Manifestation of God

Most of humanity does not know Jesus as the Christ, nor do they care at all about Godly principles. Hypocrisy in the lives of so called Christians exacerbates this problem.

 

If unbelievers see no distinction in their daily walk with that of a professing Believer, this disillusions them. They want nothing to do with Christ or with us.

 

We have a problem with our connection to the Vine (John 15:5). We may even have a false hope of Heaven, because we never truly repented or made Jesus the Lord of our life.

 

If, however, we are grafted into the Vine, their reason for rejecting His truth may be that we are hiding His light within us and they cannot see it (Matthew 5:15-16).

 

Once we surrender our identity over to the Ruler of the universe, God makes a huge difference in our habits, language, personality and interests.

 

When we fully submit to God for Him to use as He pleases (Isaiah 29:16), our life takes on the character of Christ. This is when people see us as authentic Christians. We are a manifestation of God on the earth.

 

We have God’s peace in trouble, His perseverance in trials, His love for our persecutors and His joy during periods of grief.

 

They see us exhibiting patience in trying times, using self-control when others give in to debauchery, displaying meekness rather than having a haughty attitude, relating to others with kindness and basing our life and decisions on faith in our faithful God.

 

We lay down our preferences and care about the needs of others over our own agenda, without compromising who we are in Christ.

 

Others see truth and reality in our lives. We are capable of this behavior, not because we are exemplary human beings, but because of God’s Holy Spirit within us (Galatians 5:16:25).

 

This is when other people want for themselves what we have within us.

 

Prayer:

Father God, Jesus prayed that no one would snatch us out of Your hand. You are greater than all, and we are perfectly safe in Your everlasting arms (John 10:28-29). Fill us completely full of Your Spirit and keep us as the apple of Your eye (Ephesians 3:16-19; Psalm 17:8).

 

Draw us close to You and never let us go. Your unfailing love is our priceless treasure and we run to the refuge of the shadow of Your wings (Psalm 36:7). When we draw near to You, and resist Satan’s efforts to sidetrack us, he has to flee from Your presence within us.

 

Thought for the Day:

The Holy Spirit is our source of power; and we can ask Him to manifest Himself in and through us all the days of our life; so that others see Christ in us.

 

 

 

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Disposable People – Part 1 – Those We Should Protect

There is a lack of commitment, appreciation and selflessness in our culture today. We treat people like a sack of trash and deposit them out on the curb when they no longer meet our needs.

No one is immune to divorce in this modern, disposable society. People want a “do-over.” They discard a mate as easily as an old pair of shoes.

I am blown away by the phrases associated with divorce nowadays. “We have a stale marriage”, “We hit a dead end”, “I am not in love with you anymore”, “I see no option for us, but divorce”, “We have grown apart”, “God wants me to be happy”, “I am not attracted to you now”, “You are too needy and I can’t deal with it.”

These are just a few excuses, which I have heard as a Pastor’s wife. You may know others. You may have even heard a few of them yourself.

People trade in their spouse like a used car. When the new model comes along, they have no qualms about making the switch.

They hope that the grass may be greener, or that maybe this new person will fulfill them or make them feel complete. They are willing to take the chance, excited about the possibilities.

Whenever two people marry they may eventually get comfortable, let their guard down and take each other for granted.

They get irritated with each other more often. Resentment grows and even anger. Old wounds from their childhood drive wedges between them unless they get healing for their past.

They may decide they would prefer to live alone than with their mate whom they do not understand and who no longer makes them happy.

They may feel an animal attraction when they meet someone new and wonder about the potential. In today’s society of easy-divorce, the sanctity of marriage is part of the past; but divorce is not part of God’s plan for us (Malachi 2:16).

Prayer:
Father God, You created each one of us by knitting us together in our mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13-14). Even now, You know the exact number of hairs on our head (Matthew 10:30). Help us to cherish our intimacy with You and with one another too, and to recognize the beauty and strengths in each other.

Teach us to nurture one another and to appreciate the efforts we make to love each other to the best of our ability. Remind us that we are all wounded individuals attempting to survive in this painful world, and do not allow us to further wound each other by disposing of one another when our carnal strength fails us.

Remind to love one another with Your Agape love. Help us to rekindle the flames of human love by doing special random acts of kindness for one another, by dwelling with each other with understanding and by meeting each other’s needs above our own.

Thought for the Day:
There are no disposable people. – Malachi 2:16

Spiritual Pursuits

Old Testament Saints were given seasons of the presence of God’s Spirit within them; but in this new dispensation of time, we enjoy the presence of God dwelling within His temple within us every moment of our life (Romans 10:9).

God’s Spirit brings to our cognizant thoughts an increasing awareness of His wisdom, direction, presence and truth (Colossians 1:27; Galatians 2:20). This consciousness affects our thoughts, words, attitude, behavior and feelings.

We often drain the resources of our body and soul by over-extending our time and commitments beyond what God’s Spirit leads us to do. This weariness causes us to neglect our times of prayer, Bible study and worship with other Saints.

We are so caught up in the affairs of this world that we forget to communicate with God until we fall exhausted into bed. We take God for granted, trusting that He is always there and will bail us out of any negative issues.

Yet, He often allows us to boil in the stew of our own making. The fountains of Living Water within our spirit dry up and we ignore our thirsty soul, getting more parched with each passing moment (John 4:14). We stubbornly continue to pursue worldly gain and advantage.

Thankfully, God loves us enough to discipline us, in order to teach us lessons and to cause us to walk only in His Spirit and not to rely on our human reasoning (Proverbs 3:5-6).

It is important for us to understand that the most vital aspect of our life is spiritual advancement. Our spirit longs for a deeper relationship with God. Prayer, Bible study and Christian fellowship are the key vehicles for our spiritual maturity.

No amount of worldly gain can satisfy us as much as immersing our self in spiritual pursuits will fulfill us. God created us as spiritual beings and our entire body, soul and spirit long to return to this intimate relationship.

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for wooing us back to Your presence when we wander from Your chosen path for our life (Ephesians 2:10). Help us to remain focused on the pursuit of Your Kingdom rather than building our own kingdom on this earth. We thank You for Your love, kindness, supply, presence and spiritual leading as we progress through each moment of time.

We want nothing more than to know You more deeply and to understand Your ways. We draw all of our strength from Your Spirit within us and we delight to do only Your will with the life You provide for us both now and throughout eternity. We enjoy the intimate fellowship with You, which You provide for us all day long.

Thought for the Day:
Mankind is so convinced of the laws of science that they believe these laws can exist without the Creator of it all; yet, God holds His entire creation of the cosmos together in the span of one of His hands. – Isaiah 40:12

Uncommon Love

Although God causes the sun to rise on the evil as well as the good, and although He waters the land belonging both to the righteous and the unrighteous, it does not mean that God approves of their evil or unrighteous behavior.

If unconverted people would really pay attention, they would recognize that the whole earth is actually full of the lovingkindness of the Lord (Psalm 33:5).

At times, evil people advance in this world quicker than the righteous, which seems totally unfair to us. As humans, we would take a totally different approach. We would zap our enemies and annihilate them.

Yet, God often makes sure that unbelievers experience the same joys and benefits from His love that Believers do. He draws them by His love, just as He drew us by His love, even while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8).

At times, we are frustrated by the sinner’s blindness to the goodness of God, and we lament that they do not praise Him for His love and kindness (Psalm 107:8).

They know about God; yet, most of them reject Him or even accuse Him for everything that goes wrong in their life. Their foolish hearts get darker and darker in the midst of God’s obvious wonders (Romans 1:21).

Nevertheless, God pours out His blessings on the unjust as well as the just (Matthew 5:45). Then, He calls us to mirror His love to our unsaved friends, relatives, associates and neighbors by laying our life down for them (Romans 5:7).

Prayer:
Father God, give us the same mercy and grace toward sinners that You showed to us. Keep us from expressing the frustration we often feel towards their resistance to Your love. Help us not to judge them, but to accept them right where they are; knowing that You will convict them in your timing and way.

Remind us often that we are no better than the sinner, because the only difference is that we are already saved by Your grace. Let us lay down our life for them. Give us the chance to prove to them that our motivation for serving them is nothing more than Your love for them in us.

Thought for the Day:
God desires that we continually pray for the salvation of the sinner; and that we utilize every opportunity to take as many of them to heaven with us as will have the humility to surrender to God’s love.

God is Not Our Co-Pilot

When the phrase, “God is my co-pilot” first hit the scene, it caused us to focus our attention on God being a huge force in our life. The popularity of this phrase grew over the years.

It gave me comfort to think of God next to me, traversing the issues of my life and ready to back me up if necessary. However, something always bothered me when I heard this phrase.

God showed me that He wants more intimacy and control of our life than a co-pilot. He does not want to step in only during an emergency, which we find too challenging.

God wants to reign as Lord and King of our life. He is much better suited to Pilot our life than we could ever hope to be. He knows the end of our human lifespan from the beginning (Isaiah 46:10).

He saw us in our mother’s womb and knit our bones together with His special purpose in mind (Psalm 139:13). He has a unique plan to provide for each one of us.

For instance, God chose to leave out four of my permanent teeth. Then He proved His love for me by allowing those baby teeth to serve me for several decades into my adult life.

He has a perfect will for each life, including yours (Ephesians 2:10). As we totally surrender to His Spirit’s direction for every moment of our day, He guides us from one divine appointment to the next.

God uses us for His glory and blesses us in the process. We help to further His Kingdom on the earth and to contribute to the population of Heaven for eternity.

Complete capitulation to God’s Spirit is our best recourse in life. We never feel concern over the past, or fear of the future or stress in the moment, because we cast all of our worries on our Father God, who cares about us (1 Peter 5:7).

This helps us to lose our temporal mindset and to focus on the eternal instead. Satan’s temptations no longer appeal to us. We rise above the carnal cares of this life, because we trust God to supply all of our needs with His glorious riches (Philippians 4:19).

Prayer:
Father God, as we submit our life to you, there is no event, which will ever occur in our life, that is not already part of Your plan for us. We trust in Your loving kindness, because You have our best interest in Your heart. You weave the moments of our day into a perfect tapestry, which turns the focus away from us and puts it fully on You (Matthew 5:16).

We give You all of the praise and glory for the successes of our life, and we know that You will turn the ashes of our failures and suffering into a beautiful experience in Your time and way (Isaiah 61:3; Ecclesiastes 3:11).

Thought for the Day:
God wants complete control of every area of our life; and once we submit to His will, we find fulfillment, which is better than anything we could ever plan for our self.

The Benefits of God’s Grace

God loves the whole universe, even those who do not believe in Him and those who curse His name (John 3:16). He allows both sinners and Saints to reap the benefits of His love (Jeremiah 12:1; Psalm 37).

God is drawing us all to Himself by sharing blessings to both evil and good people, and by sending refreshing rain to believers and unbelievers alike (Matthew 5:45).

The grace of God benefits everyone ever born. The whole earth overflows with His loving kindness (Psalm 33:5). If only everyone would turn to Him because of His benevolence (Psalm 107:8).

Although everyone ever born initially realizes the goodness of God, even through creation, most people fail to honor Him or feel gratitude, because our foolish heart is clouded by Satan’s lies (Romans 1:20-21)

The human tendency is to credit our good fortune to own efforts or to “fate”, rather than to God. We fail to see the goodness of God in our success. This causes us to condemn our self by our unbelief (John 3:18).

Our futile attempts to find a measure of happiness and success in life are empty prizes. We work throughout our whole lifetime to build our own little kingdom on this earth, only to lose it all in death.

We face eternity without the saving grace of Christ. God’s grace is His undeserved favor shared with every human being ever born. Yet, most people disdain His attempts to save them.

God calls us to a personal relationship with Him. His everlasting arms are open wide, encouraging both the good person and the foulest sinner to abandon their futile lifestyle and to trust Him.

He provides for all of our needs according to His glorious riches (Philippians 4:19; Ephesians 3:16). He shepherds us and keeps us safe (Psalm 23). He longs for our fellowship day and night (Exodus 33:14; 1 John 3:24; Revelation 21:3-4).

Prayer:
Father God, we can never thank You enough for the loving kindness You shower on Your creation (Psalm 145:9). You provide for us and protect us by Your mighty hand (Psalm 139:10). If You were to forget us for one second, destruction would overcome the universe.

Make us ever mindful of Your desire to fellowship with us. Remind us to take time to consult You for Your perfect plans for each moment of our day. Allow us to make a difference in the lives of the people You bring our way. Please come soon and restore Your order to the earth.

Thought for the Day:
God calls us to love all of humanity just as He does, sacrificing as His Spirit directs us for those He brings into our life. – Romans 5:7-8

Worthy of Our Love

Authentic Christians are so in love with God that things in this world lose their appeal. As we contemplate His goodness, the memories warm our heart. We burst out in joyful songs because of His righteous treatment of us. He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and great in loving kindness. He is good to us all and all of His works are full of His tender mercy (Psalm 145:7-9).

God is the Lord of hosts of angels and His magnificence fills our hearts with respect and awe (Isaiah 8:13). As we read about His work through the ages, we realize that His thoughts and methods are much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8-9). Sometimes they do not make sense to our finite, human mind; however, hindsight always gives us a glimpse of His wisdom.

We trust in God’s loyal love and rejoice in the salvation that Christ’s redemption provides for us. We sing of the benevolent and bountiful ways in which He deals with us (Psalm 13:5-6). He hears our prayers and is our shield from danger and our strength to deal with life’s unpleasant experiences. Our heart trusts in His goodness, because of the ways He always works out everything for our good (Psalm 28:6 Romans 8:28).

We cannot help but to rejoice in God’s bountiful provision and give Him continual thanks night and day for all that He does for us (Psalm 28:7). God is high and lofty above the earth and lives in a high and holy place with our Lord Jesus Christ. Our Father inhabits eternity, yet cares enough to revive the spirit of the depressed and to forgive the heart of the contrite (Isaiah 57:15).

Prayer:
Father God, heaven is Your throne and our earth is Your footstool. You made all of these things by Your wisdom, understanding and power, or they would never have come into existence (Jeremiah 10:12, 51:15; Isaiah 66:1-2). You are the one and only, true living god, our eternal King. The earth and nations tremble at Your righteous anger, and many come to You in repentance (Jeremiah 10:10).

Thought for the Day:
God is always nearby and never far from any one of us, even though He fills both the heaven and the earth. – Jeremiah 23:23-24