Set Apart for God

Without God’s Spirit within, we do not belong to Christ or His family (Romans 8:9). God’s Spirit us makes us His children. We no longer live under the dominion of the flesh, the world or the devil, and we are not our own.

God owns our time, energy and resources (1 Corinthians 6:19). We are set apart for God. Though we live on this earth, we no longer have anything in common with sinners or the world (Psalm 4:3; 2 Corinthians 6:16).

If we continue to offer our self as slaves to sin, it leads to death; if we obey the dictates of holiness, we are part of God’s holy temple and He dwells in us by His Spirit (Romans 6:16; 1 Corinthians 3:16-18).

We are more concerned with spiritual aspects in our life than carnal ones. We have a new heavenly name (Revelation 2:17). Do you know the meaning of your earthly name? ( http://www.ohbabynames.com )

I like my name, Kathleen Anne. It means: pure one, innocent, God’s favor and grace. Someone with this name is usually dependable, solid, practical, hard-working, industrious, studious, conservative, spiritual, wise, peculiar, intuitive, imaginative, philosophical and solitary. This fits me to a “T”.

As a child, I yearned to be a good girl, so my parents would love me. I even wished on the first star every night that I would be a good girl, so I could be cherished and accepted.

At 18, I realized that that no one is ever good (Romans 7:18-25), and that I could not do enough good to be valued and approved. That is when I turned to Jesus Christ as my Savior. He loves me unconditionally (1 John 4:16).

God takes up residence in our spirit. He abides in His children and walks with us. He is our God and we are His people (2 Corinthians 6:16). We live as the church of the living God, and are the pillar and foundation of His truth (1 Timothy 3:15).

Prayer:

Father God, You accept us as part of Your beloved family (Ephesians 1:5-7). Our spirit, once dead in Adam’s sin, was Born Again by Your Spirit, and You came to live in us for the rest of our life and throughout eternity (Romans 8:10; Galatians 5:15-25).

Thank You for building us into Your house, as we firmly hold to our confidence and hope in Your glory. Christ is the faithful caretaker of Your House (Hebrews 3:6) and we realize the privilege, which You afford us, to allow us to take a part in all of Your plans.

Thought for the Day:

Anyone who leaves their sinful lifestyle, and believes that Jesus in God who came in human flesh as Emmanuel, will have a new name written down in Heaven. – 1 John 4:4

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Wait on the Lord

There is a fallacy in the teaching of the modern church, which states that God can only use us, if we are already moving. If we read God’s Word and the biographies of great men and women of God, this is not the case.

Contemporary teachers say that only as we do God’s work can we discern His will. However, the truth is that God can only use someone who is spending time on their knees in prayer (Isaiah 55:3).

If we make our own plans and goals, and pursue our own dreams, then we repeatedly walk outside of God’s will. If we attempt to meet every need in every person’s life, we often thwart God’s plans in their life.

However, as we wait on the Lord, He will always hear us and respond (Psalm 40:1; John 16:24; Ephesians 3:20). He gives us courage and the strength we need to face the trials ahead of us (Psalm 27:14). We find our rest and hope only in God (Psalm 62:5).

We do not wait on the Lord by filling the minutes of our life with stressful activity and busy work. This distracts us from lingering in His presence and hearing from Him with our whole being (Psalm 130:5).

We do not even need to defend our self, when we are harmed or wronged. As we wait on the Lord, He avenges us (Proverbs 20:22). God’s wisdom deals with the situation better than our human efforts ever could

It may take time to hear from God. We may wait for days, months or years to discern His direction and will for a certain situation (Jeremiah 42:7). If we rush ahead of God, we will undoubtedly fail.

Once we pray and hear from God’s Spirit on the course of action, which He plans for us to take, then we can start moving in the direction in which He is leading us.

Prayer:
Father God, it is so hard for us to wait. We get so nervous and anxious when we wait in line or for some appointment at an office. In this modern era, we are constantly on our phone, checking messages, texting or listening to the news. We fail to make time to quiet our soul, enter into our spirit and hear from You. You desire to bring us into a deeper union with You, but this only comes as we wait on You.

Remind us that You love to spend time with us. You even enjoy long bouts of companionable silence with us. You delight in our praises (Psalm 147:1), and You rejoice over us with singing (Zephaniah 3:17). Help us to walk in Your Spirit and to wait on Your direction for each moment of our day.

Thought for the Day:
The Lord is good to those who hope in Him and seek His will and guidance in everything we think, say and do. – Lamentations 3:25

Why Be Born Again?

From the moment of our birth, we are a living body and a never-dying soul – our mind, will and emotions; but our spirit is dead in Adam’s sin (1 Thessalonians 5:23; Genesis 2:7; Luke 16:19-31; Ephesians 2:1).

Once we come to Christ, in humble repentance of our sins, we receive His salvation, and our spirit is Born Again (Romans 8:16). In Christ, we are body, soul and spirit (Job 32:8; 1 Thessalonians 5:23).

God’s Spirit abides in our spirit and we have an authentic life in Christ. Our renewed spirit is swept clean of Satanic influence by Christ’s redemption (Matthew 12:38-45).

God’s Holy Spirit moves into our rebirthed spirit to occupy our body, sanctify our soul and fill our spirit with the presence of Christ in us (John 17:17; Romans 8:10; Galatians 2:20).

We are eternally joined to the Lord as one Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:17). God’s Spirit continually abides in our human spirit and perfects our soul in holiness (Proverbs 20:27).

Our body is now the temple of God’s Spirit and we continually commune with God in our spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20; John 14:23; 1 John 1:3). We live, move and have our entire being in Christ (Acts 17:28).

Most people function from the soul – our thoughts, decisions and emotions. However, God desires that we live in and walk by His Spirit (Romans 8:4-6; Galatians 5:16).

This prevents us from acting on carnal impulses, which might filter through our soul. We do not make our own plans, envision our own dreams or list our own goals.

God is Spirit and desires that we worship Him in Spirit and in truth (John 6:63, 4:24). God’s Spirit abides in our spirit and we have no life except in Christ.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us not to attempt to make our own plans for our life, nor attempt to understand life apart from You; but simply to listen to and obey the direction of Your Spirit, who gives us wisdom and guidance one moment at a time (Job 32:8).

Corporately, we function as the Body of Christ; living stones, which You fit together into Your temple (1 Peter 2:4-6; 1 Corinthians 12:27; Ephesians 2:21-22). Thank You for our sanctification through Christ and for joining us together into His Body.

Thought for the Day:
God calls us to abide entirely in our spirit, where His Spirit directs us as we live one moment at a time.

Waiting for the Next Shoe to Drop

Living in this world apart from Christ is wearisome at best. There is always something negative happening to us in some way or another: financial, physical, relational, mental, emotional, etc. We struggle from day to day and almost never awaken without some trepidation over what will happen to us next. Trouble even seems to happen in “threes.” We are always waiting for the next shoe to drop.

We try to climb the corporate ladder in order to provide our family with as much security as we can. We compromise our quality family time in order to work overtime to bring home more money. We often work two or three jobs in order to give our children more than we had when we were growing up. We fall into the trap of buying them the latest toy on the market at inflated prices.

This schedule produces even more health, mental, emotional and relational problems. Some of us even work our self into an early grave. We resemble the hamster on the little metal wheel, going round and round, but never really getting anywhere. We amass material possessions, but they keep breaking down or coming out with an updated model, so that we feel the need to get a new one.

When we come to Christ and entirely surrender to Him, we begin living in His perfect plan for our life. We no longer fear the next shoe dropping, because it usually ends up being a glass slipper with King Jesus using the entire event to provide us with a special place in His Kingdom along with miraculous blessings through every negative event (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11; Ephesians 2:19).

Prayer:
Father God, the life You give to us in Christ supplies us with joy and peace, which transcends all human reason (Philippians 4:7). We are blessed when we trust in You, so we place our confidence in You. You plant us like a tree by Your streams of living water, and our spirit has constant nourishment. We do not fear whatever life throws at us, and we flourish no matter what happens to us (Jeremiah 17:7-8). You put Your plans in our heart and bring them to fruition, as we walk in Your Spirit (Psalm 20:4; Galatians 5:15-26). You sustain us, bless us and shine Your favor on us. You are always gracious to us and You keep Your eye on us, so that we walk in Your peace (Numbers 6:24-26).

Thought for the Day:
In Christ, we no longer fear trials or difficulties because we know they hold the seed for a miracle, which will surely happen.

The Blessings of God’s Law

God did not give Moses the Law in order to restrict and burden the people with too many rules to keep. He gave the Law as wisdom and enlightenment of how we can live a healthy life in body, soul and spirit. Our Heavenly Father developed the Law in order to protect us from our self and from people who desire to perpetuate evil on others. The Law also leads us to our need for Christ (Galatians 3:24-26).

As we read His Word and meditate on His Law, God uses these words to caution and instruct us during our daily life. This keeps us from breaking the laws of our nation and ending up in jail, it stops us from contracting illnesses from other people, it prevents us from getting enslaved by addictions, it averts disasters in our personal relationships, etc.

God will circumvent His law in certain cases when He divinely intervenes in the circumstances of our life. For instance, if two cars are heading toward one another on a collision course, God can send His angels to prevent a wreck. We usually reap what we sow in life. Although because of God’s mercy and grace, He often protects us from our own, or someone else’s choices (Galatians 6:7; Isaiah 63:7-9).

In addition to His Word, God also uses His Spirit to speak to His Saints and to direct our choices (Proverbs 3:5-6). However, if we are not committing our way to the Lord and walking in His Spirit, then we will often harvest the results of our humanistic decisions. As we walk in God’s will instead of our own, we are filled with peace and joy, and our life is much more fulfilled.

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for Your Law, which gives us the wisdom to live productive and blessed lives. You do not want us to make our plans and ask You to bless them. Instead, You want us to hear from You and to accomplish the works You created us to do (Ephesians 2:10). In order to hear from You, we need to quiet our body, ignore the thoughts and emotions in our soul, and focus on Your still, small voice communicating with us through our spirit. Show us Your ways, and teach us Your truths as we wait on You all through the day (Psalm 25:4-5; 27:11; 86:11).

Thought for the Day:
There is no conflict between the law and promises of God; the law shows that we are all controlled by sin, but those who believe in Christ will receive God’s promises. – Galatians 3:21

Not Limiting God

Believers are actually foreigners here on this earth, because this is not our permanent home (John 17:16-18). We are camping out in this tent of flesh, until God calls us home (2 Corinthians 5:1). Our eternal life starts at Salvation, because it is simply an intimate relationship with God and with Jesus, whom He sent to restore us to Himself (John 17:3).

Satan no longer has dominion over us due to Jesus defeating Him and sin and death at His resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:57). God redeemed us through Christ and He purifies our life through sanctification (Titus 2:14; Galatians 3:13; Psalm 66:10). The only limits placed on God are those we impose on Him by our unbelief, because with God all things are possible, if we only believe (Luke 1:37).

In the Christian walk, we surrender our life, goals and plans to God’s will for us. We do not make plans and ask God to bless them, because this limits God and what He wants to accomplish through us. God does not want us to work for Him. He gives us the opportunity to give Him control over our life, so that Christ can live in us and work through us (Galatians 2:20: Colossians 3:3).

Jesus does this through His Holy Spirit, whom we receive at salvation. God’s Spirit dwells in us and fills us with His wisdom and power (Romans 8:9; Acts 1:8). We take our focus off the things in this life, because we realize that our citizenship is actually in Heaven (Ephesians 2:19; Philippians 3:19-21). This allows us the privilege of dwelling with God for eternity as His adopted children (Ephesians 1:5).

Prayer:
Father God, we long for the day in which we can live under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, with the government on His shoulders (Isaiah 9:6; Hebrews 11:13-16). Thank You for using creation to preach the gospel to anyone willing to see Your truth (Romans 1:20). In fact, the rocks will cry out if we fail to tell the world of Your love (Luke 19:40). Remind us to faithfully share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with anyone willing to listen. We thank You for redeeming us, for freeing us from the bondage of Satan, death and sin, and for making us part of Your family of Saints. We look forward to You living in us as Your Body for as many years as You have us on this earth; and then living with You, and knowing You even more intimately as the Bride of Christ throughout eternity.

Thought for the Day:
God makes us a holy city and sets us on a hill, so that the whole world can see Him in us (Matthew 5:14-16). We do not belong in this world; we are simply passing through.

We Are All Winners

We Are All Winners

We are given every opportunity as we grow up from childhood to compete with others in athletics, games, grades, hobbies and even dating. We covet the first place award, and we are so disappointed when we achieve anything less. This drive to reach perfection will drive us into an early grave. It makes us think that we can control our life and the outcome of every endeavor.

We soon learn, through a series of hard knocks, that we cannot control everything. Rather than give us relief, we allow this fact to demean us in our own eyes. We see others who always win; therefore, we must be less in every way than they are. Satan makes sure that we do not recognize that there are many others who are not in first place either.

There can only be one first place winner, and everyone else is second rate at best. Therefore, rather than allowing Satan to accuse us with this fact, allow it to be a comfort, realizing that most people do not achieve first place, but we are all winners if we are IN CHRIST. This way we can rejoice with people who do win, and comfort those who do not.

We have no reason to deride our self or to feel belittled in any way, because even the winners will lose sometimes. They cannot win at everything they try. The real goal is not to win, but to do our best. If you did your best, then no one, not even your self, can expect anything more from you than your best. It is only when we do not do our best that we deserve to come in second best.

John warns us about the boastful pride of life and points out that this does not come from God, but from the philosophy of the world (1 John 2:16). Satan is the god of this world, and he thinks that he owns the kingdoms of this world. The truth is that God gave the government of the earth to mankind, and Adam relinquished his position by believing Satan’s lie.

We do this same thing every day. We believe Satan’s lies as truth and we discount the Word of God. In truth, King Jesus now has all power and authority both in heaven and on earth. He lives within us and we abide in Him as He abides in us. All the power of the Godhead dwells inside of our spirit; and we can tap into it and share it with the world around us.

Prayer:
Father God, open the eyes of our heart and let us see You. You are high and lifted up and the earth is simply Your footstool (Isaiah 66:1). Teach us that there is nothing in this world that is more valuable than our relationship with You. Remind us that as King’s kids, we are all winners because of what our brother Jesus did for us on Calvary’s cross (Matthew 4:10).

Thought for the Day:
Never think that you can handle life on your own; seek God in all of your circumstances, plans, goals and decisions. – Proverbs 3:5-6