Life is Not About Us

As authentic Christians, we now live by the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:2). Our transformation rests firmly on the rock of the gospel of Christ through His Holy Spirit (Romans 12:2; Psalm 18:2).

 

We live by His faith in love, filled with the fruit of and following the leading of God’s Spirit on a moment-by-moment basis (Galatians 5:1; 5:22-23; Ephesians 5:18).

 

We no longer strive to earn God’s love or to live a holy life. We simply walk in obedience. We live on earth to glorify our Father, not by our own human efforts, but only by the power of Christ within us.

 

Jesus loves us so much, that for our benefit he gave Himself up to the horrific death on Calvary’s cross. Through His sacrifice, we are now acceptable to God in Christ (1 Peter 2:5; Romans 15:7).

 

We have been crucified with Christ. Therefore, it is no longer we who live our life, but Christ, the Messiah, who lives in and through us.

 

The life that we now live in our body on this earth, we live by faith in, devotion to, dependence on and complete confidence in the Son of God (Galatians 2:20, Amplified Bible).

 

Jesus is our only hope of experiencing God’s glory (Colossians 1:27). We could never be good enough in our human effort to earn a place in Heaven (Ephesians 2:8-10).

 

We completely surrender our plans, goals and will to God’s will for our life and we live in perfect union with Christ. Our old sinful nature is crucified with Christ, and sin has no more power over our choices.

 

Prayer:

Father God, You planned, before You ever created the earth, for Jesus to give up His glory in Heaven, to take the form of a man, to humble Himself and to willingly die in our place (Philippians 2:8). You call us to follow in His example and to die to our humanity as well, exchanging our sinful desires for His righteousness.

 

Now, by Your Spirit’s power within us, we can put on the mind of Christ (Philippians 2:5). Therefore, because of Your mercy and grace, we will no longer succumb to the negative suggestions of our carnal nature, but we live a life that is free from the destructive consequences of sin (Romans 12:2; Galatians 5:16).

 

Thought for the Day:

We renew our mind by reading God’s Word and walking in continual obedience to His Holy Spirit. – Ephesians 5:26; John 14:15

Struggling to Survive

At the root of sin and degradation is pride and rebellion. These often stem from unresolved conflicts in our past. We hide our pain behind a veneer of self-reliance in order to avoid further injury.

We do not want to take a chance on being vulnerable again. Struggling to survive, we choose self-absorption and arrogance instead of living a life of humility and self-sacrifice.

We live within the parameters of our sinful nature and set our mind on what our flesh desires (Romans 8:5). Our spirit is dead in sin and we cannot help our self (Ephesians 2:1).

Even church attendees who claim Christ as their savior play along with worldly culture, advice and popular demands. They came under conviction at one point, but their life was never converted.

Political correctness, religious pluralism, humanism and other new age lies color our concept of holiness. We take the path of least resistance and follow the crowd.

We lack discernment, spiritual understanding and perception. Caving in to the struggles, strain and stress of everyday life, we turn away from Biblical wisdom, God’s love and devotion.

Jesus is the perfect example of a humble, yet powerful life. He said that no one could take His life until He was ready to lay it down (John 10:18). By following Jesus’ example we truly convert from hedonism to holiness.

Jesus illustrates for us that the Lord is our portion, provider and protector as we obey His Word. We seek His face with our whole heart and God is gracious to us according to His promises (Psalm 119:57-58).

Prayer:
Father God, we invite Your Holy Spirit to cleanse our thoughts, heal our memory, calm our fears, and direct our goals and plans. We trust that in our pain and suffering, You are working out Your will and purpose for our life, giving us opportunities to share Your love and to bear fruit for Your Kingdom.

Teach us discernment through our life experiences; heal our raw emotions of discontentment, loneliness and anxiety; give us hope to overcome anger, unforgiveness and bitterness; and help us to walk in Your will with faith for each moment of our day.

Thought for the Day:
The Holy Spirit wants to direct the details of our day, so let’s step aside, stop obsessing and trust and obey; there is no better way to enjoy the joy of the Lord.

The Presence of God

God is present within us, and in our world through the lives of His Saints. His Holy Spirit takes up residence in us and we are His temple. We live, move and have our being in Him (Acts 17:28).

His supernatural power supplies all of our needs through His glorious riches (Philippians 4:19). He abundantly meets our needs in ways we never have imagined.

Our Father rarely uses signs and wonders to accomplish His will. He works through ordinary people and often by ordinary means (John 4:48). His quiet presence is always in our midst (John 14:16; Matthew 28:20).

The fleshly desires, of our Adamic sin nature will decrease, as Christ in us increases (Ephesians 2:1-3). He replaces our carnality with His divine nature (Romans 8:8-9; 2 Peter 1:4).

Christ set us free from the bondage to sin, and He is showering us with His forgiveness, holiness, peace and joy through His Spirit (Romans 6:18, 14:17). Through His forgiveness, we can forgive our self and those who hurt us.

We have the choice now to walk in the Spirit or the flesh (Galatians 5:15-25). We are no longer deceived by the allure of the world, for we recognize it as empty and devastating.

As we put Christ as our first priority in our life, and eliminate our attachment to the world, we enjoy real devotion at Jesus’ feet (Luke 10:41-42). We organize our life and reduce the excesses until we have more time for worship and service.

The faith of Christ brightens our day and His mercy and grace fuel our desire to walk only in His will. We submit to Christ as He does the works of our Father in and through us (John 5:19).

Prayer:
Father God, we please You by our willingness and obedience to Your Word. With Christ in us, we are enough – good enough, strong enough, obedient enough, anointed enough to serve You with our life (Deuteronomy 10:12-13).

We serve You with joy in our heart, and we dwell in Your presence with gratitude and praise. We bless Your name, for You are good, and Your everlasting mercy and truth endure throughout ever generation (Psalm 100:2-5).

Thought for the Day:
God shows us the path of life, as well as continual delights at His right hand; and we find complete joy in His presence. – Psalm 16:11

God’s Fullness – His Presence Within

We have the opportunity to enjoy the richest measure of God’s presence in our life. He is already there, but we often ignore Him, or fail to seek Him out more than during a few moments of devotion a day.

God wants to fill us with all of His fullness. He desires to flood our entire body, soul and spirit with the richest measure of His Presence (Ephesians 3:16-20, Amplified Bible).

He starts to work in us the moment we come to Him for salvation. Then He commissions us to carry out His purpose in our life (Ephesians 2:10).

God wants to do more for us and in us than we could ever imagine, dream, desire or hope. He will do it too, if we simply surrender every area of our life to Him.

He not only gives us strength to live each day, but He also fortifies that strength with all the unrestricted resources and mighty power available to us through His Holy Spirit, who is abiding in our body, His Temple (1 Corinthians 6:19; Philippians 2:12-13; Ephesians 3:16).

Jesus Christ actually lives in our spirit by our faith in His finished work on Calvary’s Cross, so that the love of God will firmly unite us to Him with its power (Ephesians 3:17).

Our life will follow God’s path of fulfillment, and we will receive God’s intense and continual love from Him, His Body and our family and friends, who He brings into our life.

Our sinful desires melt away like wax. We cannot boast in the presence of God, because we do not earn it, it is a free gift (Psalm 68:2; 1 Corinthians 1:29). We reverence His presence in our life and value Him and His Word more than all the riches of this world (Psalm 19:10).

Prayer:
Father God, the power and authority of Christ increases in us as we decrease the hold we have over our life; so help us to totally surrender to and trust in You. You promise never to leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). You will continually abide in us regardless of our thoughts, words or actions, even though we may grieve Your Spirit.

Over the years of our service to You, make Your presence more real to us each day and help us to abide in You each moment of our day (John 15:4-5). Help us to send the roots of our faith deeper into Your love, so that we can willingly serve You with our whole life.

Thought for the Day:
God gives us the richest portion of His love, and fills us completely with His divine presence; flooding every fiber of our body, soul and spirit with Himself.

– Ephesians 3:19 Amplified Bible.

Whole-hearted Devotion

In the wilderness, the pillar of fire kept the Israelites warm in cold desert evenings, and the cloud gave them shade under the hot desert sun. They clearly saw God’s will when He moved the fire at night and the cloud by day to direct them (Numbers 9:20).

Yet, I think that we actually have more of an advantage of walking in God’s will than they did, because we have God’s Holy Spirit residing within us every second of every day.

Even in times of trouble and uncertainty, God is happy to generously give us His wisdom (James 1:5). He searches our heart and discerns our every desire, thought and motive (Jeremiah 17:10).

When we serve God with wholehearted devotion, a submissive will and an obedient mind, He tells us whether to turn to the right or the left to find His will for each moment of our day (1 Chronicles 28:9; Isaiah 30:21).

When our delight is in the Lord, He actually puts His desires in our heart (Nehemiah 7:5; Psalm 37:4). As we commit our thoughts, choices and feelings to the Lord, He leads us in His will for our day (Proverbs 16:3).

Some people enjoy physical abundance with more money and possessions than they know what to do with; however, they have a life filled with greed, strife and disappointment (Proverbs 15:16).

Even when we have few material possessions or advantages, we have an abundance, because it is covered with God’s love (Proverbs 16:8). Our ways are peaceful and full of God’s favor as we serve Him with wholehearted devotion (Proverbs 3:17).

Prayer:
Father God, You love us so much, that when we ask, we receive; when we seek, we find; when we knock, You open doors for us to walk in the center of Your will (Matthew 7:8). As we always look to You and seek Your face, we find our delight in Your presence within us (Job 22:26, 27:10; Proverbs 3:5-6).

When our thoughts, words and behavior please You, even our enemies live in peace with us, and You grant us our heart’s desires without withholding any of our requests (Proverbs 16:17; Psalm 21:2).

A baby bird sits in the nest, trusting its parents to fill its gaping mouth. As we have a similar trust in You and we open our mouth wide, as our Heavenly Parent, You always fill it (Psalm 81:10).

Thought for the Day:
Our life is not our own, and it is not up to us to make decisions and to plan our activities for our day; instead, we pray and God communicates to us where to go and what to do.           – Jeremiah 10:23, 42:3

Living in Contentment

As we live in the presence of God, and enjoy the still, quiet moments of our devotion time each day, then our schedule, to-do lists and responsibilities fade into the background of our mind.

Cleansing our soul and life, of dead works and all negative emotions, enables us to freely hear God’s voice. Unhindered by the destructive influence of the devil’s lies, we walk in the Spirit. ( http://www.theophostic.com ).

Continually praising God for His provision in our life teaches us gratitude for what we have, which overshadows our longings for what we do not have. We learn contentment at His feet (Philippians 4:11).

While we praise God for who He is, for His blessings and for His perfect plan for our life, we consult Him throughout our day and hear His will for each moment of our life (Proverbs 3:5-6).

This way, when work deadlines, emotional turmoil in our family, rushed schedules, slander and false accusation, and a lack of fulfillment in our life all upset our sense of stability, we have God’s Spirit to return our soul and spirit to peace and rest (Hebrews 10:4).

Once we learn to live in the gratification and fulfillment, which walking in the Spirit afford us, we never go back (Galatians 5:15-25). If life pulls us from the shelter of God’s wings, we scurry back under the shadow of our Almighty God (Psalm 91:1,4).

We accomplish more in our day under the instruction of God’s Spirit than by the direction of all of our lists, calendar reminders and sticky notes. The light of God’s Son brightens each step of our way (John 14:6).

Prayer:
Father God, draw us to Your side and never let us go. Wrap us in Your everlasting arms and help us to experience the contentment of living in Your presence (Deuteronomy 33:27). Lead us to accomplish Your will, rather than our will, for every moment of our day.

Remind us to look for divine appointments to share Your love with people we meet. Help us never to look past someone who may need Your light in their life, simply because we are too busy. Our days are numbered, and we want to live each one of them in the center of Your will (Job 14:5; Psalm 39:4).

Thought for the Day:
As we contentedly dwell in the Kingdom of God and seek His will for each moment of our life, God provides for all of our needs. – Luke 12:31-32

Emotional Tanks

When my children were in high school, I created a poster with an emotional tank for each member of our family. The object was for each of us to signify how full our emotional tank was each day.

This way we could all deposit into one another’s tank, especially into those who were running low. Well, my idea bombed with my family, but I am hoping you might like this idea.

To add to someone’s emotional tank, we need to know them well, learn what is important to them, and then converse with them and provide for them according to their love language. (www.5lovelanguages.com )

Pay attention to the words they use and listen between the lines. Never belittle their ideas, hope or dreams. Deposit daily encouragement into their emotional tank and inspire them to follow God’s plan for their day.

Deposit your time, energy, understanding and godly wisdom into their emotional tank. Be there for one another and be patient and kind to one another.

Build a foundation of trust in your family. Love depends upon trust; and when trust is broken, it is hard to feel love. Keep promises, tell the truth, and be a person of integrity.

Admit when you are wrong, and deposit into their emotional tanks with sincere apologies and changed behavior. Love unconditionally so they will feel secure, safe and affirmed.

You may not agree with their behavior or choices, and you can discipline when necessary, but separate the person from their behavior and validate them as your special treasure.

Deposit second chances, change your focus, and utilize forgiveness in every breach of confidence. You do not need to be victimized, however; and you can establish boundaries, which are safe for everyone.

Interdependence is a well-adjusted relationship centered on God who dwells in the midst of us. Following the guidance of God’s Spirit moment by moment throughout the day will help us to deposit rather than to withdraw from one another’s emotional tank.

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to cooperate so that no one person makes all the sacrifices. Help us to accept one another for who we are and to request changes only when necessary for the peace of the household.

Remind us to enjoy one another’s company, to cherish our relationship, not to take anyone for granted and to value the priceless connection You have given to us all.

Thought for the Day:
Pray together, have family devotions, serve the community together, play together; but also give one another space to have time to pursue their own interests as you make daily deposits into one another’s emotional tank.