CHRIST in you the HOPE of GLORY!
There is a marvelous freedom and security we receive as we sincerely learn to trust GOD! No one or nothing can begin to compare to the magnificent difference it makes having the Lord within your life. “Where the Spirit of the Lord is there is liberty!” II Corinthians 3 But we must never abuse that liberty by justifying any wrong behavior in ourselves or others. Jesus Christ died so that we might have life more abundantly. This is inclusive of a rich inner spiritual life. Through His Holy Spirit we have been given the power to overcome sin when we rise above temptation. This is possible when we discipline ourselves to His principles. All who believe in the Lord & accept Jesus Christ into their hearts as Lord & Savior, will eventually defeat death and arise to experience the Eternal Life that awaits us in Heaven!
GOD has a plan and purpose for your life! It is your/our responsibility to seek HIM above all others and everything else. We should desire to KNOW what HIS WILL is for our lives. God wants us to live our lives in Peace. HIS Peace does not mean that we are without difficult situations or conflict. We simply learn to respond differently rather than just react. Our priorities are different from those of the world if not they should be. We should readily repent when convicted or found in error. We instead opt for discipline and elect to live our lives to please God who in any given situation can give us His peace that surpasses the understanding of man. Be thankful and bless His Holy Name!
It is so very important to consistently spend time in the presence of the LORD in HIS WORD! Flood your mind and heart with His precious Word for it is necessary spiritual food to enlighten your soul! It is here you can have a one on one encounter with the Lord and discover Jesus Christ; “The Hope of Glory!”
It is only in the Lord that we can become spiritually whole! This becomes possible when we subscribe to ponder, embrace and daily implement the wisdom from God’s Word because we;
“Seek first the Kingdom of GOD & HIS righteousness and everything else will be added to you…” Matthew 6
“Whatever you do, work at it with your heart, as working to the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance form the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord you are serving… Colossians 3
“Let the PEACE of CHRIST rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to PEACE. And be THANKFUL. Let the WORD of GOD dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to GOD. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the Name of the LORD JESUS, giving THANKS to GOD the FATHER through HIM…” Colossians 3
We can call upon the Lord 24/7! Be encouraged knowing that our Lord is everywhere that you are “…For it is GOD who works in you to will and to act according to HIS GOOD purpose!” Philippians 2
“…To them GOD has chosen to make known among the gentiles the riches of HIS mystery, which Is CHRIST in you, The HOPE of GLORY!!!” Colossians 1
May the Grace, Joy, Hope and Peace of our Lord be multiplied within your heart through Jesus Christ our Lord! Praise be to our GOD, Father & Lord; “The Hope of GLORY!”
CHRIST in you the HOPE of GLORY!
God our Heavenly Father Creator & Maker wants all of us to experience His deep abiding inner peace. This does not mean that we will never have any conflict. Quite the contrary. It means that whenever chaos and mayhem is going on about us we can remain calmly centered in the midst of it. It also means that we remain cognizant as to what is happening all around us. To pray for increased spiritual discernment and insight as well. We are to learn to discipline ourselves to focus upon the Lord instead of whatever the issue at hand might be. We then humbly must yield to His Will & His Way! This in turn will begin assisting the process of lightening our load. By giving the situation over to the LORD we are trusting Him for the outcome. Spiritual healing is an ongoing process. There is always hope when we trust & believe in the Lord!
As we grow in His grace, we meekly proceed with caution when unpleasant situations arise. Not out of fear but by choosing to become disciplined and respond in patience. As we meditate upon His Word and embrace His truth; this also allows the load to begin to shift to Him. We learn how to respond responsively in the moment rather than impulsively react whenever conflict arises. As we yield to Him He molds & shapes us into His image. This is what an intimate relationship with the Lord is really about.
We receive a cavernous insightful perspective in regards to life as we stay connected to the Lord. This is how we blossom spiritually. We begin to daily embrace and be governed by His principles and elect to draw closer to Him. We relinquish wanting to be right just for the sake of being right. We want what the Lord wants for us over our own desires. We want His grace to abound in our lives therefore we submit to the leading of His Holy Spirit. When in question we must wait and “Be Still & Know!” The Lord then begins to multiply within us the Fruit of His Spirit.
Without an ongoing growing intimate personal relationship with the Lord through Jesus Christ, you will miss the true purpose of life & living! You will be towed right along and tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine, belief, concept and custom as well as tend to readily subscribe without question to the many traditions of man. You will also be unconsciously shaped into the ways of this world rather than the character of God. Tradition in itself is not bad, but it should not be used to get you to conform to the desires of man only to label you disobedient when you do not adhere to their way of being… It is so very important to know the Word of God for yourself.
God is Omniscient! There is absolutely nothing that we cannot learn from the Lord as we yield ourselves to Him. He will direct us to the necessary resources to facilitate further spiritual growth. As long as we are on this side of Heaven there is still room for improvement. We are here to grow and live out the principles of God’s Word! When we have learned whatever is necessary to complete this phase of life we begin the transition towards going homeward to meet Him.
Understanding comes from God. He can open our eyes and give us better insight in any and every situation. HIS abiding Holy Spirit awaits to lead us on the path of righteousness on the marvelous journey for truth & eternal life with our Heavenly Father.
God’s Holy Spirit abides within us who believe! Our body becomes the temple where His Holy Spirit the Comforter resides. We must in turn ask to be filled over and over again.
Anorexia and Bulimia are very serious eating disorders that occur when one does not properly relate to food. Eating disorders are serious. They can and do result in physical and emotional turmoil. There are a lot of control issues related to eating disorders. An unbalanced spiritual diet will result in a spiritual eating disorder. If you go without spiritual food; you will lack the proper skills to navigate through the spiritual maze of life. Jesus came to this world to redeem us from the penalty of sin. He overcame sin in the flesh for us. He came so that the world would not be condemned but saved. It is through His love we have obtained grace.
To find out more about your purpose and the plan God has for your life it is important that you explore God’s Word. The Word of God is food for the soul. Have you ever thought about the side effects of a Spiritual eating disorder? When you do not have a consistent healthy spiritual diet it is difficult to comprehend spiritual things. Did you know that you can actually forever be in a learning mode and still not comprehend the spiritual things of God? In fact you will have a tendency to be misled. It is vitally important that you regularly read, study, digest and apply God’s Word in your daily life. You do not want to develop a spiritual eating disorder. It will result in serious spiritual consequences.
In order to grow properly one must consume a nutritious balanced daily diet. It is often said “we are what we eat.” Eating is a natural normal everyday occurrence. Without a proper daily diet one can become malnourished. It is a well known fact that in many third world countries thousands literally starve to death daily due to a lack of a proper balanced diet. It is difficult to reach your full potential when your body does not have its proper nutrients. Food for your body is what gas is to a car. Think about it? How far will your car go without gas? How can you make the journey? Food is fuel for the body. God created a marvelous thing when He created man. We are created in His image.
We are body, mind and soul. God has also provided the necessary resources for us to live healthy lives. In order to grow physically we need food. In order to grow intellectually we need to study and stimulate our brain cells. When we study we assist the building of dendrites. Okay what are dendrites? They are nerve cells that send impulses to the body. Intellectual growth without spiritual development is futile. You will never fully understand life and its true meaning without knowing God. Remember He created us with a soul. Our soul also has needs. We need to spiritually feed our mind and soul with the Word of God. The Word of God is spiritual “bread from heaven”. It is essential to our spiritual growth and development.
Did you know that the Scriptures are considered “The bread of life?” They are essential for the proper growth and spiritual development for the believer. Just as food is necessary for the body; so is God’s Word for our soul. A proper spiritual diet is required if you truly desire to grow spiritually. A constant diet of religious junk food is unhealthy. Yes, it is possible to grow without God’s Word. But, you will not grow spiritually. You will grow carnally. It is even possible to grow religiously. This will cause you to be misled as well. You will be tossed to and fro by the various doctrines of man. Please know growing religiously is not the same thing as growing spiritually.
Many people talk right and walk left. Remember Jim Jones and his followers? If one does not regularly participate in studying and applying the principles of God’s Word to life’s circumstances it is also possible to become stagnated. The Bible clearly tells us that God is a Spirit of Truth. When you know the Truth the Truth will set you free. This type of freedom leads you to be free to become who God wants you to be. It will give you a new lease on life.
Tasting the indescribable fruits of God’s Word is like putting on 3 D glasses. Meaning you will see things on a deeper level. God really is awesome! Spiritual warfare is at hand. Despite everything that goes on there is nothing that happens He is not aware of. Just think about that for a moment. That is really deep. Look around you and see all the things that are going on. The further we move away from God’s principles the worst things get. Many choose to live a life of misery and despair. Life presents many challenges. God intended for His Church to carry on His Son’s mission. He Loved, trained, developed, nurtured and became a living example to His disciples. He even died and rose from the grave so they would see the scriptures being fulfilled. This was the ultimate demonstration of love. Did you know that He and His disciples were persecuted, misunderstood, lied on and mistreated by those He came to help? They even plotted secretly to discredit Jesus in spite of all the good He had done. The Bible tells us there were places He went that due to unbelief His power was not manifested. These are a few of the important facts you will discover when you study the scriptures.
Today we have the Word of God in Book form. His Word is our source of spiritual food. Did you know that there is nothing written in the Bible that is less than 1800 years old? That fact is awesome in itself. The Bible’s Truth will forever be alive. It will and has stood the test of time. In Jesus’ time they did not have the Bible like we do. It had not been compiled into the Biblia 66 books as we have today. God really does supply all our needs. He did not leave us Comfortless. He left us His precious Holy Spirit as our internal Guide that we receive on the profession of our faith. We must daily ask for His infilling presence. We need His Holy Spirit to help us understand His Word. God does not want us to be spiritual anorexics. He wants you to know Him through His Word. How is your spiritual diet? How much time do you spend acknowledging God in your daily life? Do you ask Him to give you your daily bread?
This column is for you if you are reading this. Just take a personal inventory and see if you are really ingesting a balanced spiritual diet. You know and God knows. You should feed yourself spiritually in addition to being fed physically. When you attend a worship service it is the time for you to become spiritually nourished and energized as well. To praise God from whom all blessing flow. God has given many gifts to the Church. The gifts were given to spiritually mature the body of Christ. (See Ephesians.)
When junk food is served in lieu of the Word of God; many become spiritually codependent. This often makes it difficult for them to deal with life’s everyday challenges. When you attend service the pastor, preacher, evangelist, teacher, minister or appointee, are all charged to deliver a message from the Word of God. When one truly lays aside their own agenda this is possible. It is also very good when the messenger let’s the listeners know when they are using illustrations to make a point. This is helpful for those who are not as familiar with scriptures. This time should be consecrated; instead of used to personally say something to someone you do not have enough courage to confront. Only after praying and sincerely meditating on God’s Word this is possible. Some even see this as an opportunity to get someone else to say, what they can not say themselves to someone.
What happens when you eat junk food? The proper delivery of a spiritual message will feed your soul. It will enlighten, convict as well as encourage you to grow spiritually. The Word is like a two edged sword it cuts both ways. There is something for the messenger or deliverer as well as the recipient. God has left no stone unturned to see that His children receive proper spiritual nourishment.
It is an arduous task to deliver God’s Word. But how will you know if something is from God? Good question. This is why you need to study. You need to be like the Bereans in the book of Acts, they knew the Word of God for themselves. This is why it is important that we too develop our personal relationship with Him. A healthy Spiritual diet is one of the most important assets you can acquire. As a Christian it should be a necessary priority. How important did I say spiritual food was? Life can be difficult. A proper balanced spiritual diet will help you weather the tempestuous storms of life. It will give you keen insight. When everyone is saying it’s alright when you know its all wrong, let His Word guide you. God never tells us to support something that is not right. A proper spiritual diet will help you to stand for what’s right when the majority falls for what’s wrong.
A proper spiritual diet will allow the Fruit of God’s Spirit to flourish in your life when spiritual warfare is about you. God keeps His promises. He said He will never leave you nor forsake you. I can bear witness to this He won’t! He said He will supply all of our needs? He will! (This does not mean just getting or having what you want) He said He will be peace in the midst of a storm. He will! His Word tells us that “God is Love” He truly is! Love is a wonderful thing. Having someone to love and knowing others truly love you is a wonderful thing. Many really do not know what Love really is. Love really is a beautiful ever unfolding gift from God. In the midst of trials, tests and wickedness God’s love will be an anchor. But you must always remember that spiritual nourishment is essential. His Word tells us that, “God is Love.”
When you read, study, deliver or share God’s Word please be prayerful. There are so many that have gone shipwrecked. So many casualties due to an unbalanced spiritual diet. Much too much junk food and not enough substance. If I tell you to come to my house for dinner you are expecting a balanced nutritious meal, right? What if I give you a plate of raw carrots? That’s okay if you are a rabbit. You might even think its funny, but, when you get home how do you think you would feel? My point is. As human beings we need more that just carrots. Some foods are a little hard to digest. We need both balanced spiritual and rich nutritious diets for our spiritual and physical growth. God wants us to continuously grow spiritually. “Let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus.” What does that mean? We must learn to embrace the Truth of God’s Word. God wants to be in every area of our everyday lives. He wants us to have a rich full spiritual diet, healthy marriages and sincere loving families.
I want to encourage you to make it a priority to spend some time with God. Really digest His Word. I assure you whatever is going on in your life He already knows. God wants you to live out the promises of His Word. God can and will make a way out of no way. He heals and He delivers according to His Will. Did you know Jesus also used very unconventional methods? The religious establishment was quite often opposed to His methods. What are you saying? God will supply the road, direction, vehicle, people and resources when and if necessary for you to accomplish whatever He wants you to do. All you must do is step out on faith! Do not be surprised when someone does not understand you. Always keep in mind that what matters is that God knows and sees everything. Nothing can come our way unless He allows it. This is why He tells us to do whatever we do as you do it for Him. Remember His Church is supposed to be the pillar of Truth. The enemy is the father of lies. God is awesome. God is a “rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” He is truly worthy of our praise.
Remember it is more important what God knows rather than what others think. Why do you think Jesus spent so much time getting away and spending time with His Father? Jesus remained constantly spiritual nourished. Did you ever think about the fact Jesus could have just said everyone be healed. He could have completely done away with poverty and famines. He had the power to do so. But that was not the plan. He was faithfully obedient. It is important to know that Jesus was terribly misunderstood, called evil and blacklisted too. God also has a remedy in any case. God tells us to be happy when persecuted for righteousness. God really does have everything under His control. Knowing His Word is vitally important for your well being. Jesus really is coming back for His true Church. Some things will just not be understood on this side of Heaven. God will never lead you to do anything that goes against His principles. Really get to know God for yourself. You do intend to spend eternity with Him? This will prevent you from developing a spiritual eating disorder. Allow His Word to be “bread from heaven.” Let Him truly be your Shepherd. His Word has a bountiful table of blessings prepared for our spiritual nourishment.
God will move or take you over any mountains or through the rough terrains of life when and if necessary. Begin to feast on the delicacies of His Blessed Word. This will result in you experiencing the fruit of His Spirit. Just remember you need a balanced spiritual diet to make the journey.
Webster defines discipline as a training that corrects, molds or perfects the mental faculties or moral character. A control gained by enforcing obedience or order. Orderly or prescribed conduct or pattern of behavior. To discipline means to train or develop by instruction and exercise; especially in the area of self control.The development of discipline is essential to our overall personal growth and spiritual maturity.
One of the fruits of the spirit is self control. Due to Adam’s sin mankind has inherited a sin-based nature. The appetite to fulfill the desires of the eyes and the lusts of the flesh is quite often first and foremost. The appetite of each individual varies. Your desire could be overeating or under-eating, alcohol, drugs, immoral sexual behavior, lying, envy, idolatry, covetousness, etc. In order to overcome this proclivity towards sin one must continually learn to surrender their yearnings toward self-gratification. How can we accomplish this? To the believer deliverance from an undisciplined lifestyle is quite attainable. Paul tells us: “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” Philippians 4:19. The key factor in that verse is the strength has to come from the LORD.
God is quite aware of our shortcomings. Our shortcomings are what alerts us to the fact we need something other than ourselves to overcome our human frailties. God has created us for the purpose of fellowship. We must continuously develop a life in accordance with the instructions He has left in His WORD. The first step to accept Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour. “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way the truth and the life: NO man cometh unto the FATHER but by me.” John 14:6. There is no other way to GOD.
Our perspective on life greatly affects how we deal with certain situations. Envision with me if you please a house. Everyday you would pass by this house. After a while you become very familiar with it’s exterior. You then begin to even make assumptions about the house. You eventually come to admire it for it’s surface beauty, but only from an exterior point of view. You’ve seen the front door day after day but you have never stopped and taken the time to knock at the door. You are aware of where the house is; you even think you have a general idea of what it’s like inside. But do you really?
Quite often we develop the same type of relationship with God. We know where His instructions for daily life are found. We have access to the Bible. But how often do we really devote time to actually seek His spiritual direction for our day to day living? We must go beyond the exterior and delve into the WORD and embrace His principles and apply them to our lives consistently. When we embrace His principles we embark upon a life of freedom. This freedom will free you from the appetites of the flesh and the clutches of the world.
When you develop an intimate relationship with Him He begins to fill that deep endless void THAT ONLY HE CAN FILL.The Christian life is not an unattainable idealistic lifestyle. When we begin to walk in the Spirit we can overcome the weaknesses of the flesh. Christians are to live lives that are dependent upon God. It is through this spiritual dependency the strongholds that satan has on your life will begin to dissipate. This spiritual walk includes a life of discipline. Remember it is through discipline we are able to harness and control the lusts of the flesh I mentioned earlier.
Christ lived, suffered, died and arose from the dead for a reason. He sacrificed His life to redeem us from the curse and endowment of Adam’s sin. It is by the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives we can overcome and partake in the victorious life he has prepared for those that truly love Him. “Greater is He that is in you then he that is in the world.” The scripture is not just for memorization to impress others. It is an edible delicacy that will nourish your spirituality and quench your unquenchable thirst as you truly embrace and live out it’s intended principles.
We must seek and learn to discipline our life to His standards. We must begin to relinquish the desire for man’s approval and conditional acceptance. We can never please man. I must warn you! The closer you draw to GOD the less man will understand you. You will be persecuted and greatly misunderstood. Guess what? So was Jesus! He was maligned and accused of many things by those who should have known better. It was those who were thought to be spiritual that treated Him exceedingly wrong.
Man looks from the outside in; this is the opposite of God’s perspective. He looks from the inside out. He knows all about you and I. Our innermost thoughts and desires are fully known by Him. The key to a peaceful and contented life filled with true JOY is available. “GOD is LIGHT, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness (appetites of the flesh) we lie, and do not tell the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is Light, we have fellowship one with another, and the BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST HIS SON CLEANSETH US FROM ALL SIN.” How important is discipline?
It is very important!