on the other hand, does not condemn us, He convicts us. Conviction reveals our guilt with a desire for repentance. Repentance means to turn away from sin and move toward holiness. Even if we never commit some gross sin of immorality or murder, we are still sinners (Romans 3:23). No amount of good works or self-effort can free us from the penalty of our sins.

Trusting in Jesus is our only means of salvation (John 14:6). His Holy Spirit breathes God’s breath of life into us and our spirit is no longer dead in sin. We completely surrendered our goals, dreams and aspiration in life to God’s will for us (Ephesians 2:10). We serve God with authentic devotion each moment of the day. We no longer desire a life of worldly pursuits and willful sin.

God’s Spirit converts our sinful nature to the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). We realize that God’s presence is within us and the Holy Spirit is sanctifying us. We are truly saved from hell and going to heaven (2 Corinthians 13:5-6; Lamentations 3:40-42). God removes our condemnation by washing us as clean as snow, and giving us a new heart and spirit within us (Ezekiel 36:25-27).

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for washing us clean, and giving us righteous desires and Your Spirit to direct us (Colossians 2:13-15). Thank You also that Jesus nailed our sins to the cross and blotted out the charges proved against us. Remind us not to live for You in our human effort. Help us to allow Christ to richly dwell in us as Your Body, so that whatever we do in word or deeds, it is all done for Your glory and honor (Colossians 3:16-18).

Thought for the Day:
God took away Satan’s power over our life and openly displayed to the whole world the triumph of Christ over Him; so that there is no longer any condemnation for those who love God and who are called to serve Him in His purpose for our life. – Romans 8:1; Colossians 2:15

Trusting in the Almighty

The Lord preserves our life and inspires our devotion to Him (Psalm 97:10). He is our God and saves everyone who trusts in Him (Psalm 86:2). Our eyes are on the Lord, and we take refuge in Him. He will never leave our soul – our mind, will and emotions – destitute (Psalm 141:8). He is our constant help in times of trouble (Psalm 46:1).

Even if the earth erupts in multiple tornadoes, tsunamis, earthquakes and volcanoes, which level the mountains, surge the roaring waves from the sea and level the earth with quakes, we have no need to be afraid (Psalm 46:2-3). We simply cry out to Him, who is our provision for as long as we live on this earth (Psalm 142:5).

God listens to our prayers and pays attention to our requests. He faithfully answers us with His righteous choices (Psalm 143:1). He allows those who trust in Him to experience His unfailing love with each new morning. As we lift up our thoughts, choices and feelings to Him, He reveals His direction for our day (Psalm 143:8).

God’s hand deals out blessings and trials as we need them for our perfection. He allows defeat to mold us into His divine nature. He uses adversity to prove His faithfulness and to increase our faith in Him. Our weakness proves our need for His strength. Our independence melts in the furnace of affliction and we depend on Him more each day.

Prayer:
Father God, help us to listen to Your Spirit so that we may decrease as You increase in our life (John 3:30). Give us a hunger for Your life-giving Word of Truth, which nourishes and satisfies the longing of our soul (Psalm 107:9). Replace our hardened heart with one of flesh that is pliable under the nurturing of Your Holy Spirit (Ezekiel 11:19).

Thought for the Day:
We will not harden our heart to the Truth of God’s Word, but respond to every phrase, and trust in the Almighty as we follow the direction of His voice. – John 10:27; Hebrews 3:15

In Due Season

There is a common plight among preachers today, as well as with those who profess Christ, but did not sincerely repent. They fall away from the calling, which God has on their life (Ephesians 2:10). Even authentic Christians grow weary in the ministry, especially in these last days of apostasy, with hearts that turn cold towards the Gospel.

We can draw courage, however, from the fact that if we do not faint, we will reap God’s reward (Galatians 6:9). Sharing the gospel of Christ with an unbeliever, and watching the light dawn in their face, is the most fulfilling experience this side of heaven. God’s truth transforms them as we witness a real change in their life.

This happens so infrequently, however, that over time we tend to get discouraged and frustrated. We take our eyes off Jesus and look instead at the lack of our results as we minister for the Lord. Noah preached for 120 years and only his wife, sons and daughters-in-law believed his message. The entire known world at that time scoffed at his faith and message. Yet, he did not give up.

God gives the Harvest of souls in His perfect timing. There is no need for us to struggle or strain, because the battle is the Lord’s (2 Chronicles 20:15). He is the Lord of the Harvest (Matthew 9:38). We plow, we sow and we trust that the seeds, which we broadcast, will eventually bear fruit. Through faithful service, we will reap in due season, if we do not give up.

Prayer:
Father God, when we arrive in Heaven, a host of Believers will welcome us, some of whom we never met before that day. They are there with us because of something You used us to say or do, which changed their life or the life of someone they know. I look forward to standing in Your presence and seeing the full impact of my service to You. Therefore, use me now to share a smile, a hug, an understanding word, a listening ear and the word of my testimony in Your precious name.

Thought for the Day:
We may win one person to Christ, who will eventually win a multitude, just because we took a moment to share a testimony of what God did in our life.

No Reputation

People often filter what we say through the lenses of their own experiences and come to a faulty conclusion. This gives us two options: to try to correct their perception or to ignore their remarks. I usually endeavor to clarify what I said, but if they still misunderstand, then I just change the subject. I learned to do this because of Jesus’ example. He did not attempt to maintain His reputation.

When He was reviled and misunderstood, He did not berate in return (1 Peter 2:23-24). His life was the epitome of kindness, compassion, forgiveness and acceptance, and ours can be too (Ephesians 4:32). Whether the offense is a major event, such as physical abuse, or if it consists of habitual, smaller impositions such as lies and betrayal, we can still forgive the offenders (Matthew 5:44).

When we consider the life of Christ and what He endured on this earth, it helps us not to grow weary of the way we are overlooked, discounted, abused, ridiculed and exploited (Hebrews 12:3). When we bless those who curse us and pray for those who hurt or use us (Luke 6:28), God continually blesses us and gives us so many reasons to rejoice (Psalm 109:28).

We do not act as a doormat, but we do turn the other cheek. We do not submit to abuse, but we do forgive the abuser. We can care for and nurture our needs and still love others through the love of God in us. It is only by sincerely wishing others the best, that our healing is complete. The only person in our life, which we need to impress, is God; and He loves us enough to die for us.

Prayer:
Father God, make us vessels of Your peace; when we are condemned, help us to bless; when we are wounded, help us to share Your healing love with the offender. Remind us that You did not defend your reputation and there is no reason for us to do so either. Your opinion of us is the only one that really matters. Keep us focused on eternity and help us to realize that this world will soon end.

Thought for the Day
If we do not repay evil or insult in kind, but give love in return, we will inherit God’s blessings. – 1 Peter 3:9

Receiving God’s Love

I grew up and then married into homes with conditional love. As a child, I wished on the first star every night that I would be good, so my parents would love me. As a young bride, I tried to do everything my husband wanted, so I would earn his appreciation and love. As a baby Christian, I made continual lists of every commandment, which I discovered in God’s Word, so that I could earn God’s love.

I strove for half my life to win approval from those I loved. It was ten years after I came to Christ that I finally realized that God’s love is not only a free and unconditional gift, but that it also lasts forever (1 John 3:1). We trust in God’s love for Salvation, and we can trust in His love for every area of our life (Psalm 86:14; Galatians 3:1-3).

We do not need to spend time or energy on trying to earn God’s love (John 3:16, Romans 5:8). Even when we were dead in sin, God’s great mercy and love reached out and saved us (Ephesians 2:4-5; 1 John 4:9-11). Nothing in heaven or earth can separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:35-39). We are crucified with Christ and He loves us too, and gave Himself for us (Galatians 2:20).

We cannot be good enough, holy enough or spiritual enough to deserve God’s love (Hebrews 4:9-12). It is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8-9). If the Christian walk depended on us, then we would have no need for Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. As we allow the peace and joy of the Holy Spirit to fill our soul and spirit to the point of saturation, we bask in the Sonshine of His love.

Prayer:
Father God, as baby Christians, we continue to experience negative thoughts and attitudes, but we want to have Your mind within us. Remind us to set our boundaries to protect us from the negative people in our lives that tear us down (1 Corinthians 11:1). Please bring us to a place of inner healing and help us to walk in complete serenity through faith in Your goodness (Jobs 34:19). You live in us, rejoice over us with joy, quiet us by Your love and exult over us with singing (Zephaniah 2:17). You diminish all of our fears and insecurities, because You care about us (1 Peter 5:6-7).

Thought for the Day:
Since God in us is love, we can love and forgive our self and love one another. – 1 John 4:7-8

The Greatest Gift of All

When we judge our self according to the scale, which the world uses to measure popularity and success, we may come up lacking. Life seems unfair, because other people have greater advantages than we do when we consider the temporal blessing they may receive. Yet, no matter how many possession we acquire, they never satisfy us.

Spiritually, the children of God have the richest of all blessings. We have Christ in us, who is both our hope and our greatest gift (Colossians 1:27). God is the hope of all people, from the ends of the earth and to the farthest seas (Psalm 65:6). He gives us more than this world could ever offer us (Psalm77:11-15). He gives us Himself (Psalm 89:1-2, 5-8).

We may fear giving up control of our life to God, because He may require things from us, which would further tarnish our earthly popularity and reputation. However, if we actually gain our personal identity and status for success from Christ in us, rather from our personal talents and achievements, we realize that our real worth is based on the love of Christ (John 3:16-17; Romans 8:35-39).

God’s greatest gift to us is His sacrifice of His own Son (Revelation 13:8). Jesus paid the price of our redemption and freed us from a worthless life of sin, giving us His free gift of salvation (Romans 6:23; Psalm 2:4). Those who dwell in the shelter of the Most High God will rest in Him. He is our refuge and our strength in whom we can always trust (Psalm 91:1-2).

Prayer:
Father God, because we love You, You will deliver us. You protect us as we acknowledge You. You answer us when we call on You. You deliver us from trouble and honor us. You satisfy us with a long life of salvation (Psalm 91:14-16). We give You thanks for Your loving kindness, which endures forever. Your unfailing love produces wonderful blessings for us. You satisfy our thirsty soul and You fill our hungry soul with many good things (Psalm 107:1, 8-9).

Thought for the Day:
God gives us the greatest gifts of all; never forget His benefits and bless His holy name. – Psalm 103:1

Our Divine Identity

Human beings are born with a body and soul, which are alive, but our spirit is dead on arrival. Our spirit is buried under the layers of generational sin since the time of Adam and Eve (Ephesians 2:1-5). Our living soul – our mind, will and emotions – is fragile and often fails under the weight of life. Circumstances beat us down relentlessly.

Our dead spirit and our unhealthy soul affect our body as well. Without Christ as our Savior we are crippled in life. We search relentlessly to find the missing piece, which will make us whole. What we lack is the vital power of God. No one is intrinsically good except God (Mark 10:18). Therefore, we need Christ to move into our life.

Once we come to Christ we are totally complete in Him (Colossians 2:9-10). Jesus is our only way, truth and life (John 14:6). We have no meaningful existence without Him (2 Corinthians 13:5). He lives through us, making good choices, which last for eternity (Colossians 3:3). He anoints us with His Holy Spirit and power (Acts 10:38).

We live, move and have our existence only in Jesus (Act 17:28). Christ actually does the work of God through us (Romans 12:15; Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:18; 1 Corinthians 12:27). Our true identity as Authentic Christians comes from Christ living in us and expressing God’s character through us (Hebrews 13:20; Galatians 5:22-23).

We are all united with Christ in His Body. He uses us as individual members, each with unique gifts and talents. We work in ministries both to a corporate, church Body and to the dying world around us. God equips us to walk in His will through Christ in us. We live to fulfill His eternal purpose with our life (Matthew 11:29; Ephesians 2:10).

Prayer:
Father God, You give us Your eternal life, which no one can take from us (John 10:28). We are unified with You, and we are beneficiaries of Your divine will (1 Corinthians 6:17; 2 Peter 1:4). We have constant fellowship with You, Your Son and Your Spirit (1 John 1:3, 9; Phil 2:1). Thank You for seating us in heavenly places in Your Son (1 Corinthians 1:30; Ephesians 2:6). We give You all the praise, honor and glory.

Thought for the Day:
Any identity not centered in Christ is merely temporary and fleeting.