The Body of Christ

 

As followers of Jesus Christ, we are no longer individuals floundering around in a sea of disconnected entities searching for selfish desires.  As followers of Jesus Christ, we are children of God and a carefully designed part of the body of Christ.  Our selfish desire has been put aside and our lives now center on loving God and loving our neighbor.  We are not instructed to walk this path alone – we are taught to seek out our specific mission as an integral part of the body of Christ.  “For just as we have many parts in one body and all the body’s parts do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually parts of one another.”  (Romans 12:4-5)  In order to be a fully functioning body, believers need to interact with each other on a regular basis.  Fellowship with other believers is essential for a fully functioning body of Christ.

Connected to Other Believers

Christians need other Christians.  We are nothing if we are not connected together.  Don’t let this world trick you into believing isolation is good for some people – isolation is not good for any follower of Jesus Christ.  Your contribution is needed and you are in need of the contribution of others.  “But now there are many parts, but one body. And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; or again, the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.”  (1 Corinthians 12:20-21)  We each have our specific talents and resources that provide the bodily functions that others are unable to supply.  When we stay connected to other believers, our lives are expanded in ways we would be unable to achieve on our own.  When we stay connected to other believers, we have the opportunity to help others with our unique gifts.

Sharing God’s Love

The body of Christ is a tool used by God to share his love throughout the world.  When any member of the body disconnects, the flow of love is disrupted until that connection is reestablished.  The more that believers are connected together, the more opportunity we have to spread God’s love in all directions.   “The whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.”  (Ephesians 4:16)  When we are disconnected, not only are we unable to share love with others, but we also limit the amount of love that is able to flow in our direction as well.  Maintaining a fully functional body of Christ is essential to the well-being of all believers.

Serving God

Of course, there is more to maintaining your connection to the body of Christ than simply attending church on Sunday.  In fact, some who attend church are still not connected.  Our body of Christ connection is totally dependent on our willingness to serve God by serving others.  When we reach out to fellow believers with love, we are energizing our body of Christ connection.  This kind of connection often starts at home where we have a greater opportunity for intimate interaction.  Our close friends and acquaintances at work or school are likely next on our list for special consideration.  Just as we all are uniquely gifted, we all have individualized body of Christ connections.  Precisely when and where we connect is unimportant.  Our central focus has to be on becoming one with Christ by participating fully and completely in the body of Christ.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Relying on God

Relying on God

 

We all have a tendency to want to do things on our own.  It feels good to be in control and guide any circumstance in the direction we think is best.  But taking charge of any situation without first consulting with God is an enormous mistake.  Without God’s guidance, we will likely make a number of wrong turns before reaching our ultimate destination – if we get there at all.  We can save ourselves time, emotional pain, and frustration if we reach out to God in prayer in everything we do.  “Rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer.”  (Romans 12:12)  When we place our faith in God’s counsel, acknowledging how he has pointed the way for us through difficult times, and devote ourselves to seeking his advice in all matters, there’s no limit to what we can accomplish.

Seek the Wisdom of God

It’s important when making any decision that we seek a path that will bring glory to God and benefit others.  When we are devoted to prayer, every aspect of our lives is first presented to God for advice.  “That you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding.”  (Colossians 1:9)  Even simple things that we are confident we can handle should be prayed over to make certain we are not missing anything God wants us to focus on.  Doing things the way we’ve always done it may not be God’s will.  When we seek God’s wisdom and understanding before acting, we can be certain we are traveling down the right road.

Come to God in Prayer

Of course, when we come to God in prayer we have to bring a pure heart.  We should start by making sure nothing is in the way of hearing His advice.  We should be ready to give ourselves over to His direction, no matter what that may entail.  We should ask God directly for anything we might need.  We should consider the Word of God as the foundation of our understanding.  We should bring every ounce of faith and trust in God to our prayers.  Then we should be ready to wait as long as it takes for the answer.  And once we receive God’s clear direction, we should be ready and completely willing to follow His guidance as prescribed.

Give it All to God

Being devoted to prayer brings peace and confidence in all that we do; however, we should not limit our prayers to our own personal needs.  God wants us to be constantly connected to him in prayer every step of the way, but he is even more receptive when we pray for others.  We not only rely on God for guidance, we also rely on God to support those who have a special place in our hearts.  God wants to hear our prayers for family, friends, and all those that we perceive are in need of His care.  “Finally, brothers and sisters, pray for us that the word of the Lord will spread rapidly and be glorified, just as it was also with you.”  (2 Thessalonians 3:1)  It is the collective prayers of the family of God that help the lost feel His presence.  We can’t forget our ongoing mission to share the Gospel with the world.  Our prayers should reflect our desire for all to come to faith, and for every aspect of our lives to be guided by our loving Father in heaven.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

More Like Jesus

 

More Like Jesus

 

God uses difficult times to move us closer to him, to build character, to demonstrate our need for a Savior, and to teach us something we are missing.  If our lives were always perfectly blissful, we would have no way to grow in knowledge and wisdom; we would be stuck in the same place day after day.  Difficult times are a tool used by God to help us become more like Jesus.

Difficult Lessons

We all face difficult times in our lives.  When we face difficult times, it’s hard to see beyond the pain and confusion that clouds our vision.  Often we tend to ask God why he has allowed us to fall into a pit of despair.  That’s an understandable response to adversity; however, that’s not what God wants from us.  In difficult times, God wants us to focus on the lessons being taught.  God doesn’t want us to run away from our problems; he wants us to embrace them so that we can uncover the valuable truth learned from first-hand experience.

Trust God

When we face difficult times, our first course of action should be to turn to God.  We need to turn our back on adversity and keep our eyes on the Lord.  God is with us.  When we follow His direction rather than the dark alleys of adversity, we will always find our way back into the light of truth.  “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you, I will also help you, I will also uphold you with My righteous right hand.”  (Isaiah 41:10)  Above all else, we need to trust God.  Difficult times are a reminder that we are nothing without God.  Difficult times are an opportunity to see God working in our lives.

Share God’s Love

God uses adversity to shape our lives.  The ultimate goal is for us to become more like Jesus.  When we look back on difficult times that we were able to overcome through God’s intervention, it becomes clear that God’s purpose was to make us stronger.  Our struggle becomes a strength that we can share with others.  Our victory over adversity develops our Jesus like spirit – our never ending well of faith in God’s presence in our lives.  It is God’s love that carries us through difficult times and when we keep our hearts open to him throughout the experience, we strengthen our ability to share that love with others.

Seek the Kingdom of God

This period of our lives is all about developing the wisdom and knowledge needed for our eternal existence with Jesus.  We will experience many difficult times in this life in order to prepare our spirits for what is to come.  We can be absolutely certain all of our current adversity is a small price to pay for the kingdom of God that is on the way.  “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”  (Romans 8:18)  Of course, God doesn’t want us to be miserable in this life; he wants us to find joy in the challenge of overcoming this world on our way to the ultimate victory.

Keep Your Eyes on Jesus

Difficult times give us the opportunity to see God working in our lives in a powerful way.  Rather than thinking of adversity as a dark road of despair, consider it to be a beneficial challenge that will serve as a chance to move closer to God.  “Consider it all joy, my brothers and sisters, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”  (James 1:2-4)   Only Jesus is “perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”  We become more like Jesus when we endure the challenges of this life resting comfortably in the knowledge that God is in complete control.  Keep your heart filled with love, keep your eyes on Jesus, stand firm in your faith, and you will eventually find your way beyond any challenge.  This is your ultimate path to victory.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Your Spiritual Connection to Jesus

 

 

Your Spiritual Connection to Jesus

 

I’ve been walking with Lord for four decades now and I have to admit I still have a lot of work to do.  My ultimate goal is to live my life for Jesus, walking in His footsteps, following His teaching, and helping others to do the same.  Unfortunately, there are many distractions in my life that can leave me disconnected from Jesus in some way.  Moments of anger, selfishness, greed, lust, and impatience occasionally push their way into my life in an attempt to move me off in the wrong direction.  These negative impulses are hard to avoid.  The world we live in is far from perfect and we all have to do battle with the forces of evil that have infiltrated many aspects of our lives.  Our only hope is our connection to Jesus.  “I am the vine, you are the branches; the one who remains in Me, and I in him bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”  (John 15:5)  Jesus is the source of everything good in our lives.

We Have an Enemy

As followers of Jesus, we have to be aware of the manipulation of the devil.  We have the power to outsmart and overcome the devil if we maintain our connection to Jesus; however, the devil never stops trying to make us stumble.  The Bible tells us that the devil is working with an army of evil spirits that can influence individuals and turn them into disrupters of our faith.  “But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons.”  (1 Timothy 4:1)  This battle between good and evil will continue until the return of Jesus.  For this reason, we have to stay on our toes and be ready to counter-punch Satan’s army every time an attack is sent our way.  No one is immune from these attempts to disconnect us from Jesus.  Every aspect of our lives is a potential target, and we have to seek the wisdom of the Holy Spirit before making any decisions that are not clearly following the teachings of Jesus.

Three Ways to Connect

Fortunately, there are many ways for us to connect with Jesus.  First and foremost, is the Bible.  We all came to know Jesus through the pages of the Bible.  It doesn’t matter if you read the Bible on your own, or you were taught the truth found in the Bible by a trusted teacher; in both cases it is the Bible that connects you to Jesus.  We keep that connection alive by continuing to read the Bible or by continuing to seek out guidance from providers of Biblical truth.  Secondly, we connect with Jesus by following His instruction.  When we serve God by serving others, as Jesus taught, we are instantly energized by the power of love that is the driving force behind all of His instruction.  And finally, we are connected to Jesus when we share in fellowship with other believers.  Like batteries connected together to increase their power, believers connected together generate great benefits for each other.  It doesn’t matter if we connect one-on-one, in small groups, or in an entire congregation at Sunday worship.  When believers are together physically and spiritually, there is always a direct connection to Jesus.

Doing God’s Work

The more connections we make with Jesus, the more opportunity we have to help others connect as well.  God created us to connect with Jesus and follow His teaching.  “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”  (Ephesians 2:10)  The more we connect with Jesus the less opportunity the devil and his evil spirits will have to invade our lives.  When we are busy doing God’s work, there will be no time for negativity; all those useless emotions will be overwhelmed by the love that fills our hearts through our connection to Jesus.  Following the teachings of Jesus is how we walk with Jesus and there can be no greater connection than having him by our side every step of the way.

Stay Connected

We have to be diligent in our lives to avoid the devil’s distractions.  The stress of work, school, raising a family, or trying to keep our head above water financially, can easily disrupt our connection to Jesus.  We have to keep this in mind as we go about our day and be aware of any potential distractions.  When any negative emotion starts to erupt, seek wisdom from the Holy Spirit to guide you back toward Jesus.  Whenever you have a chance, seek guidance from the Bible.  Serve God by serving others at every opportunity.  Set aside time for fellowship with other believers.  These are the simple to follow steps needed to maintain our spiritual connection to Jesus.  When you keep your life focused on accomplishing this goal, you will be blessed.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

God’s Compassion, Love, and Mercy

 

 

God’s Compassion, Love, and Mercy

 

There is absolutely nothing we can do in our lives to deserve the salvation God has provided.  We are completely unworthy of the free gift of eternal life and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  Our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is all that is required to receive these awesome gifts which are granted by God because of his never-ending love.  Our salvation is a gift of God’s love – not a reward for anything we have done.  “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”  (Ephesians 2:8-9)  God’s gift of salvation is a demonstration of his compassion, love, and mercy and our response to this gift should be to return that compassion, love, and mercy to all those we come into contact with in our lives.

Bring Glory to God

When we reflect God’s compassion, love, and mercy back to the world, we bring Glory to God.  It’s important that we understand that our salvation was not intended to be for our personal benefit – salvation is intended to be a resource we share with others.  Keep in mind, everything we have in this world is a gift from God and every gift from God should be shared with others.  When we keep God’s gifts for ourselves, we are essentially stealing.  “The one who steals must no longer steal; but rather he must labor, producing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with the one who has need.”  (Ephesians 4:28)  Each day there are those around us who have needs we can fulfill.  When we share our finances, talents, and time with others, we bring Glory to God as we demonstrate his compassion, love, and mercy.

Serve God by Serving Others

As followers of Jesus Christ we are to follow his example and serve God by serving others.  Jesus Christ, the Son of God, gave us everything so that we might receive the extraordinary gift of salvation.  “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, so that you through His poverty might become rich.”  (2 Corinthians 8:9)  Our salvation is an enormous blessing!  God poured his love out on us so that we might share that love with all those who come into our lives.  That’s how we honor God.  When we follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we are on a path to be blessed by God so that we will be able to bless others.

Working Together

Salvation through Jesus Christ is not a reward; it is a commission to join God in sharing his compassion, love, and mercy around the world.  We each have our own sphere of influence that God has placed in our lives.  We each have the precise gifts from God needed to share his love with those around us.  This doesn’t mean that we can solve all the problems of all those in need in our lives.  It means that we have a dedicated role to play and that we are to contribute all the gifts that God has provided to that effort.  We all need to do our small part in order for God’s ultimate plan to be fulfilled.  When we all work together in accordance with God’s will, all things will be made right in his perfect timing.  Working together with compassion, love, and mercy is what the Christian life is all about.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Jesus in You

Jesus in You

 

When we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, we are doing much more than joining a new religion.  In fact, we are not joining a religion at all; we are becoming a part of the body of Christ.  Christians are not simply followers of some religious doctrine.  The religion of Christians is to serve God by serving others.  We do this through the power of God that is connected to our lives through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.   To live a Christian life is to become the hands and feet of Jesus – to carry on the work of Jesus in His absence.

“Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.”  James 1:27

Set Apart

As followers of Jesus, we are to be set apart from this world.  Christians are different.  Christians respond to others in a different way.  Christians are different in the way they hold their marriages together.  Christians are different in the way they raise their children.  Christians should be different at home, at school, at work, in church, and everywhere else.  We are no longer spending our lives consumed by selfish ambition – our old life has been done away with – as believers, we are now a direct representative of Christ.

“I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”  Galatians 2:20

Walk with Jesus

In order to truly walk with Jesus, we need to let go of any and all man-made rituals that have been falsely prescribed as the Christian way of life.  Make no mistake about it, there is a counterfeit Christian life that is more of a distraction from Jesus than a fruitful relationship.  We can’t build a relationship with Jesus through ritual.  We build our relationship with Jesus by seeking His truth through our study of the Bible, by sharing quality time with other believers, and by talking with Him, but more importantly listening to Him in prayer.  We then allow Jesus to live through our lives by using the gifts He has given us, sharing our talents and resources with others, and by obeying every nudging of the Holy Spirit when He points us in a new direction.

“He has told you, mortal one, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”  Micah 6:8

Your Humble Walk with God

Anything that is distracting us from following in the footsteps of Jesus should be done away with.  Anything that is outside of our humble walk with God should be done away with.  Anything that does not fulfill the needs of our Lord and Savior is a detour that should be avoided.  Jesus is in you.  Don’t be a slave to any outside influence.  Experience your relationship with Jesus fully and completely by following His guidance found in the pages of the Bible and in your inner connection to Him through the Holy Spirit.  You are an indispensable part of the body of Christ.   Let His light shine.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

God’s Ordinary People

God’s Ordinary People

 

You and I are ordinary people.  We have no miraculous powers.  We go about our day utilizing the tools God has given us.

We each have a certain measure of intellectual ability at our disposal.  We each have a certain measure of physical ability at our disposal.  And we each have a certain measure of resources available to us depending on where we live and how much money we have in the bank.  Keep in mind, all that we have, is a gift from God.

Only God Knows

Some of us have very little to work with, and others have an abundance.  No one can say why some of us are struggling while others are comfortable and secure.  Only God knows why we are who we are, but we can be certain he has given us all the tools we need to accomplish the goals he has in mind for our lives.

Where you are right now is precisely where God wants you to be.  God placed you there because he has a job for you to do.  You are the only person who can accomplish the task God has designed for your life.  Are you working on God’s assignment or are you trying to go in another direction that you believe will be more fulfilling?

We Have an Enemy

We all get pushed and pulled in different directions every day of our lives.  As believers, we often get pushed and pulled more than others.  As believers, we have an enemy dedicated to moving us away from God’s assignment and off in the direction of selfish ambition.  The Bible tells us:  Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8)  The devil is not a factious character made up to keep us doing the right thing – the devil is real and is supported by an army of demonic spirits that seek to destroy the lives of followers of Jesus.  There is a battle going on in this world between good and evil, and as Christians we are right in the middle of the fight.

We Have the Victory

Of course, the victory is already ours.  When we placed our faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we were granted salvation from death and rewarded with the gift of eternal life.  Along with our salvation, we have been empowered by our connection to God through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  We read this in the book of Romans:  Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Romans 15:13)  Together with God, we have the power to overcome the enemy and accomplish all that God has designed our lives to achieve.

Serve God by Serving Others

The enemy wants us to dwell on what we have or don’t have here in this world.  God tells us to let go of the worldly race to riches and focus our lives on serving others.  When we seek the will of God in our lives, we will be blessed with rewards that will outlast everything thing this world has to offer.   We find these words of encouragement in the book of Colossians:  Set your minds on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth.  (Colossians 3:2)  When we plan our day around God’s path, all of our worldly desires will fall away.  When we walk with the Lord it will be impossible to make a wrong turn.

Seek God

God is not hard to find.  He’s right there with you at this very moment.  Don’t let the distractions of the enemy block your connection to God.  If needed, find a quiet place to be alone with God.  Seek his counsel in prayer.  Seek his wisdom in your everyday life by following the path he places before you.  Whenever you come to a crossroad always turn in the direction of God.  You will know in your heart which way is God’s way, when you listen carefully to the Holy Spirit guiding you from within.  When you are walking carefully in the footsteps of Jesus, the will of God will be clearly evident every step of the way.  Keep your eyes on God and everything you need to accomplish His mission for your life will be made available.  Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.  (Proverbs 3:5-6)

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

Giving for God

 

Giving for God

 

Everything we have is a gift from God – everything.  Our finances, our talent, our intellect, our wisdom, our time, and everything else we have at our disposal is a gift from God.  We all have some measure of wealth that we’ve accumulated.  If we are limited in our financial wealth, we likely have intellectual wealth, our possibly a wealth of time or talent.  The Bible tells us that we are to use our wealth to honor God.  When we do this, we will be blessed by God with even more wealth.

“Honor the Lord from your wealth, and from the first of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.”  Proverbs 3:9-10

Bring Honor to God

It’s impossible for us to give more than God has given to us, because He never stops giving; and we should be dedicated to the task of giving as well.  We need to give what we can financially.  We need to give of our talents when and wherever we can.  We need to give of our intellect in a way that benefits others.  We need to give generously of our time serving God by serving others.  Everything we give brings honor to God and is therefore a gift to God.  Of course, God doesn’t need our gifts but He delights in our gift-giving and rewards our sincere sacrifice with more of that which we have gifted.

“Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”  Luke 6:38

You Will be Blessed

Our gift-giving takes on a significant amount of weight in the eyes of God when it is directed toward the cause of Christ.  When we give to our local church, to Christian missionaries, or to any other endeavor dedicated toward expanding the kingdom of God, we can be certain to be blessed as long as our motives are pure.   This is not limited to financial gifts, but also applies to those who frequently give of their time and talents to help build and establish God’s kingdom.

“Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house, or wife, or brothers, or parents, or children for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive many times as much at this time, and in the age to come, eternal life.”  Luke 18:29-30

Share in the Work of the Lord

Giving to God is the process of taking what he has given to us and sharing it with others.  In so doing, we give God honor, worship, and praise.  God intentionally made us all different, and has supplied each of us with different forms of wealth.  We are all part of God’s complex mechanism designed to work together for His glory.  Our sacrificial giving on God’s behalf is a practical form of worship.  Worship without sacrifice is empty.  Praise God for all that you have.  Praise God for the opportunity to give.  Praise God for placing you in exactly the right place to share in the work of the Lord.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

The Spirit of Truth

The Spirit of Truth

 

Believers are indwelled with the Holy Spirit the moment they accept Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.  That is a permanent residency.  We can count on this connection to God every minute of every day.  The Holy Spirit helps us face all of the challenges of life through the power of God.  The Holy Spirit helps us understand the will of God, points us in the right direction, and stands with us in times of despair.

“I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, so that He may be with you forever; the Helper is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him; but you know Him because He remains with you and will be in you.”  John 14:16-17

The Ultimate Guide

There is no better guide in life than the Holy Spirit.  He knows each of us intimately – past, present, and future.  We feel his presence every time we come to a crossroad and aren’t sure which way to turn.  We may feel a heaviness in our heart guiding us away from one choice and a deep inner peace pulling us in the direction of the will of God.  We have to stay open to the promptings of the Holy Spirit so we don’t miss His instruction.  We have to stay in communication with the Holy Spirit in prayer and through our study of the Bible.  When we remain in tune with the Holy Spirit, our lives are perfectly positioned to accomplish every task the Lord places in our path.

“By this we know that we remain in Him and He in us, because He has given to us of His Spirit.”  1 John 4:13

Child of God

We know we are being guided by the Holy Spirit when we seem to be empowered by supernatural strength and wisdom, when resources seem to come out of nowhere, and when those around us are filled with words of encouragement.  The Holy Spirit knows precisely what we need to fully enjoy our relationship with Jesus, and He enables us to achieve all that we can in the Lord.  There isn’t anything the Holy Spirit can’t handle.  As children of God, we are safely in the hands of the Holy Spirit every minute of every day.

“For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons and daughters of God.”  Romans 8:14

Revealing the Truth

The Holy Spirit is with us to reveal the truth.  He is our direct line to all the knowledge of God.  When we obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit we are walking in the footsteps of Jesus.  Don’t allow this world to disrupt your connection to the Holy Spirit.  If needed, find a quiet place to pray and listen carefully for His guidance.  Trust Him always!  He will never point you in the wrong direction.  You will be greatly blessed when you depend fully on the Spirit of Truth.

 

All scripture references are linked to Bible Gateway so that you can read each verse in context.  Bible Gateway allows you to change the verse to your favorite translation and compare it side-by-side with multiple translations.  In addition, you can select to hear an audio version of any verse by clicking on the speaker icon.  Keep the Bible Gateway App on your phone so that you can visit the Word of God at any time during your day.

God’s Viral Video

 

 

God’s Viral Video

 

I’m going to ask you to use your imagination as you read this post.  I’d like you to erase all your knowledge of Christianity for a few minutes to consider this…

Imagine, if you will, a man suddenly appearing in public claiming to be the Son of God.  Not a son of God, but thee Son of God.  Imagine this man claiming that he is not only the Son of God, but he is identical to God – with all of God’s wisdom and power.  Imagine he claims to be one with God.  Of course, our immediate reaction would be to dismiss this man as delusional.  Why would God appear on earth as a man traveling around preaching peace and love?

Miracle Videos

But what if this man demonstrated his power by healing the sick, bringing sight back to the blind, and even bringing dead people back to life?  What if there were hundreds of videos showing these miracles?  What if they just kept happening day after day and the videos were proved to be legitimate – not some kind of trick?  A video of a dead man coming back to life would most certainly go viral.  Everyone would try to debunk the video as fake.  But what if the eyewitnesses corroborated the story and demonstrated beyond any doubt that all these miracles happened?  And what if these miracles just kept happening day after day?

Government Feels Threatened

Eventually the authorities would want to talk with this man.  They would want to know why he was disrupting the natural order of our society with outrageous claims and cleverly manufactured miracles.  But what if they couldn’t figure out how these miracles were being manufactured?  What if they determined this man to be a threat to the power of government and decided to arrest him and put him on trial?

Of course the many followers this man had accumulated would be upset; but the fact that the government was accusing him of trickery, might make some skeptical.  The hope would be that the trial would uncover the truth; however, what if the government was corrupt?  What if the government stacked the deck against this man and railroaded him into a death penalty verdict?

Death Penalty

Now imagine, if you will, this man placed on death row.  Imagine he is left in a room with a group of other death penalty inmates who mock his claim to be equal to God and are determined to teach him a lesson.  Imagine, with the prison guard’s blessing, the other inmates are allowed to beat and kick this man to within an inch of his life.  Of course all of this would be reported on the news and many would be wondering why this man did not use his powers to overcome the beating from the inmates.  Video from the prison security cameras would create another viral video. Doubts would begin to fill the minds of even this man’s strongest allies.

Execution

Now imagine that because the corrupt government was so threatened by this man they offered him no chance for appeal and immediately carried out his execution.  Imagine his dead body was placed in a morgue cold storage drawer on Friday and left to be recovered for burial on Monday.  Imagine the storage drawer was locked, and the building was locked, and there was a surveillance camera on the storage drawer all through the weekend.

The Greatest Viral Video of All Time

What would happen if the morgue cold storage drawer was found empty on Monday and the Son of God was seen preaching to a large group of his followers that afternoon?  It seems to me, this viral video would never stop collecting views.  It would probably continue to be shared in some form for thousands of years.  It seems to me it would be impossible to deny the Son of God’s claims.

 

Obedience to God