New Life in Christ

God loved us while we were still sinner; but if we do not walk away from our sinful lifestyle, then we do not belong to Him (1 John 1:9, 3:9). God demands whole-hearted commitment from His Saints (Philippians 3:8-9).

We prove our love to God by our obedience to Him and His Word (John 14:15). Once we come to Christ for salvation, His Spirit fills our spirit and soul, and we learn to walk in step with Him (Galatians 5:25).

We discard our old nature, the personality we are born with, and we put on our new nature, which God creates in us through His Spirit (Ephesians 4:22-24; Colossians 3:9-10).

God’s Spirit changes us from the inside out. His divine nature and the fruit of His Spirit replace our weak human character (2 Peter 1:4; Galatians 5:15-25). We ask God to try us and test us and examine our heart and mind (Psalm 26:2).

We learn to walk in His truth and enjoy His love, which is always surrounding us (Psalm 26:3). We look forward to spending eternity with Him and enjoy His eternal life even now on this earth (John 17:3).

Nothing will ever separate us from God’s love; not even adversity, demonic activity, earthly circumstances, personal relationships or evil people devising our demise (Romans 8:35-39).

We live, move and have our entire being in Christ (Acts 17:28). We consult God for His plans for every moment of our day (Proverbs 3:5-6). We walk in joy and peace in the center of God’s will.

Prayer:
Father God, the fact that You love us while we are still sinners helps us to realize that You desire that no one will eternally perish in the lake of fire (John 3:16-17). However, we often condemn our self by insisting that we live life our own way, instead of in Your will for us (John 3:18).

We attempt to fit You into the mold of our image for You, rather than to allow You to conform us to the image of Your Son, Jesus Christ. Remind us to humble our self under Your mighty hand (1 Peter 5:6; James 4:10), and to serve You until our dying breath (Psalm 146:2).

Thought for the Day:
When we come together as Believers, let us share what God is doing in our life, how we recently sensed His presence in our life, how His grace saw us through a particularly trying experience, what He is teaching us from His Word and what He is perfecting in our life.

Transitions

Change is abhorrent to most people; however, life is full of adjustments. Much of the transition we experience as a new Believer occurs in our soul (Romans 8:5). Our spirit is Born Again; and although we still physically exist on this earth, we no longer walk according to the dictates of our physical, mental or emotional desires. We learn to walk according to the leading of God’s Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:15-25).

Christ frees us from the bondage of our past. We are forgiven and there is no longer any condemnation (Matthew 6:14-15; Romans 8:1). We choose to change our priorities. We do not pursue anything, which prevents us from fellowshipping with God or walking in His perfect plan, which He ordained for us before we were ever born (Ephesians 2:10).

We fight the carnal desires or satanic impulses, which continue to tempt us, by using spiritual weapons such as prayer, Bible reading, spiritual fellowship, and the ability, which the Spirit gives us, to corral our thoughts to the obedience of God’s Word (2 Corinthians 10:3-5; Psalm 1:2; Joshua 1:8). Once we come to understand that Christ lives in us, we have no desire to ever live in the flesh again (Galatians 2:20).

This allows God to destroy the demonic strongholds from our past (John 8:32). He changes our negative thought patterns to the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). He heals our negative emotions and fills us with the fruit of His Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). He removes our negative behavior and exchanges it with acts of service to the King of kings (Ephesians 4:22-24; 1 Timothy 6:15). We abide in unity with both our Father and our Lord.

Prayer:
Father God, the world follows self-help gurus and they hire life coaches to help them to succeed in life. These “experts” can only help a person to thrive in body and soul. Only You can rebirth our spirit, which is dead in sin. Only You can completely fulfill us in body, soul and spirit (Ephesians 2:1; Romans 6:11, 8:10). You bring us victory in every area of our life, and make us more than conquerors (Romans 8:37). If we remain in You and walk in Your Spirit we will live fruitful lives (John 15:5). We love You with all of our heart and we live, move and have our being only in You (Acts 17:28).

Thought for the Day:
We often resist transitions; and, therefore, never receive the blessings, which accompany them; instead, we can embrace the changes God brings into our life and look for the advantages He has in store for us through them.

Trials are not Punitive

Some people think that if someone is going through a prolonged illness, time out of work, heart-wrenching grief or a trial of some sort, that God is trying to teach them something; and that once they learn it, they will be freed from the trial. Those in the trial beat themselves up by thinking they need to pray more, read their Bible more or make some attempt to appease God’s wrath.

This causes people to doubt their connection to the Lord and gives them hours of unrest and soul searching. Trials are not only times of correction and repentance, but also of renewal and sweet fellowship with our Father God. God is jealous and enjoys having us all to Himself. We find our self lost in the presence of God. We surrender all control to Him.

During times of trial, we have an abundance of time to spend with God. When we think back on those days of horrid illness, stress or persecution, we smile; not because we are masochists and love pain, but because our normal schedule is totally interrupted and we have free time. We are isolated from the world and able to spend that sweet time of oneness with the Lord.

Often, the Lord will give us a “holiday” through a trial, during which we can spend focused time worshipping the Beloved of our soul. During trials, do not trust in your own efforts or expect generosity from family, church and friends. Instead, wait with your whole soul – your mind, will and emotions – and put complete hope in the Lord and His Word.

Prayer:
Father God, You hear our voice in the morning, as we lay our requests before you and wait expectantly on You (Psalm 5:3). You love to spend all of Your time with each one of us. The next time we are without work, isolated by sickness or find our self alone through the death of a loved one or the devastation of divorce, we will take this time to spend entirely with You. When we do, we always find our self irrevocably changed in spirit, soul and body.

Thought for the Day:
We walk in the ways of the Lord and wait for Him, because His name and fame are the desires of our heart. – Isaiah 26:8