Intimacy With God ~ The Desired Destination Part 2

Clouds 5

Paul was concerned because some of the “Church from Chloe’s household” had informed him that there were quarrels among them. Paul realized the need to address the conflict which hindered their spiritual growth. Listen closely to the rebuke. He adamantly expresses the need for a call for genuine repentance, as well as exhortation. Paul’s sincere intent was to bring them closer to the Lord.

The Church is supposed to cultivate a passion for daily living for the Lord! Not just attending worship services. The Church was meant to stand for righteousness and be the Spiritual Light of the world. God uses whomever He pleases to fulfill the mission of His Church. According to the Word; “God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things that are mighty; and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, that no flesh should glory in His presence.” I Corinthians 1; 27-29

Walking with the Lord is not a role to be played but a life to be lived! This is why Paul says “He who glories, let him glory in the Lord.” God is so worthy of all our praise! It is really by and through the power of His Holy Spirit we can attain a deeper ever growing level of intimacy that will enhance your personal walk with Him.

Due to the mindset of many of the Corinthians it was difficult to break the many strongholds. Carnality and spiritual immaturity permeated their atmosphere. Today as well during a service, although emotions and energy may be high it can still be void of spiritual depth. At times the atmosphere is orchestrated to a degree to get the people to react rather than simply naturally respond. God really does know where each of us are in our personal walk with Him.

Paul had to withstand some very severe personal attacks from the Corinthian Church. Their ritualistic traditions often impeded the move of the Holy Spirt. Paul was troubled to the point he had to defend his beliefs. He had no need to manipulate the people. His desire was to appeal to their conscience. He wanted them to experience the genuine abiding peace of the Lord. Although troubled he remained encouraged and thankful for the Lord’s guidance. Despite the persecution he wanted to “…give the light of the knowledge of the Glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” II Corinthians 4

Paul’s concerns have been recorded as a permanent record. In His second letter to the Church in Corinth he continues to relay his sincere concerns to the struggling congregation due to both internal and external problems. This is why Paul’s ongoing desire was for their spiritual growth. Spiritual warfare was all about him. As a rebuttal and deterrent Paul’s credibility was questioned. Yet, Paul did not allow this to sidetrack his assignment. We too must remain focused when spiritual warfare presents itself. God in His own time will bring everything to the light. The victory is truly in sincere praise!

Having intimacy in your relationship with the Lord is one of the most important intangible things that you could possibly possess. God knows our place within the body of His Church. This will help you to know that God is a God of all comforts. That nothing comes your way that He is not aware of. God can, and is truly the only one, “who comforts us in all of our troubles, so that we can comfort those who are in trouble, with the comfort we ourselves have been comforted by God….” II Corinthians 1:4.

Paul helps us to know that despite our efforts we can be greatly misunderstood. Sometimes we have to simply show a contrast. Sometimes we just have to simply remain still… Many look for an outer manifestation of the Spirit. Rather than focus on welcoming the indwelling deep inner presence of the Lord. Paul realizes that there is great need for discipline and self control. “Wherefore, we labour, that, whether present, or absent, we may be accepted of HIM. For we must ALL appear before the judgment seat of CHRIST; that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he has done, GOOD or bad…” II Corinthians 4

Paul’s writing includes significant teaching on a plethora of issues relating to sin and righteousness. Paul addresses the congregation by stating that he was called by the will of God. This in it self caused much resistance. In I Corinthians he dealt with the diversity of sexual sins and what happens when God’s plan for marriage and family are disobeyed see 7:1-40. He addressed the fact how proper worship flows from us by sincerely acknowledging God’s place in our life see 3:16-23. The pure significance of partaking in the Lord’s Supper see 11:17-34. Paul continues in significant detail a discussion on the effectiveness of exercising spiritual gifts as to when and how they should be properly exercised or not? Harmony and order were desired whenever they assembled. Christ really does deserve to always be the “Mainstay” of all our worship!

God has bestowed upon us the blessing of His Holy Spirit to abide within and to assist us in living a life pleasing in His sight. You must ask for this infilling presence daily. I encourage you to take some time to get to really know the Lord intimately. His Word has cleansing power. Repent of any and all sin before it ferments. Commence to really delve deeply into the meat of His Word. We can be sure and confident that God’s Word is infallible. Exercise your faith and entrust your future to the Lord. I declare, no matter what comes your way God will see you through! Christ birth, life, death and resurrection has taken away the veil. Nothing stands between you and God but you and any unconfessed sin. The Word of God is able to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

God is truly faithful! We can always and forever trust GOD and HIS WORD!

See Part 3

Share This:

Perilous Times and Perilous Men with a “reprobate mind.”.

June 26, 2015 was a historic day indeed. Today we believe the Supreme Court got it wrong in its decision to legalize same sex unions in all 50 states. Everyone has an opinion but God’s word is still true. “Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” There are certain things God has cursed, and you can’t bless what God has cursed. Nor can you curse what God has blessed!

“God” is love! There is no way to really love someone without God. We (people) are the temple of God, and God will not dwell in an unclean temple, so love cannot proceed from an unclean temple as well.

“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!

For of this sort are those who creep into households and make captives of gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. Now as Jannes and Jambres resisted Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, disapproved concerning the faith; but they will progress no further, for their folly will be manifest to all, as theirs also was.”

(2 Timothy 3)

“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient” (Romans 1:28)

“They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” (Titus 1:16)

A reprobate mind has finally reached the United States of America Supreme Court. And that’s our “opinion”.

Here’s another opinion about that decision:
http://www.cnn.com/2015/06/26/opinions/connelly-same-sex-marriage-ruling/index.html

Share This:

Living In His Presence


s

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. When God created mankind He intended that our lives were to center around Him. Let’s take a look at a few of the many examples. Before Adam and Eve sinned they lived in God’s welcomed presence. God provided them with everything they needed. Because of their disobedience they had to leave the garden, this was a consequence for their disobedience. They eventually had two sons Cain and Abel. Cain killed his brother Abel because he was jealous that God was pleased with his offering.

Joseph is another example. Joseph had the favor of God despite the ill will his brothers had toward him. They put him in a pit and later sold him as a slave. Joseph was favored again by Potiphar. Potiphar’s wife proceeded to seduce Joseph. Joseph refused yet this incident resulted in him being incarcerated. Joseph again found favor from the head jailer. He was eventually freed and became second in command in the land. Joseph was obedient to God. God provided for Joseph.  When you are obedient to the Lord His Favor will rest upon you.

Moses another example. God spared Moses as a child through Miriam his sister and the pharaoh’s daughter. She raised Moses in the palace as her own son. But later he had to flee after he murdered an Egyptian. He lived with the Midianites for forty years and found favor and a wife named Zipporah. God later called Moses at the age of eighty to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt. Moses took His instructions directly from God. He led millions to the promised land. But was not able to go in himself because he disobeyed God!

Deborah another example was the only female judge out of twelve. Barak was reluctant to go up against Sisera who had 900 iron chariots. Deborah had the favor of God. Together she and Barak successfully conquered. Deborah trusted and obeyed the Lord. Jael, a woman, actually defeated Sisera by nailing a tent peg through His temple.

The Book of Esther presents another example. Haman prepared gallows for Mordecai because he would not bow down to him. Esther and her people were to be murdered as well. The Lord would not allow the king to sleep one night. Instead he read the Chronicles and discovered that Mordecai had been responsible for saving his life. Esther risked her life to inform the king of Haman’s plot against her people. Haman’s plan backfired. He eventually swung in his own gallows. Esther was faithful and obedient, she stood for what was right. Esther lived in the presence of God. God has given us a wealth of examples to encourage us in His Word. He has provided us with story after story of the importance of obedience.

The Bible illustrates the benefits of worship and the importance of living a life daily in His presence. Living in His presence does not mean that life will always go smoothly. You must daily prepare for “spiritual warfare.” Make sure you have personal devotional time each day, and then you will be able to praise Him even in the midst of a storm.  Trust God for He  will see to it that you emerge victoriously!

Moses lived in the presence of the Lord. The Lord allowed Moses to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt. He provided for them during their wilderness experience. In the Book of Numbers when the men of Israel slept with the Midianite women, a plague was brought upon them. God expressly told them not to follow man! God told them there would be a consequence if they obeyed man rather than follow His instructions. It was God who provided for them. He told them “BUT REMEMBER the LORD your GOD, for it is He who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms His COVENANT, which He swore to your forefathers, as it is today!” Always follow GOD regardless of what it looks like.  “Pray without ceasing”  and Praise God all the way through as He keeps you on the “Path of Righteousness!”

When Zimri and Cozbi slept together out of wedlock a spear was driven through both of them and they together died. Joshua and Caleb were two of the twelve spies that were sent out to survey the “Promised Land.” Joshua and Caleb trusted God they obeyed God. They were not threatened by what they discovered. The other tens spies all died because of their unbelief. Because of their doubt and unbelief the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness for forty years. One year for each of the forty days the spies spied out the land. God’s presence was with them on a daily basis. Yet they chose to disobey and “do their own thing.”

The book of Exodus exemplarily depicts and recalls the construction of the Tabernacle. In great detail it presents the multiplicity of tasks, discipline and consecration that went into the planning and actual execution of the Tabernacle. Moses and Aaron and their sons together led the people in consecrated worship. Each was given specific tasks. They were plentifully adorned with elaborate wardrobes and fine linen decorated with gemstones. The Tabernacle was arrayed in the finest of materials and table wares.

They went to a great extent to consecrate the Tabernacle and themselves for worship. Two of Aaron’s disobedient sons were killed because they improperly lit the incense. Never question what GOD has said not to do! Eli the priest raised Samuel the prophet. Yet his sons died because of their disobedience as well. Your position does not stop you  from having the consequences of disobedience.   Consult the Lord  and His Word daily for direction. You will never find an example where God encourages or supports wrong!

God is aware of our motives. He knows what is in hearts. He even tells us “Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.” God’s peace surpasses the understanding of man. Peace is a by product of living and walking in the presence of the Lord. Make it a priority to worship and praise the Lord daily. “God inhabits the praises of His people.”

Why all the biblical stuff? Today God still wants us to worship Him. Today He still wants us to live in His presence. He wants us to be obedient! His covenant is forever! He sent His only begotten Son to live as our example and conquer sin in the flesh for us! He died that sin would no longer reign in the lives, hearts and homes of His children. Yes in today’s present time God still wants us to live in His presence. He does not want us to live controlled by sin. Nor must one faulter when being seduced by addiction and immorality.

We have a Savior to save us from the shackles of sin. When we are tempted; He has provided a way for escape. We do not have to yield to temptation. The Bible clearly tells us that whenever we are tempted “IT IS NOT OF GOD!” Jesus died that we might have a right to the tree of life. Jesus died on the cross and arose with all power. He died that we might overcome the power of sin to reign in our lives. He has graciously provided us with the freedom to choose right or wrong. He has given us His Holy Spirit the Comforter to lead and guide us! He has provided a way back to Him! The Bible is His WORD. Jesus is the WORD made flesh. Jesus is “The Way the Truth and The Life” back to the Father!

There are absolutely no spiritual benefits when one attempts to justify wrong behavior. The Bible tells us that when you hold a lie as truth you are deceived! The carnal mind cannot accept the things of God.  Pray for discernment! It is very important that each one us develop a personal intimate relationship with God. This is crucial because there is much deception and error about us. We must faithfully study, meditate and pray each day. Not certain how to pray? Jesus has provided us with a sample prayer “Give us this day our daily bread….” Prayer is simply honestly communicating with God. Thessalonians tells us to “Pray without ceasing.” Now remember when you pray you must obey!

When I read Exodus I think of the obedience, time and expense that went into building the tabernacle. It also lets me know that when you are obedient there is absolutely no need to worry. Don’t follow the crowd. Seek the Lord above all others and let HIM keep you n the “Narrow Path” that leads to HIM! God is not a man. God does not lie! He has shown us time and time again that He will provide above and beyond whatever it is that we need. If necessary He can even drop food from the sky, water from a rock, provide us a way to escape, dry up a sea, or provide money from the mouth of a fish. You see the Bible is not a book of elaborate fairytales. It is Truth’s History! In the beginning; God created the heavens and the earth. God is sovereign!

There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that God will definitely take care of His children in any and all situations. But He expects us to be obedient to His will and His Way! Guess what? You will not even have to manipulate anyone or anything! Just remember Haman’s gallows. He will give you the desires of your heart if what you want is in His WILL for you! But know there are still brothers like Joseph’s and Abel’s, women like Potiphar’s wife. couples like Zimri and Cozbi, and of course those who plot to derail you like Haman! But Hallelujah anyhow! Keep your focus on God! God has said in His Word, “Ask and it shall be given. Seek and you shall find. Knock and the door will be opened to you.” Oh by the way do not be deceived “if you sow to the flesh you will reap to the flesh.” There are consequences for sin. If you sow to the Spirit you will reap of the Spirit”

There are abundant marvelous  spiritual dividends for obedience! You can rest assured that, GOD CAN OPEN DOORS NO MAN CAN CLOSE!” Start living in His presence. Pray today asking Him “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done….…” Commence to obey and follow Him and you will have peace living in His presence even in the midst of this sinful world! “On earth as it is in heaven..…..” He has shown us and promised He will, definitively “supply ALL of your needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus!” “I have never seen the righteous forsaken nor His seed begging bread!” Blessed Assurance Jesus is mine! Oh! What a fountain of Glory Divine!


Share This:

Grief – (Grieving Is Emotionally Painful) Part 1

Grief

Whenever you or a love one experiences a traumatic situation, significant loss, serious illness or death it is normal to experience grief. There are many other types of losses that occur in life that can result in grief as well. Recovery issues, divorce, financial, relocation, career change, natural disasters as well as a miscarriage or abortion can all trigger one to experience a degree of grief. We are experiencing worldwide a plethora of adverse climatic weather conditions. This has resulted in a multitude of personal loses. Lives, homes, businesses, possessions, and mental wellbeing has been greatly impacted. The initial reaction to any of the above is usually shock accompanied by a feeling of numbness.

Grief can often result in one feeling a deep sense of overwhelming depression, anger, fear, anxiety, hopelessness and or abandonment. It is also possible to ask “why me?” Anger and resentment may result in feelings of ambivalence. Initially the above symptoms are natural. The passing of time is a partial salve that can and will eventually anesthetize your deep pain.

If you are a Christian, finding solace in God’s Word during grief is a great resource to help you maneuver through a plethora of emotions. It is during grief you can actually learn to embrace God’s spiritual comfort. The deep void that one experiences during grief is often unexplainable. So if you don’t feel like talking try spending some quiet time with God. Truly the Lord can help you rise to a level of Joy despite the grief that besets your soul.

As you truly and earnestly seek God who is the ultimate “Comforter” you can experience His abiding presence. If you are a believer you should know that God’s Word is true. Not some of it but all of it. His promise to “never leave us nor forsake us” must be faithfully embraced in your hour of need. Only He can give you; “His Peace that surpasses the understanding of man.”

Grieving is an emotionally painful process. Allowing the one that is grieving to talk freely about how they are feeling is healthy and consoling. Many become depressed and can have a deep sense of guilt. There are two types of guilt; normal and neurotic guilt. Neurotic guilt is based on unrealistic expectations or situations. Helping the one that is grieving to face the reality of loss is helpful. It is healthy to allow them the freedom to talk about their love one. Enabling is never healthy. Allowing them to work through their emotions by being active is a good thing. Timing and sensitivity is key. Taking a walk, run or jogging may even be relaxing and release some inner tension. During an opportune moment try telling them a humorous story or a funny joke can help lift their spirit momentarily.

Encourage them in their walk with the Lord. If they don’t already have a relationship with the Lord seek appropriate moments to introduce them to the Lord. Helping them to freely express their feelings and concerns are healthy. Remember everyone is different. Just because you do not see them crying does not mean they are not grieving. Some people elect to privately grieve. Sometimes just doing nothing momentarily is good. Just being there helps. There are times they prefer to just be alone. Don’t force yourself into their private moments. Check in on them. A good friend will be patient, sensitive, caring and compassionate and understanding at this time. Just knowing you are there for them can be a great sense of comfort.

During the holidays when there are many festive celebrations this can also be a reminder to many of their time of loss. After the holidays pass and all the seasonal excitement has dissipated there may be a resurgence of grief. This too is a natural response. Again try to allow yourself to think of some of the happier times you shared together. Freely cry when necessary yet do not become overwhelmed and allow it to pull you in a deep depression. Reach out to someone you trust when you feel yourself going in a deep dark place. Depression and sickness can be spawned in the midst of grief. Emotional pain when not dealt with properly can trigger physical illness. Where, what and whom you focus on will make a world of difference.

In spite of all the painful things that can happen or has happened in life, there is always something good to think about. God still has you here for a purpose. Some days you might have to take it a moment at a time. Again, please allow yourself to think about some of the cheerful experiences you shared with your love ones. God tells us in Ecclesiastes that there is a time for everything.Suffering is a part of life. Just think if we did not know sorrow how would we know joy?

This may be the last thing you want to hear. But their time on this side of Heaven has expired. Your love one is really in a much better place. They have actually transcended suffering. When you focus on God you can have joy in the midst of your grieving. This is why it is so important to develop an intimate personal relationship with Him. God does not take pleasure in seeing us suffer. He knows the ultimate suffering when He allowed HIS sinless SON CHRIST JESUS to die on the cross for the sins of the world. So yes, cry when sorrow besets your soul. But Look to the Lord the Author & Finisher of your Faith to help you through it. He can help you do what seems impossible.

Grief and sorrow are a result of Adam and Eve’s disobedience. When they disobeyed they chose sin, death and grief as a way of life for mankind. This is why it is important to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. Because of His death and resurrection we now have direct access to the Father.

See Part 2

Share This:

WP Like Button Plugin by Free WordPress Templates