Saturday, June 21, 2014

Giving others the opportunity to know Christ

When sharing with a friend about the Good News of your redemption, healing and new life in Christ, it is perhaps helpful to remember that the final impact on their lives isn't up to you—you are simply communicating what you know and have experienced, and the choice you have made for your life.  We each have to respond the Holy Spirit’s nudge toward Christ on our own.   No one can make that decision for us.  Of course, we still have an obligation to participate in giving others the opportunity to decide... Rom 10:14, "How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?"  (Source: Focus on the Family)

We literally bet our lives on having the right worldview


We all have a worldview which is our way of understanding life- why we are here, our purpose on this planet, where we are ultimately headed.  We derive our very identity from our worldview.  We use our resources and expend our very lives according to what we believe.  This is a serious thing to consider in that we are given only one life to live.   Rick Warren said that we literally bet our lives on having the right worldview.  Ask these questions of yourself:  What worldview drives your life?  From what or from whom are you deriving your identity?  What lifestyle are you living and what purpose in life are you expending your life upon?  Is it noble, lofty and worthy enough for the one precious life you have been given?

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Victorious Living

In Henry Blackerby’s book Experiencing God, he asked the question, “How do you describe your relationship with God?” He gives us a list of possible answers to ponder: Non-existent? Plateaued? In decline? Confused? Exciting? Growing? Transformative? (Fruit of the Spirit-Galatians 5) Victorious? (victorious over the world, flesh and the devil.
Unless the enemy has you totally deceived, you are going to desire the latter answers on this list.   A fundamental fact about a relationship with God that is transformative and victorious living is a function of our yielded-ness to God’s Holy Spirit at work in us.  This is true for all stages of conversion, sanctification and perfection through which the Spirit leads us.  Consider these stages of the Christian Pilgrimage:
o    God through His Holy Spirit call us to Himself through the people and circumstances in our lives.
o    The Holy Spirit convicts us of our rebellion and sin and leads us to repentance and forgiveness.
o    The Holy Spirit quickens in us that Blessed Assurance of new and eternal life with the Father.
o    God's Holy Spirit begins to build in us an intimate relationship with the Father.
o    The Holy Spirit begins to reveal His good and perfect will for our lives.
o    The Holy Spirit steadily changes us and we are sanctified for His purposes and for holy living.
o    God imparts to us "Gifts of the Spirit" for building up the Body of Christ and doing ministry in His name.
o    We know ourselves to be changed and the Fruit of the Spirit (Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) begins to characterize our lives (Gal 5).
o    We are victorious over the world, the flesh and the devil- Christlikeness and union with God are ours forever. 
The question thus becomes- At whatever stage of your life that you find yourself, are you yielded to the Holy Spirit at work in you?  Ask God to fill you to overflowing with His Spirit and lead you out of the muck and mire of this life and into the Victorious Life He has promised to all of us who turn to Him.