The Body of Christ – Safety in Numbers

As the body of Christ, we stick together, no matter where we live or how many miles separate us. We can stay connected through social media, even though we rarely see one another face-to-face.

 

In nature, it is the animal that wanders from the safety of the herd that gets attacked by a predator. Satan uses this same tactic on Believers. He finds us wandering alone and pounces (1 Peter 5:8).

 

God created Eve, because He saw that Adam suffered when he was alone. He also created us as His Body, because there is safety, encouragement and blessings when we dwell together in unity (Psalm 133:1).

 

Without the Body of Christ we get lonely, roam from the straight and narrow path, and make poor choices. Alone, we are vulnerable, but a three-fold chord cannot be broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12). The Body loves us and helps to protect us.

 

When we yoke with Jesus and other Believers, our load is lighter and we help each other with our burden of guilt, trials and storms in life. Our perspective is broadened by seeing things from another’s point of view.

 

Even Jesus chose 12 men to disciple and to keep Him company during His three years of focused ministry on His way to the cross. Daily, they walked together, healed the sick and reclaimed people from the devil’s kingdom of darkness.

 

Prayer:

Father God, help us to lay down our pride, to take the risks of being vulnerable which are inherent in relationships, and to encourage one another. Remind us that a best friend and prayer partner help us to diffuse our negative feelings and experiences, because they give us someone with which to share our burdens.

 

Friendships can be messy and cause problems in our life, but life is enhanced by transparent relationships, regardless of the ups and downs they may create. Thank You that You are our closest friend and that You always stick closer to us than a brother (Proverbs 18:24).

 

Thought for the Day:

Jesus knew the value of walking together with other Saints, although many turned against Him or deserted Him in the final hours of His life on this earth; He chose to live vulnerably in front of both the multitudes and His disciples.

It Only Takes a Spark

There is a truth in life that we often overlook. The more that we value Christ’s sacrifice for our life, the more intense is our desire to share Him with other people.

 

It only takes one spark to get a fire going. Letting people know that God’s mercy is new every morning, and available in their life as well as our own, is the best news that some people could ever hear. They are just waiting for us to speak up (Romans 10:14).

 

The fountain of living water within us is not meant to cleanse and nourish us alone, but to overflow to everyone around us (John 7:38). We cannot hide the light of Christ within us under a basket, but we are to set it on a hilltop for the whole world to see (Matthew 5:15).

 

I want to take more of an advantage of opportunities to share the good news of God’s love with other people. I do not want to take His sacrifice on Calvary’s cross for granted, but I want to broadcast it to the whole world.

 

That way, anyone willing to listen to what I have to say will have the opportunity to surrender their life to His love just like I did.

 

If I can spark the curiosity or hunger in just one person, and that person and I share God’s truth with one other person, and continue to do this every day, we will certainly soon set the world on fire.

 

Prayer:

Father God, give us the boldness and love for others to share Your Good News with anyone willing to listen. Give us many divine appointments throughout our day to tell people about salvation through Jesus Christ. Someone shared the news with us; so remind us to “pay it forward”.

 

Break our heart over the sin in our life and draw us closer to Your presence within us with each passing day. Allow the intimacy we share with You to grow every moment of our life, and remind us to consult with Your Spirit all through the day (Proverbs 3:5-6).

 

Thought for the Day:

God’s mercy is the greatest gift we have ever been given and we can share that Good News with anyone willing to listen to us; we just make that first move to greet or offer to pray for anyone God brings across our path.

 

God’s Transforming and Conforming Power

God’s Holy Spirit sanctifies us throughout our lifetime, until we are perfected according to His standard of the fullness of Christ in us (Ephesians 4:13). He makes us holy, even as He is holy (1 Peter 1:16).

 

We are fully human, but Christ in us is fully divine. God’s Spirit faithfully transitions us from one stage of God’s glory to another (2 Corinthians 3:18). He conforms us with the mind of Christ (Romans 12:2).

 

God’s Spirit slowly matures us until we completely share in the divine nature of Christ in us (Ephesians 4:13). We have the same chance, which Jesus did, to live a spirit-filled life.

 

Our identity is no longer dependent on our accomplishments or our human standing in this world. We are a King’s kid (Galatians 3), a new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5) and heirs with Christ of the Kingdom of God (Romans 8).

 

God is a shield for us and gives us His glory to replace our humanity. He hears our cries for help, and He lifts up our head when we are discouraged and alone. He hears us even from His holy hill (Psalm 3:3-4).

 

We are different people from what we were before we trusted Jesus for salvation; and therefore, we make a huge difference in this world. People recognize that our attitude and demeanor are unique; they sense an aura of peace and kindness that is unlike their other acquaintances.

 

We mature in Christ as we relinquish total control of our life to Him. We trust God completely to direct our life according to His will and way, even if it is contrary to our human reasoning and understanding (Revelation 3:7).

 

Prayer:

Father God, You are constantly calling, guiding and encouraging us to trust You with more and more of our life. Thank You for opening and closing doors which would divert us from Your chosen path for our life. Help us to wait patiently on You and not to jump ahead or lag behind Your divine timing.

 

Arrange divine appointments for us to impact lives in the sphere of our influence and to help them to come to a saving knowledge of Your Son, Jesus. Remind us to put our mind on heavenly things and to reject the carnal concerns with which the devil attempts to side track and discourage us. Help us to realize that Christ in us is greater than Satan and all of his ruses, lies and demons.

 

Thought for the Day:

When our soul is discouraged, anxious and overwhelmed, we can put our trust in God, and praise Him for what He has already done in our life (Psalms 42:11), and He will change our attitude, thoughts, feelings to line up to His Word and the fruit of His Spirit.

 

God Uses Satan for His Purposes

The devil cheated Adam and Eve out of their dominion over the earth by his deception, manipulation and lies. This was part of God’s eternal design. What Satan plans to use to harm us, God means for our good (Genesis 50:20).

 

Satan also schemed in his heart to destroy Jesus and to protect his place as the god of this world. Yet, Jesus went to the cross with joy in His heart as He focused on the glory awaiting Him in Heaven (Hebrews 12:2).

 

We live life with this same joy in our own hearts, regardless of our circumstances, looking forward to sitting together with Christ and serving Him for eternity (1 Corinthians 4:9-13; 2 Corinthians 6:8 10; Ephesians 1:21, 2:4-6).

 

There is no need for us to spend time fighting Satan. We draw near to God, resist the devil and he must flee from us (James 4:7). Satan has no authority of his own. He can only do the bidding of our Father God.

 

For example, Jesus, the Lamb of God, who is opening the seal, bowl and trumpet judgments during the Great Tribulation, directs the plans and purposes of the anti-Christ (Revelation 5:2-10).

 

God uses Satan for His eternal purpose on the earth. He gives Satan the power to employ sin’s temptation to draw hearts away from God, which were never sold out to Him in the first place.

 

These people sit on the fence, giving lip-service to God and serving and giving to God’s Kingdom; but they are just going through the motions (Mathew 7:22). They were never truly converted in their spirit.

 

When we totally surrender our will to God in salvation, His Spirit enters our spirit. He directs our every thought, word and deed. We actually become the love of Christ to the world of lost humanity around us (John 2:12-14; Exodus 33:13).

 

Prayer:

Father God, as authentic Believers, we submit to You, then resist the devil, and he has to flee from us (James 4:7). This does not mean our tribulation in life will end, but that You love us and make us more than conquerors through every trial (Romans 8:37). We can trust in You through everything that we experience in life, because You care for us (1 Peter 5:7).

 

You even make all of our paths straight because of our enemies (Psalm 27:11; Zechariah 4:7). Jesus is exalted in us as we overcome life’s hurdles. He makes us His joint heirs by His power within us (1 John 3:2; Ephesians 3:6). We find our true self, hidden with Christ in You (Colossians 3:3). Help us to respond to You when You call us out of sin into Your glorious life (1 Peter 2:9).

 

Thought for the Day:

Problems are simply opportunities for God to prove Himself strong on our behalf; we find out what He is doing in every situation and then join Him.

The Father’s Comfort

When we focus on God through life’s issues, He gives us refuge and never leaves our soul destitute (Psalm 141:8; Deuteronomy 31:6; Isaiah 41:10). There is no reason to fear what life may throw at us, because He will help us (Isaiah 41:13).

 

God’s love for us is unconditional and everlasting (Jeremiah 31:3). We did nothing to earn it, and we can do nothing to lose it. It is perpetually ours (Malachi 3:6; Matthew 28:20).

 

As authentic Believers, we enjoy continual fellowship with God’s Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who abides within us by His Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 1:9).

 

I am not a great fan of darkness. I like street lights outside my window at night, or a nightlight on in the bathroom. I am not afraid of the dark, but I am a fan of seeing what is around me at all times.

 

When the sky is cloudy and hides the stars; when the moon is in the dark new moon phase of its cycle; and when there is no electricity all at the same time, I feel like I am blind and I feel stuck in my body with no way to escape.

 

However, God gives us the treasure of His Holy Spirit within us, even in the darkness. His riches, which He hides in secret places, are always ours to enjoy – even when days are dark and hope is waning (Isaiah 45:3).

 

Prayer:

Father God, thank You that Jesus is the light of the world, and there is no darkness as we walk in Your ways (John 8:12). Joshua is a good example to us of listening to Your direction. The walls of Jericho posed an impossible obstacle. As Joshua obeyed Your instructions, the walls fell straight down. Even archeology proves the accuracy of this Biblical account.

 

Joshua did not use human reasoning to capture the city; but He followed Your will for seven days, and then the city fell before his eyes (Hebrews 11:30). The wisdom of man is foolish when compared to Your ways (1 Corinthians 3:19). Teach us to acknowledge You in all of our thoughts, words and deeds (Proverbs 3:5-6).

 

Thought for the Day:

With Christ in us, we are also the light of the world; as we rest our soul in Christ and bask in the mercies and comfort of God, He uses us to bring His truth and comfort to our world. – Matthew 5:14-16, 11:28; 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

 

The Buzzard Within

While sitting outside at a Veteran’s Day celebration, we all glanced skyward to view the Sheriff Department’s fly-over. In the thrill of this meaningful moment, I also noticed a majestic kettle of vultures.

 

Their wings spanned forty-eight inches and never flapped, as they soared on invisible wind currents. One of these birds nose-dived to the earth and landed within a few feet of me.

 

Once I recovered from the shock of his sudden close proximity to my chair, I realized that what I always thought was a beautiful, agile bird of prey actually had an awkward and grotesquely revolting appearance.

 

This reminded me of our unsaved heart. We disguise our disfigured soul within us with an outward coat of cosmetics and brightly colored clothing. Yet, we remain nothing more than whitewashed tombs (Matthew 23:27-28).

 

The good news is that Christ died to make us a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). Our spirit is washed anew in the blood of the Lamb of God (Revelation 22:14). Through His sanctifying work, God’s Spirit makes our soul beautiful in His timing and way (Ecclesiastes 3:11).

 

On this earth, God’s Spirit crucifies our soul and frees us from slavery to sin. He makes us holy and frees us from the bondage and destruction, through which sin hinders and overwhelms us.

 

He unites us with Christ through the new birth and provides us with the blessings and promises of eternity both in this life and the next. He frees us from dwelling on our past or fearing the future (Isaiah 43:18).

 

In heaven, He will glorify our body by giving us an immortal existence with Him forever. We look forward to a body free of age-related issues, illness and fatigue.

 

We look forward to continuing to live in God’s presence, adding the physical existence to our soul and spirit’s enjoyment of His presence now. Our salvation will be complete in body, as well as in spirit and soul, and we will dwell with Him for eternity.

 

Prayer:

Father God, we live in Christ with Christ in us, and death has no more mastery over us. We also die to sin and live for You. Then in eternity, You glorify our body and provide us with immortality for our body, as well as our spirit and soul (Romans 6:4-11).

 

Thank You for forgetting who we used to be and giving us a new identity in Christ (Isaiah 65:17). You give us a new heart and put Your Spirit within us (Ezekiel 36:26). We rejoice at the thought of seeing Your Kingdom in all of its glory, since we are born by the blood of Your unblemished Lamb (John 3:3).

 

Thought for the Day:

God buries our old, carnal nature in Christ by baptizing us into His death; then He sanctifies us through one stage of glory to another and gives us a new, resurrected life.

 

 

No Longer a Sinner – Divinity of Christ in Us

 

The Bible is full of symbolism. For instance, water baptism is a symbol of our death, burial and resurrection in Christ. We raise to walk in a new life with Him.

 

We do not die physically in baptism, but our flesh dies spiritually, and is now able to disregard the lure of sin in this world. Sin no longer tempts us as it used to, and we are free from its bondage.

 

We relate to Christ’s new life in us to a greater degree than we connect to this world. We died together with Him; and it is Him, not us, that now lives in and through us (Galatians 2:20).

 

We are one with Christ; and through His divine nature within us, we die to the desire to sin. God adopts us into His family. We share in His benefits in His Kingdom of God as co-heirs with Jesus.

 

In Christ, we gradually become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21). Our focus in life, our habits and the people we hang around with all change. Our life is spiritual now, rather than carnal and fleshly.

 

Our vital union with Jesus, puts us in right standing before God, our Father (John 15:1-11; Romans 6:3-11; Ephesians 5:30). He births our spirit, and we live a life which is pleasing to God. We are one with Christ and members of His Body.

 

Our old, carnal flesh – our intellect, emotions and will – is crucified with Christ and we died to sin (John 15:4; Romans 6:6, 8:11; Colossians 3:3, 9; 1 Corinthians 6:19; Ephesians 4:22). We are filled with the fruit of God’s Spirit, which is the divine nature of Christ in us (Galatians 5:22-23).

 

Prayer:

Father God, remind us that the fruit of Your Spirit grows in us only as we abide in Christ and follow Your will for our life (John 15:4). Our living union with the Trinity allows us to fellowship with You every moment of our day and results in our eternal security (John 10:27-30).

 

Create in us a clean heart, and use us as a living testimony for Your glory (Psalm 51:10). Thank You for loving us unconditionally and changing us from the inside out. We look forward to You continuing to change our relationship with You by Your Spirit, until our human nature is altered to one that reflects Your goodness to a lost and dying world.

 

Thought for the Day:

As a Christian, we are transformed by God’s Spirit from one stage of glory to another until we reflect to the world the exact image of Christ in us. – 2 Corinthians 3:18; Hebrews 1:3