Do you ever wonder why Christians have to deal with so much stuff from people? Why does it seem the rights of everyone else are important all the while our rights are trying to be diminished by opposing forces? Why does it seem that we are singled out to be somebody to mess with when the cut-ups of this world get by on a free pass.
I’ll tell you why.
Things are set in motion like that to try to discourage us from our walk with Christ; our belief. The fact of the matter is our lives are convicting to those who fight against God and His plan for humanity. God, through His Word, tells of a holy requirement He desires to see played out in the lives of each and every individual. Those who seek after the flesh and revel in carnality and sin don’t want the same desires as He. Rather, they fight vehemently against it and anything that resembles it (i.e. Christians).
Once Jesus taught, “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid,” Matthew 5:14. You shine for Him. You magnify His brightness and glory in the midst of degradation and sin. You are a beacon to show people the way to this wonderful life in Him through the darkness and disparity of this world. As a Christian, you look like Him (in character), you talk like Him and that bothers those who oppose Him.
In a life that has been transformed by His renewing power, it becomes a living testimony to grace, mercy, and the power of salvation working itself out in humanity. Although these wonderful things are available to all for the asking, few choose to look to Him for those wonderful gifts. They would much rather pursue the things of the flesh than that of the Spirit causing war and contentions with those who walk and talk differently then them.
Nonetheless, I urge you brother and sister in Christ, keep walking the holy walk. No matter the fighting. No matter the contentions. Keep showing this world, through the life you live, what a mighty God we serve. Philippians tells us we are, “In the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world,” (2:15). By the continual light of Christ beaming from your life, you are helping others to draw nearer to Him; you are helping others to see the hope that is available if they would but turn.
The life we live may cause us discomfort at times, but the reward of having others see Christ in us is immeasurable. You and I can positively effect change in the lives of others for eternity. I think, my friends, that far outweighs the opposition we may face today.
And, as we are living, let us always remember we have nothing to boast or be arrogant about. We are saved today because somebody else stood up as a light for us showing us the way; somebody else’s lives were convicting, pricking our hearts to want to know Him more. Our salvation is NEVER anything for us to glory in. We can only glory in our Savior who gave His life that we might have new life in Him. We are now vessels filled with His grace that we might positively pour into and shine in the lives of others.
What people witness in your life resounds more than the words that are coming out of your mouth. Evidence of belief; proof of faith is the visual representation that most want. Many mistake others as not wanting what we have or not wanting the faith, yet they haven’t seen enough of it in action to provoke them to seek after what we say we have.
So, the old phrase still rings true today: “Seeing is believing.” To a world lost, who have not hope, they look for a ring of hope they can grab onto to prevent them from drowning in the deep abyss of the darkness of this world. They want a way out. Many don’t want to sink deeper into despair, deeper into the unknown where there is no light to guide the way. They want to see what you say you see. They want to feel what you say you feel. They want what you say you have but do they see it currently active in you to propel them from wanting it to seeking it?
Your faith speaks louder than your words. Paul told the church at Thessalonica, “Your faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything,” 1 Thessalonians 1:8b, NKJV. If necessary I believe Paul would have testified on their behalf, he would have spoken up for them to assure others of their faith. But, their faith was so active, their faith was so alive and in operation that he didn’t feel a need to speak at all. Their faith did the talking for them. Their faith is what people noticed, not the words they spoke from their mouth.
A lot of people do a lot of talking these days and sometimes it’s hard to decipher truth from fiction. Jesus gave us a key that lines right up with what Paul wrote in his letter. Jesus said, “Ye shall know them by their fruits,” Matthew 7:16. If one comes upon a tree that has apples growing upon it then they are to assume it is an apple tree. The same is true with a life of faith. What they see coming out of you, or as Paul referred to as “gone out” is what matters the most. You can say that you are an orange tree but if I see apples then I will classify you as an apple tree. If you say that you have great faith but all I see is the opposite than I will not view you as having great faith. I will mark you by what I see.
Your faith matters in this world. More importantly, your faith on display matters to those around you so much that one should not have to speak up or testify for you, all they should be able to do is look at your faith in action and mark you as a person of faith.
Text Free Photo: Pixabay/StockSnap
Whatever is a word
used with disregard;
it comes as an answer
when life seems hard.
Whatever is a comfort
I take to heart;
a word I treasure
when life falls apart.
all my pain and sorrow.
Whatever sows seeds
of hope for tomorrow.
Whatever, no matter
what the burden is,
I cast them to Him,
and now they are His.
I don’t have to worry,
I don’t have to fear;
shouldered upon His love,
whatever the frets, they disappear.
“Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you,” 1 Peter 5:7
Text Free Photo: Pixabay/kerttu
“For all the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him amen, unto the glory of God by us,” 2 Corinthians 1:20
It’s back to school time around here. Each school year starts out brand new. New backpacks, new supplies, new clothes; along with new hopes and dreams with the anticipation of promise lingering in the air. This is going to be a wonderful year!
By the end of the first month of school, children and sometimes parents too, start looking forward to days off, delayed openings due to weather and such. The reality of the daily grinding and horse race schedules overshadow the promise that was once felt. Instead of realigning oneself to keep hold of the promise that was once felt in the atmosphere, we begin to gripe and complain. Looking forward to the end of the school year, or at least Christmas break for some relief becomes the new goal.
Often times, we treat the promises of God in the same manner also.
He gives us this wonderful volume (the Bible), filled with sixty-six books. And in each of those sixty-six books therein is packed with “more.” God has “more” for you than this. Line upon line and precept upon precept tells us how much He cares for us, loves us, and wants more for us. The Bible starts way back in the book of Genesis with promise. And, it goes all the way through to the end of Revelation. How does it end? With promise! “He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen,” (Rev. 22:20-21). That’s a promise!
Unfortunately, as it is with the school year so it is in life. In the beginning, when the promise is fresh we are ecstatic. Then, as the everyday issues begin to settle in it starts to wear on the assurance that once was, leaving one to do nothing but constantly focusing on the end. Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly,” (John 10:10, NKJV). He doesn’t desire for “life” to be something tolerated. Rather, He wants it filled. And with that, there is the anticipation of something better.
Promises only work when one accepts it. You can quote it all that you like, but unless it is internalized as a hopeful thing in the life of each of us, it does absolutely no good. Many people can read of the promises but they can’t believe in them for themselves. Only seeing with the eyes but never touching. They never experience the greatness that God wants to do. That’s not God’s intention for you. “For all the promises of God in Him are yes,” (NKJV). Now, it may be just me but when I see the words “all,” and “promises,” and “God,” and “yes,” I get excited! If you are in Christ, God says yes to every promise that comes with that salvation. Yes!
Won’t you accept it today? Yes!
I don’t have enough space or time here to even begin to list what He has in store for us. And, the half has not been told. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him,” (1 Cor. 2:9). The promises are there in His Word. All you have to do is believe it and receive it!
Be a promise accepter today. Go through the Bible, find verses that speak to you right now, highlight them, and write them down or whatever you do to remember a verse, then, lay hold of it as your personal treasure. Let them be your source of strength when life doesn’t feel as “abundant.” Accept what He said anyhow. Step out in faith, holding on to those precious promises for dear life.
“Faith is all about trusting God even when you don’t understand His plan.” – Joel Osteen
“That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” – 1 Corinthians 2:5
“Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.” – Psalm 46:10
“Keep the faith. The vision is always for the appointed time. Be patient, prayerful and wait for the fulfillment of your visions.” – Lailah Gifty Akita
“Relying on God has to start all over everyday, as if nothing has yet been done.” – C.S. Lewis
“Remembering the goodness of God in the past, will help us in seasons where it’s harder to see Him.” – Esther Fleece
“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” – Isaiah 41:10
“But I trusted in thee, O LORD: I said, Thou art my God.” – Psalm 31:14
It’s because of, … but God!