Pursue Jesus and Use Wisdom (Single & Following Jesus Series Part VIII)

For the Lord God is a Sun and Shield; the Lord bestows [present] grace and favor and [future] glory (honor, splendor, and heavenly bliss)! No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly,~Psalm 84:11.

“Get [skillful and godly] wisdom! Acquire understanding [actively seek spiritual discernment, mature comprehension, and logical interpretation]!

Do not forget nor turn away from the words of my mouth. Do not turn away from her (Wisdom) and she will guard and protect you;

Love her, and she will watch over you,”~Proverbs 4:5-6.

Wisdom is so vital in all of life.

Believers are encouraged to follow Jesus and acquire wisdom. The pursuit of wisdom is not for demonic wisdom; the wisdom of this age is not always in alignment with God.

Godly wisdom is pure, full of truth, love, and has the best interests of everyone involved considered. Godly wisdom is holy; it is without sin.

Our culture promotes immorality and sensuality. It is ungodly. The movies and tv promote immorality without ever truly showing the depths of the consequences for immoral choices.

Our culture also promotes the lie that sex or marriage will complete a person.

As stated last post, casual sex is promoted. Not only is casual sex promoted so is love at first sight, magical/mystical/over romanced/over sexualized relationships. Many of these relationships disregard wisdom, true God love, or God’s truths. They sound good, may look good, yet they do not hold onto goodness as you fast forward to when reality sets into the picture.

Ex: Henry and Julie who fell in love find out a year later after the honeymoon period is over that they have nothing in common that’s not physical, they the thrill is gone, they fight over money, they hate each other’s families, and they are miserable. This scenario rarely makes it to the big screen. Henry and Julie maybe pursued lust/feelings over wisdom and love. Then we see them break up (if unmarried) or divorce.

Follow Jesus:

Jesus is love, therefore pursuing God is pursuing love. God helps us to love ourselves and others. When God is first, the voids in our lives are filled by God. We then make decisions out of unselfish, sacrificial love not lust (which is about pleasing self), selfishness, desperation, or loneliness. God fills all the empty places so we enter relationships prepared to give, not with our hands out to receive or be made whole by an imperfect human. Only God can completely fill the voids of the soul and spirit. God solidifies identity, not a mate.

When God is first, He can bring in an equal complement/companion. Otherwise there may be a temptation to pursue a match that is less that God’s best. There are no perfect people, there are God matches that are better together than apart.

Wisdom says, “Will the relationship add value for both people? Is God at the center? Can we grow together? Is there mutual effort? Are we headed the same direction? How does this person handle life, conflict, money? Would God or my close friends/family choose this person for me? Is this person even interested in a lifelong partnership with me? Can we be allies? Are we friends?

If things do not work out, are we leaving the person in better shape than they were before they met us? Or are they in need of deep inner healing after connecting to us? Seriously think about what you bring to the table. Is it good? Does it add value?

The people who engage in sex outside of marriage are robbing a future spouse of intimacy with that person and their own future spouse. The one who engages in pornography is robbing themselves of deep intimacy and understanding of what God intended with sex. His design was always about love; unselfish, committed, holy, powerful, intimate, sacrificial love. The devil invites people to cheapen the most intimate act between a man and woman.

Love is willing to slow down and pray. Love is willing to evaluate the situation and relationship with God. Love wants to keep God in first place. Love pursues purity. Love is willing to set boundaries that offer protection of both people. Love is who God is.

Pursue Wisdom:

Let’s venture into another part of process, pursuing wisdom. I have met many people hurt because they forsook wisdom.

Ex: Susie likes John so she starts having dreams that he is the one. Obviously God speaks in dreams, so she should grab ahold to that dream and start planning their wedding in her head (not wisdom). Hit the mega pause button. I have seen women do this and ignore the actions of John. John is a jerk and mistreats everyone, yet there is this dream/prophetic word-so Susie holds on for dear life only to find out later John never wanted to marry her, or worse they get married and he’s an abuser.

Red Alert: Every dream, vision, prophetic word needs tested. Every single one. Do not just run with a “word” or “impression” or “dream” without testing it to see if it’s truly God. I do not care who the prophet was who gave that word, it needs tested and confirmed. The devil speaks and can invade dreams, impressions, visions.

If you think you heard from God about someone, pray and put that word on the shelf. I recommend praying, “God show me who this person really is,” and watching them. How do they treat you? Do you always initiate contact? Do they invest in you at all? How does being with this person impact your life? Are you constantly confused about where you stand with that person? Are they controlling, mean, unloving? Do they treat you with love, respect, honor?

Too many times people fall for who they want someone to be instead of who they really are. Would you let your best friend marry someone like the person you are interested in? If not, why are you in that relationship?

I have seen women chase men like they are Jesus then end up disappointed they are rejected. Relationships are not mean to be like the animal kingdom; chase, pursue, conquer. They are supposed to be about love. Love involves mutual pursuit.

Evaluate your relationship:

Is your relationship life giving? Or are you in tears or upset most of the time? God wants His very best for you, for everyone. God ordained matchups still have challenges, they should not be loaded with confusion, uncertainty, abuse, pain, and suffering.

I have also seen both men and women cling to the idea that someone loves them or is interested in them who will not commit to them nor express their intentions.

Ex: Karla has been into Jerry for years. Jerry flirts and is nice yet has never asked her on a date, never expressed interest, and does nothing to initiate contact or getting to know each other. Karla is convinced his flirting when he sees her is more than it is.

I work in a predominately male environment and they have told me, “We flirt because it’s fun. It makes us feel good.” Therefore there is no intention of a relationship. For the unsaved person there may be an intention of a hook up, but not marriage or a serious relationship.

Get Wisdom! Ask for discernment.

“Discernment is more than the ability to differentiate between right and wrong. It is the ability to differentiate between right and almost right.”

Wisdom looks at the future as well as the present. Wisdom prays and seeks godly counsel. Wisdom is a life preserver. Wisdom says, “Where is God in this situation? Are we are good match? Spiritually are we on the same page? Can we grow together? Is this someone God would choose for me? Are my God expectations on this person when they should be on God? How does this person treat people, including me? Does this person demonstrate any of the fruit of the Spirit?”

Papa God I pray every unmarried person pursues Jesus and wisdom. I bind any spirits of impatience, deception, selfishness, lust, false dreams/false prophecies, and declare soul health. Come Lord Jesus and fill every soul with your love, peace, joy, and purity. Fill every person to overflowing. Impart godly wisdom and truth. Help each person make wise decisions about relationships. Prepare each person for what you have for them. Heal all past relational wounding, in Jesus powerful name. Amen.

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Know, Speak, Do (Holy Spirit Series Part 5)

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I know we took a week off from the Holy Spirit Series. I want to jump back in to talk about the gifts of the Holy Spirit. We talked about what they are a few posts ago. I want to encourage you not to limit God to a list. The Holy Spirit is fully God and can manifest His Presence in ways we may not understand.

Scriptures are filled with stories of ordinary people encountering an extraordinary God. Has God changed or have our expectations of what He will do changed? I truly believe we don’t expect much from God anymore. Since we in the Western world have so many options, it’s easy to bypass God. We rely on ourselves, others, intellect, or our abundant resources.

On missions we’ve seen more people giving their hearts to God, healed of sickness and diseases, and encountering God in powerful ways.

What’s the purpose of all these gifts of the Spirit?

To build up the body of Christ. To demonstrate the love of Christ. Love and power combine to bring heaven to earth.

Let’s look at the gifts coupled with the fruit of the Spirit.

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The attributes of God are manifest through the gifts.

Knowing Gifts:
Words of Wisdom:

This is a revelation gift.

…this gift involves having a sense of divine direction, being led by the Holy Spirit to act appropriately in a given set of circumstances, and rightly applying knowlege.

The gift of wisdom is the wisdom of God. It is the supernatural impartation of facts; it is not natural. You can’t earn it. It is received from God through prayer (Ephesians 1:17).

Words of Knowledge:

A word of knowledge is a definite conviction, impression, or knowing that comes to you in a similitude (a mental picture), a dream, through a vision, or by a Scripture that is quickened to you. It is supernatural insight or understanding of circumstances, situations, problems, or a body of facts by revelation; that is, without assistance by any human resource but solely by divine aid.

Discerning of Spirits:

Discerning of spirits is the supernatural ability given by the Holy Spirit to perceive the source of a spiritual manifestation and determine whether it is of God (Acts 10:30-35), of the devil (Acts 16:16-18), of man (Acts 8:18-23), or of the world. It is not mind reading, psychic phenomena, or the ability to criticize and find fault.

Discernment will also enable you to recognize the Holy Spirit in another person.

Speaking Gifts:
Tongues:

Supernatural utterance in languages not known to the speaker; these languages may be existent in the world, revived from some past culture, or “unknown” in the sense that they are a means of communication inspired by the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 28:11; Mark 16:17; Acts 2:4, 10:44-48, 19:1-7; I Corinthians 12:10, 13:1-3, 14:2, 4-22, 26-32).

The spiritual gift involving ability to speak in foreign language(s) not previously studied or to respond to experience of the Holy Spirit by uttering sounds which those without the gift of interpretation could not understand. At Pentecost the church received the gift to communicate the gospel in foreign languages (Acts 2). God gave His Spirit to all His people to empower them to witness and prophesy. In Corinth some members of the church uttered sounds the rest of the congregation did not understand (I Corinthians 12-14). This led to controversy and division. Paul tried to unite the church, assuring the church that there are different gifts but only one Spirit (I Corinthians 12:4-11).

Interpretation of Tongues:

Interpretation of tongues is a supernatural verbalization and subsequent interpretation to reveal the meaning of a diverse tongue. This gift operates out of the mind of the Spirit rather than out of the mind of man.

Prophecy:

Prophesy is speaking God’s words and agenda for the building up of the Body and others. It is to encourage, edify, warn, and correct. Paul tells us about prophecy in 1 Corinthians 14:1.

Let love be your highest goal! But you should also desire the special abilities the Spirit gives–especially the ability to prophesy,~1 Corinthians 14:1.

All prophecy is to be tested. Meaning we take what’s said and weigh it against God’s word and character.

Prophecy is divinely inspired and anointed utterance; a supernatural proclamation in a known language. It is the manifestation of the Spirit of God – not of intellect (I Corinthians 12:7), and it may be possessed and operated by all who have the infilling of the Holy Spirit (I Corinthians 14:31).

Doing Gifts:
Faith for Miracles (Gift of Faith):

The gift of faith is the supernatural ability to believe God without doubt, combat unbelief, and visualize what God wants to accomplish. It is not only an inner conviction impelled by an urgent and higher calling, but also a supernatural ability to meet adverse circumstances with trust in God’s words and messages.

Healing:

The gift of healings refers to supernatural healing; it is a special gift to pray for specific diseases.

Healing can come through the touch of faith (James 5:14-15); by speaking the word of faith (Luke 7:1-10); or by the presence of God being manifested (Mark 6:56; Acts 19:11-12).

Miracles:

The greatest miracle is salvation.

A miracle is the performance of something which is against the laws of nature; it is a supernatural power to intervene and counteract earthly and evil forces. The word miracles comes from the Greek word dunamis which means “power and might that multiplies itself.” The gift of miracles operates closely with the power gifts of faith and healings to bring authority over Satan, sickness, sin, and the binding forces of this age.

Miracles can also be defined as supernatural intercessions of God. God exhorts us with energy to do something that is not natural or normal to us. Just as the ministry gift of miracles is the expression of prayer, so is the function of the Holy Spirit to direct our prayers (Romans 8:26).

Italasized text from Christcenteredmall.

The gifts of the Spirit are available to all believers. Some believe if a gift isn’t apparent in their life, then that’s it. Paul encouraged people to desire and ask God for the gifts. Gifts as stated before are not signs of spiritual maturity or to be used to abuse people. They are to be led by the Holy Spirit and measured by the fruit of the Spirit.

Father, I ask we would fully believe the Holy Spirit is capable of all things. He is fully God. He can do all things. Help us to rely fully on Him. In Jesus powerful name, amen.

Gifted (Holy Spirit Series Part 3)

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There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines,~1 Corinthians 12:4-11.

Before we start talking about the gifts of the Holy Spirit, I want to touch on the purpose of the gifts.

A. To glorify God. The Holy Spirit is continually at work to glorify God. The gifts of the Spirit are given for His glory.

B. To build up the Body of Christ and be a blessing. Most natural or gifts of the world are beneficial for the recipient. We are called to use the gifts of the Spirit to bless one another.

C. Reveal the character of God. There’s so much that can be said here about how God works through His children to demonstrate to the world His character. Read the entire Bible. Every story reveals some aspect of His nature.

What the gifts are not:

1. Proof of spiritual maturity. Gifts are given by the Holy Spirit as He sees fit. Fruit (see last post) is manifest in our lives through abiding, pruning, and relationship with God. Someone can have gifts of the Spirit and be led by their flesh or be spiritually very immature.

Gifts are free, maturity is costly,”~Bill Johnson.

2. Proof of salvation. This one can be touchy as some teach the gifts are proof of salvation. We are saved by faith, not by our ability to do something (Ephesians 2:8).

3. About us. The gifts are for other people. It’s not about us. It’s about God and others.

4. For sale. There are many verses in the Bible about not using the gifts of God for personal gain. Those who demand money to pray for people or prophesy or share wisdom, I dare not judge, it’s not encouraged in the Bible. Jesus said, “Freely you’ve received, freely give,” Matt 10:8. There’s a difference between accepting an offering or holding a paid office (as pastor, counselor), and demanding people pay you to pray for their sick relative, etc…God hates exploitation, and mistreatment of the poor.

I’ve visited services (long ago) where you had to give an offering to get prayer for a miracle and the person made it seem the more you gave the minister, the more incentive God had to bless or heal you. God is generous. He’s looking to give, not exploit people. Our giving should be motivated by a desire to give, to honor Him, an act of worship, not to get something from God.

5. To embarrass, harass, or condemn people. Jesus used the gifts to help people. He knew the sins of the people around Him, yet He didn’t frequently broadcast their sins for the purpose of humiliation. If the Holy Spirit reveals a persons weaknesses, it’s so we can pray or gently lead to restoration. It’s not so we can gossip, judge, or shame people.

Spiritual discernment (the ability to see good or evil at work in someone’s life) is for the purpose of helping the person, honoring them, building them up, and/or restoring them.

Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted,~Galatians 6:1.

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Now that I’ve touched on the purpose and what they are not. What are the gifts of the Holy Spirit?

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The image is not an exhaustive list. It covers the gifts mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12. I will break down the gifts in more detail next post.

Be encouraged that every member of Christ’s Body has a role to play and no member is more important than another. If you read the rest of 1 Corinthians 12, it covers unity within the Body of Christ and how EVERY person has a part.

The Holy Spirit

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And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you,~Romans 8:11.

In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams,~Acts 2:17.

…the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law,~Gal 5:22-23.

The Holy Spirit is the third person in the Trinity. He is fully God. He is eternal, omniscient, omnipresent, has a will, and can speak. He is alive. He is a person,~Matt Slick.

The Holy Spirit is not a strange force. He is fully God. He can speak (Acts 13:2); He can be grieved (Eph. 4:30); and He has a will (1 Cor. 12:11).

He is the Spirit who empowered Jesus, led Him, raised Him from the dead, affirmed Him, bears witness to Him, and overshadowed Mary to conceive Jesus (Matt 1:18-20). He works to convict the world of sin. He lives in believers; continually revealing truth, God’s love, and proving wisdom, insight, and comfort. He works in believers to mold their character into the likeness of Jesus. And there is so much more. He is glorious!

The Holy Spirit is often misunderstood. To some He’s not necessary. To others He’s everything. Some equate Spirit filled living with wild, crazy, and looney manifestations. So, instead of seeking to live empowered by Him there is caution and sometimes quenching of the Spirit. I will say God can do anything He’d like and for some their walk with the Holy Spirit seems unconventional. I pray we are not quick to judge or compare. The only thing we can say is the Holy Spirit will not violate the Word of God. I’ve seen people laugh, cry, dance, shake, tremble, behave like they’re drunk, speak in tongues and have interpretation, all due to an overwhelming encounter with God’s Spirit. How can we assess the encounters? Well, all the things I’ve mentioned above are recorded in the Bible. And if they weren’t, we still must operate in grace and not accuse others of make believe, being prideful, or attention seeking. Discernment, love, compassion, and grace are needed.

I’ve found the encounter led to the person being changed in some way; deeper understanding of God’s love, healing (emotional or physical), freedom from some stronghold ( addictions, etc…). When God is working, who are we to judge, criticize, or put limits on God? He’s always up to something good.

The Roles of the Holy Spirit:

The Holy Spirit serves a great purpose in the Trinity. Without Him we do not have a revelation of Jesus, we have limited to no understanding of Scripture, we have no comforter or depositor of gifts, we have no seal promising we belong to God, and we cannot live empowered lives without Him. He’s significant. He’s so important. He’s vital to living like Jesus.

The Works of the Holy Spirit (credit to Mike Slick for the outline).

Access to God – Eph. 2:18
Inspires prayer – Eph. 6:18; Jude 20
Anoints for Service – Luke 4:18 Intercedes -Rom. 8:26
Assures – Rom. 8:15-16; Gal. 4:6 Interprets Scripture – 1 Cor. 2:1,14;
Eph. 1:17
Authors Scripture – 2 Pet. 1:20-21 Leads – Rom. 8:14
Baptizes – John 1:23-34; 1 Cor. 12:13-14
Liberates – Rom. 8:2
Believers Born of – John 3:3-6
Molds Character – Gal. 5:22-23
Calls and Commissions – Acts 13:24; 20:28
Produces fruit – Gal. 5:22-23
Cleanses – 1 Thess. 3:13; 1 Pet. 1:2 Empowers Believers – Luke 24:49
Convicts of sin – John 16:9,14
Raises from the dead – Rom. 8:11
Creates – Gen. 1:2; Job 33:4 Regenerates – Titus 3:5
Empowers – 1 Thess. 1:5
Sanctifies – Rom. 15:16
Fills – Acts 2:4; 4:29-31; 5:18-20
Seals – Eph. 1:13-14; 4:30
Gives gifts – 1 Cor. 12:8-11
Strengthens – Eph. 3:16; Acts 1:8; 2:4;
1 Cor. 2:4
Glorifies Christ – John 16:14
Teaches – John 14:26
Guides in truth – John 16:13
Testifies of Jesus – John 15:26
Helps our weakness – Rom. 8:26 Victory over flesh – Rom. 8:2-4; Gal. 4:6
Indwells believers – Rom. 8:9-14; Gal. 4:6

As we enter this series on the Holy Spirit, I pray our hearts are enlightened to His work in our lives. May we submit to Him, listen to Him, follow Him, and thank Him. He, like Jesus and the Father, is an important part of our lives as believers. May we live Holy Spirit empowered lives! God bless you!

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One Body, Many Parts (Identity in Christ Part 19)

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Hello dear friends. Tonight I wanted to talk about something I am passionate about, the Body of Christ. As His co-labors we are called to not only have a relationship with Him, but with other believers. Each member of the Body has a role to play. Christ is the head of the church. We cannot not function without Him. If we as the Body do nothing, how successful are we at building His Kingdom? If my body is paralyzed, I am not going to move as quick or be as effective. Let’s investigate what Paul had to say.

Unity and Diversity in the Body-1 Corinthians 12-31.

Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.

Now if the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it. And God has placed in the church first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Do all work miracles? Do all have gifts of healing? Do all speak in tongues? Do all interpret? Now eagerly desire the greater gifts.

In our western society we focus mainly on a few parts of the Body: pastors, missionaries, evangelists, and worship leaders. They are the noticeable parts of the Body. They are the honored parts of the Body. Well, what about everyone else? Paul states every person has a role to play and the parts that seem weaker are indispensable. The parts we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. What if your role in the Body is to invest in your children, or pass out flyers, or set up or tear down at church? What if your role is to infiltrate business, arts, media, education, politics, or your workplace with the Gospel and love of Jesus? What if what you do for God goes unnoticed by everyone but Him? It’s easy to look at other people and think God only uses certain people. It’s also easy in the western world to come to church Sunday after Sunday and not invest anything in anyone. It’s easy to come to be served instead of serve. It’s easy to go unnoticed in larger congregations, no one sees you come or go. It’s easy to not know anyone from your church. That is not what Paul told us we are to be. No condemnation here. We don’t invest out of guilt, but love. If we are forced to serve or invest in people or the Kingdom, God tells us we can keep our gifts.

What’s stopping us from being active parts of His Body? Here are some possible reasons.

1. We are comparing ourselves to others instead of looking to Christ to find out what role we are to play.

2. We think of church as a place to go instead of a community we are to be actively involved in.

3. We think God only uses and speaks to special people.

4. We are waiting on some sign to tell us what to do.

5. We are consumers instead of investors.

6. We are relying on someone else to do it. We rely heavily on the same people who are “called” instead of recognizing we are all called to fill a role.

7. We want a front and center role instead of an unrecognized one.

8.  We are waiting to be asked instead of volunteering or serving without being asked or noticed.

9. We don’t see how vital we are to the Body.

10. We are inward focused instead of community focused.

11. We think the Holy Spirit only works through certain people, “special people.”

First let me say the same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead is working in born again believers. It’s not a different Holy Spirit for different people. I’ve seen children with spiritual insight and operating in the gifts of the Spirit. They are extremely effective because they are relying on God and aren’t filled with unbelief. God works through ordinary people.

Jesus told the disciples to preach the Gospel, heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the leper, drive out evil spirits, disciple others. We are called to do the same things. We are here to do what we saw Jesus doing. Freely we received, freely we give (Matthew 10:8). We all have a role we can play. The role no matter how small we think it is, is important to God.

What if you’re wondering how to daily or weekly bless the Body of Christ. I talked to a friend tonight about this very topic, we can think of how we enjoy blessing people and do that. If you like hosting events, be a host. If you like kids, volunteer to help a mom or in children’s ministry. If you enjoy encouraging people, encourage people. If you like giving, give. If you have words of wisdom or insight, share them. If you enjoy praying for people, pray. If you like teaching, teach. God encourages us to eagerly ask for opportunities to bless others. He is not stingy. He will use us mightily for Him. I read a quote that I love, “We can all do great things as long as we don’t care who gets the credit.” We are all called to bear one anther’s burdens, pray, give, share, love. There are ways we can all be a blessing.

Closing thoughts:

You have a significant role to play that no other person was destined to play. You are a crucial part of Christ’s Body. No part is insignificant or not valued. I was in a car accident the end of January and had one rib out of place and two cervical disks out of alignment. The nerve pain radiated down my arms, to my fingers. The burning pain was awful. The tops of my feet felt like they were on fire. I could not get comfortable. It took the Spine specialist ~10 minutes to put them back into alignment and the pain was gone. It wasn’t my brain, heart, lungs, or major organs malfunctioning. It was a small rib and two disks that impacted most of my body. I even had tingling on face. Every part must work for the Body to be as effective as it can be.

May we never forget we are to work together to build God’s Kingdom. We all have a role to play and it’s for His Glory.

Unlimited Resources (Identity in Christ Part 12)

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Believe Me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in Me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask Me for anything in My name, and I will do it,~Jesus. John 14: 11-14.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest, Matthew 11:28.

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him! Matthew 7:11.

God has not only promised us eternal life with Him in paradise, He has promised us access to unlimited resources here on earth. I am not talking about the prosperity message you see on TV, if you ask God for a million dollars He is obligated to give it to you. He’s not obligated to do anything. He’s God and He can say no to anything He wants, any time He wants. More than making us wealthy in terms of monetary wealth, God wants our souls to prosper. He wants us to become more like Jesus. Today I wanted to talk about the resources God has given us aside from salvation.

Grace (getting what we don’t deserve), mercy (not getting what we do deserve), love (nothing can separate us from His love), peace (Jesus said, “My peace I give to you, do not be anxious or afraid“), hope (Jesus went to prepare a place for us), joy (the joy of the Lord is our strength), healing (By the stripes of Jesus we are healed), wisdom (He who asks for wisdom will receive it), comfort (Jesus said, “Come to Me all who are weary and I will give you rest“), rest (God gives rest to the weary), friendship (He no longer calls us slaves but friends), revelation (God reveals Himself to us), knowledge (The Holy Spirit revels the mysteries of God and provides prophetic insight), His presence (we can come boldly before God as beloved children), freedom (He who the Son sets free is free indeed), victory (we are more than conquerors through Christ who gives us strength), provision (Our God shall supply all our needs according to His riches in glory), the Holy Spirit (He is our seal marking us as belonging to God, He is at work to transform us from the inside out), The gifts of the Spirit (God provides gifts to every believer to build up the body of Christ), the fruit of God’s Spirit ( the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Gal 5:22-23a)), angelic support (God gives His angels guard over us), intercession (Jesus lives to intercede for us), power (we have been given power in Jesus name over evil, sin, and the works of the enemy).

God didn’t save us and say, “Good luck down there. I hope you survive.” No, He said, “I have saved you, redeemed you, empowered you, filled you with My Spirit, given you the keys to the Kingdom, set you free to set others free, given you full access to Me, now do what you saw My Son doing.” Jesus came not only to save, but to destroy the works of the enemy. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil, 1 John 3:8.

God has given us the power and resources to say no to sin, to free the captives, to bring liberty to the oppressed, to heal the sick, raise the dead, change lives, and bring heaven to earth. It’s not by our power or strength, but by the power of God working through us. We are not just here to suffer through life. We are here to be victorious. We are here to be a light in a dark world. It’s not our light, but the light of God shining through us.

So, my friends, no matter what we face in this life, God has given us unlimited resources to overcome. We don’t tell Him what to do or make Him our servant. We align ourselves with the will of God and stand on the promises of His word. We are here to bring glory to His name. We have the world’s best Papa.

Father I pray we come to You for our needs to be met. I ask that we see and embrace all that you have given us in your Son. You are awesome and mighty. You are a strong tower. You are the all sufficient One. Lead us, guide us, and set our affections solely on You. In Jesus most powerful name, Amen.

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New Series Coming!

Hey friends,

I’ve talked about relationships for quite some time now. I think we’ve covered everything. If not, shoot me a message, and we’ll cover it later.

This week I will start a new series called Identity in Christ. I’m excited. I believe it will help with some of the relational issues as well. Once we know who we are in Christ and fully accept the truth of our identity, dealing with other people becomes easier.

If you want a jump start on the series start reading the book of Ephesians.

Prayer to start us off:

Abba I pray for every person who reads this blog to have an encounter with You and Your truth. May we have a deeper understanding of all Jesus paid to give us, and help us walk in our true identities as co-heirs with Christ. In Jesus name, Amen.

If you’re interested in teachings about the Father, check out http://ithoughtiknewwhatlovewas.com. God=Love.