Relinquishing Our Hold on This Life

We have no need to fear death or to cling to this life. We can relinquish our desires to succeed in this society, because it is only a vapor on a cold winter’s day (James 4:14). It quickly dissipates.

 

Our dependence on earthly advantages leave us insecure at best. As we value our temporal life with less importance and put a higher priority on our spiritual life, our levels of stress, fear, anxiety and depression about our life on this earth diminish.

 

Satan’s lies and negative self-talk, which comes from significant others in our life and fills our mind, attempt to rob us of our confidence in God’s love.

 

It is important for us to reject these negative thoughts and attitudes as they pop up and replace them with God’s truth (Philippians 4:8). We agree with what God says about us in His Word.

Click to access ANDERSON_WhoIAmInChrist.pdf

 

As we develop a habit of prayer, this proves our dependence upon God. It humbles us and glorifies God who holds all power, glory and honor in His hands.

 

Only as we snuggle in the palm of God’s hand are we safe. He prevents life from separating us from His love (John 10:27-29; Romans 8:35-39). We are sealed in Him by His Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14).

 

As a child of God, Christ is in us and we are the temple of His Holy Spirit (Galatians 2:20; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20). There is no need for us to belittle our self or to believe these negative lies.

 

God cares about our heartaches and He bears our burdens as we share them with Him (1 Peter 5:7). He helps us in all of our troubles (Psalm 46:1). We go to God with every distress and He keeps our tears in His bottle to revenge in His way and timing (Psalm 56:8).

 

We can pray in our own words about the real issues which affect our life. Our needs, feelings, wounds and failings are His concern too. We can trust Him to meet all of our needs as we make His Kingdom our priority in this life (Matthew 6:33).

 

Prayer:

Father God, You are our God, and You save us and preserve our life as we trust in You (Psalm 86:2).  You already know the end of time from the beginning; and Your purpose will stand through it all as You carry out Your pleasure (Isaiah 46:10). As we read accounts of Your goodness throughout Your Word, it builds our faith. We sing joyfully of Your righteous choices in the affairs of our world.

 

You are compassionate and gracious, a good, good God; and we are loved by You. You are slow to anger and great in loving kindness and You never send judgment without first sending ample warning and time to repent. You are good to all; and we see Your tender mercies through Your works in times past, as well as today (Psalm 145:7-9).

 

Thought for the Day:

God is the Lord of hosts and is exalted in all the earth, our God who is holy in all of His righteous decisions; and when we pass from this life to Heaven, we go immediately into the presence of God.

– Isaiah 5:16

 

 

Trusting in God’ Word

We can trust in God’s Living Word – sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12). Symbolism in the Bible speaks to us about the truth of His Word and the perfect timing of God’s plan for all of mankind.

For instance, Jesus – our perfect sacrificial Lamb – was crucified on the 14th day of the first month of the Jewish year (1 Corinthians 5:7). That was no accident.

This is the exact day and time that the Passover lambs are slain as a memorial of the Jew’s deliverance from the death angel while in Egypt.

Christ’s sacrifice makes us fully acceptable and totally pleasing to God by washing away our sins and giving us Christ’s righteousness. His Word gives us faith to believe in Him.

The Word informs us that God’s Spirit renews our mind and character, establishing in us the fruit of His Spirit and the character of Christ (Galatians 5:22-23; 2 Peter 1:3-10). Seeing our identity in Christ improves our self-image and deepens our union with Him.

Christ in us makes us the light of the world, a city high on a mountain top, which is impossible to hide (Matthew 5:14). However, this also means that any sin in our life is instantly visible and damages our witness for Christ.

Our words and actions affect our testimony either positively or negatively. That is why we are exhorted to keep our self unspotted by the world, and God’s Word helps us to do this (James 1:27).

God’s Word also makes us realize that Satan only has power over us if we give him something to devour (1 Peter 5:8). If we submit to God and resist the devil, he has to flee from us (James 4:7).

Trusting in God’s Word gives us peace of mind, the security of faith, and hope for tomorrow. His precepts and prophesies give us solid ground on which to stand in this world of shifting sand.

Prayer:
Father God, life on this earth is scary and unpredictable, debilitating and demoralizing, full of pain and suffering. If we had to live without You and Your Word, our hearts would fail us for fear (Luke 21:26). Yet, trusting in Your Word gives us strength within, which permeates all of our decisions and fuels all of our actions.

As we walk in Your Spirit through every moment of every day, there is no guesswork to consider, no mistakes to reap from and no mishaps for which You have not already prepared us. Thank You for not leaving us on earth without Your Word to comfort and encourage us.

Thought for the Day:
Criticizing the Word of God is human arrogance at its worst; only the wise will believe in His Word and trust in its insights. – 1 Corinthians 1:21; Romans 10:17

The Faith of the Son of God

How can we live by the faith of the Son of God (Galatians 2:20)? First and foremost, we live by the mercy and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ and His provision of regeneration and His resurrection life in us (2 John 1:3; Titus 3:5; Philippians 3:11).

Faith has nothing to do with our hopes or claiming God’s Word for things we want. It has everything to do with Christ who abides within us. Faith only comes to us by hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17).

If we did not have the faith of Christ within us, we could not have faith in Christ and His redemptive work for us on Calvary’s cross (Galatians 2:16; Matthew 1:21; Hebrews 10:1-14). As Christ is formed in us, our humanity decreases.

We live in Christ, just as Christ also lives in us (Galatians 2:20; Colossians 1:27). We also live in God’s righteousness, not by keeping rules and regulations, but by the faith of Christ which gives it all to us (Romans 3:21-22; Philippians 3:7-9).

Christ becomes our whole life (Colossians 3:4). We receive the promises of God by Christ’s faith within us, not by mustering up our faith by human effort (Hebrews 10:5-14; Galatians 3:22-26).

Keeping God’s law through our self-effort is also useless, and Jesus showed us this truth (Romans 10:4). God works the faith of Christ into our life by His Spirit (Ephesians 1:19-20, 2:8-9; Colossians 1:12).

Through Christ in us, we are adopted sons of the living God, heir with Christ and we are given the right to call God our “Abba Father” (Galatians 3:26, 4:4-7). We can come boldly to His throne (Ephesians 3:12).

We receive peace with God through the atonement of Christ on Calvary’s cross (Romans 4:25, 5:1-12, 18). He is the only Mediator between us and God (Ephesians 1:12). The faith of Christ gives us a firm foundation (Acts 3:16).

Salvation gives us the treasure of Christ in our mortal body (Colossians 2:3). Once we recognize that we are truly crucified with Christ, then Christ is fully formed in us and manifests through our mortal body (2 Corinthians 4:7; Galatians 4:19).

Prayer:
Father God, as You form Christ in us, His faith rests in us as well. The more we come to know Him, the more we walk in His faith (John 17:3). As we come to know Christ more, we also come to know Your ways and purpose for our life.

The faith of Christ in us is the evidence of the things we hope for, but which we cannot yet see (Hebrews 11:1). Abiding in Christ is the only way we walk in Your power (John 16:24). Remind us not to “name it and claim it” for our own carnal purposes; but to ask and seek only for Your Kingdom.

Thought for the Day:
We live in the faith of the Son of God, which Jesus both conceives and brings to fruitfulness in us. – Hebrews 12:2

God Takes Care of Us

Although times of quiet fellowship with our Father are necessary in order to increase our intimacy with Him, we do not need a quiet place in order to have companionship with Him or to hear His voice. He lives within us and He will never remove His presence from us (Hebrews 13:5; Colossians 1:27).

We have access to God’s ear anytime day or night (Ephesians 3:2; Hebrews 4:16). Our human reasoning and fears are the only issues, which can prevent us from walking in God’s Spirit. As we learn to respond to His still, small voice within, we will walk in His wisdom and anointing throughout our day. God transforms us into His Saints by the sanctifying work of His Spirit in our soul (1 Corinthians 6:11).

God’s Word is alive (Hebrews 4:12; John 1:1). Every concept in the Bible is an illustration of the nature and character of God. The more time we spend reading the scripture, the more wisdom we acquire for living, and the more we understand God’s ways. We also realize that God does not pick superstars for His Saints, but faulty, weak and humble people who are prepared to do His will (1 Corinthians 1:18-31).

If we have an earthly necessity, God will supply it as we seek His Kingdom and wait on His perfect timing (Matthew 6:25-33). As we take our needs to Him in prayer, He brings people into our life who can supply what we require. He will also lead us to the mate of His choosing and direct us to the employment, which He pre-arranged for us (Ephesians 2:10).

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for residing within each of Your Saints. Teach us to follow Your Spirit every day (Galatians 5:16-25). Give us a hunger for Your Word, so that we can learn to trust You with our life as the Saints of old did. Their lives are an example to us of Your love, provision and discipline. Remind us to budget our income, starting with giving a tithe to You of the first fruits of our labor (Malachi 3:10). Through Christ, we continually offer the sacrifice of praise to You with heart-felt words filled with thanksgiving for all that You did and continue to do for us (Hebrews 13:15).

Thought for the Day:
Each new morning is a chance to glorify God with our life; every evening is an opportunity to thank Him for His daily provision and to cast our worries and concerns on Him, because He truly cares for us. – 1 Peter 5:7

Surrendering to God’s Love

A pure heart is the key to knowing God (Matthew 5:8). His love overwhelms us with its joy and peace. His perfect love slowly, but surely, casts out all of our fears (1 John 4:18). When we trust in Christ and keep God’s Word, we become His dwelling place (John 14:23). He fills us through all of our being with all of His fullness (Ephesians 3:19).

As the Temple of the Holy Spirit, we experience more and more intimacy with the Trinity (1 Corinthians 3:16). The outer court of the temple is our body, the inner court is our soul and the Most Holy place is our spirit, where the presence of God dwells and fills our soul and body. As we present our body to God, as a living sacrifice, we die to our self and the destructive lusts of life (Romans 12:1).

God’s Spirit fills our soul with all of the characteristics of faith, hope and love. These are the greatest traits a person can possess (1 Corinthians 13:13). The more we walk in obedience to the directives of God’s Spirit, the more our faith increases. Our obedience to Biblical standards comes as we grow in love for God (John 14:15). Then, our love and faith increase our hope in God.

God’s love is wider, deeper and higher than any human emotion or any created thing (Ephesians 3:18; Romans 8:31-39). God’s proven love for us, over the years of our relationship with Him, helps us to have more love for one another (John 13:34). Surrendering to God’s love opens doors for us that we can only dream about, and brings fulfillment to our life in this sin-cursed world.

Prayer:
Father God, faith, hope and love are intertwined throughout our entire personality and relationship with You. They affect our lifestyle, and are the foundation of every other fruit of Your Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). Teach us to surrender to Your love, and to allow Your light to shine through us, so that men will see our good works and give You the glory (Matthew 5:16). Perfect Your love in us and help us to bring You glory with our life (1 John 2:5).

Thought for the Day:
God is love and love is of God; everyone who loves is born again of the Spirit of God and knows God. – 1 John 1:7-8; Luke 10:27

More Valuable than Fine Gold

God never changes, and His Word is consistent as well (1 Samuel 15:29; 1 John 2:7; Psalm 55:19; Malachi 3:6). Hiding God’s Word in our mind and seeking Him with our whole heart prevents us from sinning against Him. His statutes are more valuable to us than fine gold. We delight in His ways and give testimony to His provision in our life (Psalm 119:9-116). His Word is eternal and gives us life (Psalm 119:160).

The Old and New Testament are equally important (2 Peter 3:15-16). The still, small voice of God directs our daily activity as we bathe in His Word and seek His face (Isaiah 30:21). If we are Born Again, we do not practice a lifestyle of sin (1 John 3:4-9; Proverbs 3:11-18). Yet, if we refuse to surrender our life to God, and we continue to practice sin, we condemn our self to eternal destruction (John 3:18; 1 Corinthians 11:27-32).

We can trust that God will give us relief in our days of trouble, until He raptures us, or we pass from this sin-cursed world (Psalm 94:10-13). When we live within God’s precepts, we enjoy a good conscience and a peaceful life (Psalm 119:7). If we teach our children to live according to God’s Word, they have a better chance of remaining on the path of purity and blessings.

God’s Spirit helps us to recall the scriptures, which we hide in our heart, and He leads us into His holy truth (John 14:26, 16:13; Psalm 119:11). He enables us to act upon what we learn, rather than being perpetual students and never walking in His ways (James 1:22-25). The Spirit gives us wisdom from God’s inspired Word, as we regard His instruction and walk in His ways (Proverbs 20:32-36, James 1:5-8).

Prayer:
Father God, You bless those who refrain from the worldly paths of life, which lead to unrighteousness. You consecrate those who do not join in with those who have a penchant for mocking You and Your children (Psalm 1:1-2). Thank You for drawing us by Your Spirit and never letting us walk away from Your eternal love. We treasure the fine gold of Your Word, we enjoy spending time listening to Your voice and we depend upon the leading of Your Spirit with each new day.

Thought for the Day:
When we sink our roots deeper in the water of God’s Word, we will live blessed, fruitful and prosperous lives. – Psalm 1:3

Feasting on God’s Word

I have spent the last few months gardening in containers, which are spaced throughout my tiny outside flower garden. Some plants did better than the others. My tomatoes flourished and are still producing juicy, rich tomatoes. The peppers did well and are still sparsely bearing fruit. However, the okra, squash, green beans, celery and onions all failed to generate any usable fruit.

This reminds me of Jesus’ parable concerning the four types of soil: some seed fell upon the path, others among the thorns, many within the rocks and then just a few on the good soil. If the ground is hard, thorny or rocky, there is no room for the roots. It is only in the garden of prepared soil that a plant can take hold and grow to full maturity.

Similarly, our spiritual food is found in the rich depths of the Word of God. The only way to withstand the winds of adversity or the scorching trials and temptation we encounter in this life is to have our roots sunk deeply into a spiritually fertile environment. Jesus said that we will know His disciples by their fruit.

If His disciples are to produce fruit, they need good, rich, tilled, spiritually fertilized soil. As we receive God’s Word with conviction and repentance, we are ready to receive the proper nourishment. We feast on God’s Word, reading it every day to prepare the soil, so that we will bloom where God plants us.

Many of today’s churches are barren wastelands with nothing spiritually nutritious to offer the Believer. They focus on providing glitz and glitter to attract people, and then they supply only spiritual junk food, rather than wholesome nourishment. However, God is still raising up an army of teachers with every generation – those people who faithfully sow the seeds of the truth of God’s Word.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us to feast on Your Word throughout the day. We eat three physical meals a day, and we need at least that many spiritual meals in order to have a healthy spirit and an intimate relationship with You. Provide us with teachers who seek You in prayer before they share Your Word. Lead us to a caring and loving fellowship of Believers. Even in these end times, please keep a remnant of spiritual teachers, preaching Your truth on which we can feast, Biblical principles, which enable us to bear much fruit.

Thought for the Day:
A lifetime commitment to feast on God’s Word gives us the spiritual strength to minister for Him in every area in which He calls us.
– Ephesians 2:10

Daily Quiet Time

The Word of God is alive and powerful. It sharpens our spiritual wisdom and power (Hebrews 4:12). It teaches us about God and His principles; and gives us the history of Jesus’ life before, during and after He lived on the earth. God’s Word increases our faith as it helps us to walk in righteousness and gives us comfort, joy and peace.

As we read God’s Word, His eternal rest envelops our life from the inside out. Our thoughts, words and deeds line up with His precepts. We walk in the Spirit and obey His directives. Our soul conforms to the image of Christ from one stage of purity to the next (2 Corinthians 3:18). We find favor with God (Luke 1:30, 2:52) and friendship with Jesus as He fills our soul with His presence (John 15:15).

We learn from God’s Word that Jesus took the condemnation for our sins and suffered the penalty for them on the cross (Romans 8:1, 34). In turn, He endowed us with His righteousness (2 Corinthians 5:21). Our soul no longer longs to wallow in the mire of sin; but it joyfully bathes in God’s Word and His presence, which make us clean and new (Ephesians 5:26; 1 John 1:9).

God’s Word convicts us when we stray from His straight and narrow path of righteousness (Matthew 7:13-14). It teaches us that we no longer live with the weight of shame (Isaiah 54:4), but we are free in Christ to live a holy life (Galatians 5:1). As the Bible renews our mind, we are able to discern God’s will and to walk worthy of His calling on our life (Romans 12:2; 1 Thessalonians 2:12).

Prayer:
Father God, Your Word answers the question of the origin of mankind, and had scientific knowledge, which precluded anything science discovered until more modern times (Genesis 1; Isaiah 40:22). Many archeological discoveries confirm Your Word, and not one of them contradicts or denies its Truth. Help us to hold up the standard of You Word in our daily life, so that others will see our faithfulness to You and be drawn to Your loving heart (Matthew 5:16).
Thought for the Day:
When we consider the marvels of God’s heavens and the work of His creation, which He ordained; why would He even bother with mankind at all and deign to care for our every need?
– Psalm 8:3-4; 1 Peter 5:7

Internal Investigation

Most people fly through life without any consideration of what is affecting their body, thoughts and feelings. One way to change this negligent behavior is to pay closer attention to them. If we write down the thoughts occupying our mind, the pains in our body and any negative emotions we experience, they reveal secrets to us.

How does your body feel? What is your soul experiencing? What is your spiritual temperature, hot or cold or…lukewarm? (Revelation 3:16) Performing a thorough internal investigation of our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual state permits us to pray about what to do about them.

Negative emotions are always a signal that something deeper is the culprit. Our physical health even affects our thoughts and emotions, and vice versa. When we analyze the conversations going on in our head among our various ego states, then we can decide what is bothering us and hear the Holy Spirit’s direction on what to do to resolve the problems.

We have the choice to play the role of victim and to concede to our spiritual, physical or emotional ailments; to fight how we feel; to ignore the red flags raised in our soul; or to follow the advice of the Serenity Prayer and change or surrender to God the issues distressing us.

There is no way to change another person’s mind or actions without his or her consent; so, prayer and God’s Word allow us to gain God’s wisdom and perspective on our concerns. This is the only way to survive in this world. If God does not show us how to change our circumstances, then we ask Him to help us; and He always does.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us that as we put our cares in Your capable hands, that You will deal with them or show us what to do about them, because You truly care about us (1 Peter 5:7). You give us Your joy as our strength, even in the most negative of circumstances. Some issues are our responsibility, and some are beyond our control. We praise You for, in and through every aspect of our life. Thank You for showering us with Your serenity and joy, and for working out everything for our good (Romans 8:28).

Thought for the Day:
Changing our focus about our issues will bring us unimaginable and glorious freedom from our circumstances, even if they never change; as well as joy in spite of them.

A New Life in Christ

In this world, people are very touchy about what we say to them. They think that we are trying to proselytize them, if we even mention anything about God or Christ. We are simply living out who we are, and they accuse us of judging them. Of course, if they would join us, they would understand that Jesus is not our hobby or our crutch. Christ is our very life (Colossians 3:4).

We are not trying to impose our beliefs on anyone. We are just living out the truth of God’s Word. We do not condemn their behavior or their person, but offer them the opportunity to trust Christ and to enjoy the wondrous life He provides for His children (Ephesians 4:13). When we repent and believe in Christ (Mark 1:15), we no longer live as part of this world, even though we still live in it (John 17:16).

We no longer attempt to earn His acceptance by our performance to His standards. We are already accepted in His beloved family, by faith and not by works (Ephesians 1:6, 2:8-10). God placed the weight of the vilest sin upon His own shoulders and He paid our penalty for us. We accept Christ’s atoning work for our salvation, and then choose to live in total surrender to God’s will.

Jesus freed us from deprivation, degradation and devastation in this life. He allows us to walk in a new life in Him (Romans 6:4). His anointing in us and through us breaks the yoke of bondage to sin and deception (Isaiah 10:27). His Spirit enables us to obey God’s will, by living in and through us (Galatians 2:20). Let us seek His direction for our life and not allow earthly concerns to sway us from His ways (Luke 9:57-62, 14:26-33).

Prayer:
Father God, true surrender to You always supercedes our natural devotion to job, family or friends. We forsake all for you (Luke 14:33). We know without a doubt that You will meet the needs of our family and friends as we focus on Your will for our life. Keep us from failing to totally surrender to You, and enable us to experience the fullness of Your love for us.

Thought for the Day:
God listens to and understands our prayers and knows exactly how to answer them.