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, a call for repentance as well as exhortation at times he expresses. Paul’s sincere intent was to bring them closer to the Lord. The Church is supposed to cultivate a passion for living for the Lord! The Church was meant to stand for righteousness and be the 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. God really does know where we are in our walk with Him.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 in the 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’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.
We can go boldly before the throne of Grace! If you have not already, start from this day forward living a life of worship. I assure you, you will not only feel better and become healthier, but you will see more clearly! “Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the Word of God. On the contrary by setting forth the Truth plainly we commend ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the GOSPEL of the glory of Christ who is the image of God. For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ, as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus; sake……….” II Corinthians 4:1-5
When you are faced with the cares, ills, grief’s, trials and concerns of life know that God sees you as a treasure. He loves us so much that He sent Jesus to redeem us from the power of sin. This is why we need Him as Lord and Savior! Allow Him His place in your life! God is the same God yesterday, today and for evermore through everlasting. Intimacy with Him will help you to know that whenever; “We are hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed, we are perplexed, but not in despair, persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed-always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body…”
You never have to loose heart with the Lord. Examine yourself to see whether you are in the faith? Ask Him to fill you with His presence each day and remain focused. God wants to perfect us! Simply meaning He wants to mature us and complete us! God wants you to experience His peace that surpasses the understanding of man. God is willing, ready and able to walk with you 24/7. Intimacy will help you to know that the Lord knows and can see the things you can’t see. To know He knows and will reveal all and everything you need to know in order to live and worship Him each and every day yields security. Intimacy with God should be your desired destination. Now step out on faith and really begin to put your hope and trust in Him! “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you…………” Everyday; To GOD be the GLORY!
Growing and maturing beyond resentment!
When do you know that you have been delivered?
When you receive something that was mailed or sent to you; you “get it.”
Many week after week, month after month and yes sometimes year after years seek deliverance from a situation or… Break the cycle! God wants you to be free. But not to be free to continue in sin. Sin separates you from God. Don’t let what has happened keep you apart from God. Readily repent of any unconfessed sin and accept God’s forgiveness. What happened was beyond your control… Whoever or what ever hurt you or whoever you hurt cannot be undone. But you can move forward starting today! Allow time to release you from the trauma of the incident or situation by embracing the fact that God loves you and wants you to walk in the Path of Righteousness. Embrace the TRUTH of HIS WORD and the cleansing POWER of HIS WORD!
“All have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of GOD.” We ALL forever need Jesus as Lord and Savior!
Therefore when you understand the situation that has been bogging you down clearly, you also “get it!” You can then move forward and take control rather than let it take control of you. You must come out of denial and acknowledge that it occurred. Now you have decided to move forward but you will not allow it to consume your attention anymore. You will let your mind reflect on the cleansing Power of the WORD and on the HOLY SPIRIT’S POWER to transport you to move to higher ground. Spiritual cleansing is welcomed and it is here you build new memories that transcend what has been. You make way for more of GOD’S LOVE! Whenever the unpleasant memory or pain of it resurfaces you pray & “FOCUS” your attention elsewhere. You do not go into denial but embrace The Joy that comes from having the Lord in your life and walking in your growing “self-control.”
The Lord wants to Lighten your load. If you continue to carry the heavy burden it is an indication that you have not released it to Him. Each time it surfaces give it less time. If necessary time how long you will ponder upon it. Then switch to something else. Know that you have actually taken control of it by releasing it to the Lord and now you are all the wiser because of the experience. You know where you do not want to go; and its not backward!
You can choose to become whole! Depression wants to consume your today and rob you of JOY! Don’t blame others when you allow it to steal today’s JOY. See it for what it is. Sometimes you may have to grieve momentarily to validate your feelings. But you will less and less allow your emotions to get the best of you. It is important to remember that depression surfaces when you allow your unresolved anger to turn inward. Resentment means to feel again. Instead of letting go you hold on to the hurt and pain which fuels unhealthy emotions and holds you captive. Understanding what is gong on helps you to “Break Free!”
You no longer will allow the resentment to hinder you from moving forward to becoming a “better you!” You refuse to get stuck! Time is precious and you do not want to spend too much of it in regrets. Tomorrow is not promised so waste less todays. You can now see the experience as having gained some deeper insight because of that particular “Life Lesson.” You do not always need to explain why, because your understanding has matured and your healthy self-esteem has begun to flourish since you take responsibility for your own emotional responses. You do not let unpleasant what has been overtake what you have begun to build anew.
You are moving towards and choosing to live to please God and your confidence in Him is now growing as well. Always remember everywhere you are God is! Make it a goal to let no one come between you and the Lord. Invite the Lord into whatever is going on in you are around you. Learn for yourself what Ephesians 6 says about spiritual warfare. Hold it dear to your heart not just to quote but to embrace its POWER! Get your Spiritual Armor on. Remember HIS WORD is necessary Spiritual Food for your soul!
Yes, you can, Believe & say; “I CAN DO ALL things through CHRIST who strengthens me!” Philippians 4
Yes, You can move forward. Some unconsciously choose to stay “stuck.” Some simply don’t care either way they have grown so accustomed to anxiety. It has become and unhealthy “insecurity blanket!” Rather than let the resentment go they may elect to anesthetize themselves with drugs, alcohol, smoking, promiscuity, gossip, over or under eating or some other reckless behavior or distraction. This unhealthy behavior will only lead to further disappointment and possibly more addictions rather than freedom. Abusive outbursts and out of control undisciplined behavior and resentment is the unhealthy response rather than deal with the inner pain. You can break the cycle. But it takes work & dedication!
Know that GOD wants you to be Happy. He wants you to experience the Fruit of His Spirit. See Galatians 5. Jesus overcame sin in the flesh for us! We are not to make anyone else responsible for our happiness. Being happy is each individual’s own personal responsibility. As a believer God’s Holy Spirit is always there to help us at all times. Sin is what separates us from God! We must humbly submit and be willing to repent of any sin. Then we can keep moving forward to wholeness! THANK GOD for your DELIVERANCE!
Do you desire to walk in integrity? Do you desire to be whole? Do you really know that there is absolutely nothing in life that God is not aware of? “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” God in His infinite wisdom knew from the very beginning of time that we would have to endure many situations, trials, sicknesses, grief and yes difficult people. His Word tells us that He knew us before the foundation of the world. God has given us so many examples to remind us daily who He is. You see “The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament display His handiwork!” So why is it that so many elect to walk contrary to His Word?
You see many do not simply understand that God really has provided everything that we need in order to live and properly function in this world. God has given us the Bible that contains 66 books which have been divinely inspired. He sent His Son to purchase with His life; a plan of salvation for us! It is through His plan of salvation we access His overflowing abundance. It is through Him we are given the opportunity to walk in integrity.
Walking in integrity provides you with a sense of wholeness. It gives you an assurance to know when you are walking with the Lord your steps are ordered. This does not mean that bad things will not happen. I assure you they will. But if you are quietly still you will be able to recognize the author of its origin. You will be able to soar above your situation and rest in the arms of an all powerful and mighty God. You see God is awesome and He is mighty in battle.
Life today is very complex. The world is full of people who subscribe to a multiplicity of belief systems. Many simply have no moral or ethical barometer to determine what is right or wrong. Many live in lifestyles entrenched in a multiplicity of addictive behaviors. You also have those who do not really believe in God but they attempt to live life by doing good things. Then you have another group that is just mentally insane! On the other hand you have many who profess to be believers that opt to employ a distorted fragmented partially clad truth system. That is really not truth at all. Then you have those who know without a doubt they are children of God. They realize that they live in the world but they know that they are not of the world. So therefore we have global conflict.
What are you saying? As a child of God you realize that you live in the world. But on a spiritual level you know that you must not conform to its belief system. You withdraw on your Faith account. You beseech God for direction. You do not walk in the counsel of ungodly people. How do I do this? You must learn to walk in integrity. You must pray that the Lord illuminates your understanding to help you see your path forward. You seek solace in the scriptures for further guidance. You accept the truth even when it is painful. You lay aside the weights that so easily make an attempt to hinder you walking in the Light of God’s Word. Daniel’s life displays an excellent example of integrity. His peers were intimidated by his character. For this they plotted against him. Yet, Daniel remained faithful to Godly principles. God took care of Daniel. Walking in integrity causes one to walk against the grain. You see the Truth is always the pathway to God!
We who are Christians must seek to resolve our earthly challenges in a spiritual way. This does not mean to adopt some fairytale never never land faulty belief system. Neither does it mean I can do anything, say anything or live any way and God will just have to forgive me mentality. After all we are not under the law we are under grace. It means to responsively take personal responsibility for your actions!
There will be consequences for behavior! Don’t t use or manipulate others who are weak and are ignorant to God’s Way of living in order to get your way! Integrity will help you walk in meekness. Meekness is power under control! The world system is not the system that God wants His children to operate within. The law is for the unlawful. But if you know the truth it does not matter. Many choose evil over what is right! You know that whatever trumped up charges someone tries to infer against you they will simply have no weight. Just remember Daniel! Obedience to God is vitally important for the believer. You must choose to walk in integrity!
Walking in integrity is not an easy task. You see it also means to stand for what is right in the eyes of God. You may have to go some places and be some places you would rather not be; but only for a season. Just know God walks with you wherever you go! But you must be certain you have not crossed your will with His! You abandon the need to manipulate the situation. Integrity does not have to fight its way into anything. Grace which is a by product will sustain you. You instead elect to pray and seek God’s guidance. It is through this guidance you can obtain the spiritual, physical and emotional energy to endure. To soar above your circumstances. This will give you the spiritual clarity to operate in spite of! Your faith will assure you God will eventually pull down any strongholds! By faith you know the Holy Spirit will illuminate the darkness that tries to perpetrate a fraudulent simulated light.
It is very difficult to properly relate to someone who lacks integrity. They quite often subscribe to the idea that they can do whatever is necessary to get what they want. They have a very difficult time dealing with anyone who does not agree with them. They often resort to fragmenting the truth to solicit support of those who are partially informed. You do not have to resort to their tactics! Do not be dismayed when they hurl insults. Just know that they are coming from a place of insecurity. A child of God must “walk by faith”. This means you have to keep walking in the Light even when you are not sure how things will turn out. But through faith you know God will work it out for your good! That you must focus on Him when those who walked with you at one time walk no more. You see the narrow road to God is not full of travelers. But it is the path that leads you over through and beyond the wide road that leads to destruction. The faith that God has instilled in you as His child will daily illuminate your path. Diligently study His Word! It will give you healthy realistic boundaries. Integrity will assist you. It will provide an invisible shield to insulate you from the claws of the many wolves that adorn sheep clothing!
Whenever you are in doubt of direction seek Godly direction. Often a simple whispered prayer will suffice. Because God really does know where you are, what you have done and better yet what you are going to do. Please do not subscribe to the counsel of the ungodly. Beware of those who talk right and walk left. Who use the grace of God as a license to sin! Who indulge in unspeakable behavior! Who live to satisfy the flesh and have an insatiable desire to star in an imitation spiritual spotlight. You see with God there is absolutely nothing that is hidden! Therefore you realize that there is no need for an audience when you know that you have God’s attention 24/7. To much is given much is required! You can then walk humbly in His Light because you know that “Greater is He that is in you than He that is in the world”! Know there can be no true peace and contentment where truth is not welcomed. God is the Spirit of TRUTH! But you can share with anyone who asks “This joy that I have the world did not give it to me.” Neither can the world take it away! Do you really want to be made whole? Begin today to walk in integrity! TO GOD BE THE GLORY!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
DeBorrah K. Ogans is a Marriage Educator, licensed Christian Counselor, Life Coach and ordained Minister. She is certified through the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling in Creation Therapy and holds a Master’s Degree in Biblical Clinical Counseling. She is the author of a pre-marital guide “How Do I Love Thee: Things You Need To Know Before You Say I Do,” and “Holy Matrimony: Now That You’re Married”. DeBorrah has written extensively and has a plethora of columns and commentaries on life subjects that are widely published.