Her life was full and beautiful. God brought her through every trial and illness. God gifted her marriage to my father with His love and peace. God gifted her with girls who loved her even when not on one accord; and who loved God deeply.
One thing is for sure … her #1 love — The Lord. And because His gift is eternal life – I just know she is rejoicing!!
I was watching one of the awards shows and it amazed me to hear a few of them who have said that they are believers in Christ say that the glory belongs to God. Well, I could start off saying that they were dressed half naked and using profanity at the same time … but let me move on. Looking at them reminded me that all of us who say we are believers in the Almighty God are surrounded in this earthly realm with many who do not really believe. Because we are in a realm where it is believed that saying “God” is powerful enough, we can be lulled into a sense of complacency. We sometimes are led to believe that all we have to do is call upon the name of Jesus, and all will be well … forgetting that the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the base of all that we say that we are. Christ’s death and His resurrection is the base of Christianity; without this base our hopes are no more!
Allowing the world system to step into our minds and hearts will leave us thinking that it doesn’t matter what other people believe AND that it is not our business to ‘push Christ on them’! But if we believe, REALLY believe, that Christ is who He says He is and who God says He is; that He died and was raised to the end that our victory has been secured, then we must also know that there is no more worthy thing we can do but work fervently, passionately and full throttle for His Kingdom!
We cannot merely accept the idea of His resurrection – we have to let it become a heart belief!
If you really believe in the power of His resurrection – don’t waver; don’t be discouraged … work passionately for the Kingdom of God, Our Father!
Unless you believed in vain … be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil (labor) is not in vain in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:2,58
Father, please help me to go hard after the things that build Your Kingdom. Help me to love so that people are drawn to You. Help me to be bold about the ONLY truth. Help me to remember at what price You secured me for Your own purposes. And let me not be weary in well doing! Amen
Many find comfort in these words – but for me, they can cause angst. It’s the word “let” that causes problems for me. I mean, what am I supposed to do when the trials and problems of life really do give me pause or cause me to have fear?
I know – I know – I know what you Christian folk are saying, “Jan! take the thought captive, bring the thought into submission with the will of God!” Trust me – I KNOW!! But that word “let” still gives me a lump in my throat.
I joyfully minister to many. There are issues where the money is just not nearly enough to meet the obligation. There are issues where the illness cannot be defeated. Marriages that are dying. Loss of loved ones that cause family issues in the midst of grief. OR – Maybe your life is on course and you are not only joyful but prosperous. That is what I tell myself when I encounter people who tell me not to allow myself to worry. I say to myself that they have no idea what it is like to be in my shoes! What about you!?
Well, I Thank God for His Word! These words were spoken by the very Son of God, and knowing that Jesus said the words tells me that it really is possible for me to disallow my heart from fainting at the first sign of trouble.
I go on to read Christ’s words in Matthew 24 as he describes the perilous times the world will face but he reminds those that follow Him that they are not alone. And then I remember that the Word of God gave me another “let” that gives me power and strength – “Let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:5)– and as I continue to read His Word and allow Him to speak to me I am reminded that if I have the mind of Christ I cannot be troubled for it is against the mind of Christ for me to have a troubled heart or mind even when all around me seems full of trouble. Then I remember that He also told me that if I could only remember at all times that He has already overcome the world – I will know that I too will overcome.
Now, let me say that my heart began to feel lighter and the lump in my throat was less uncomfortable. Let me also be clear that though my situation may not have changed – I am hopeful, truly, that He desires to, and will indeed, work it all out for my good and for His glory. So today, you know – later on after I start thinking about my trouble again – the moment it seems that my heart just might faint, I will not let my heartbe troubled, instead I will start singing, clapping, dancing and praising Him in advance of my deliverance! As I praise – it will lift my heart from trouble to a place of triumph and I will not be able to stop myself from rejoicing.
Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled! As my mama always told me, “Just trust in the Good Lord!”
His word and commandments and expectations are clear – but knowing we are out of compliance causes us to question – in the name of clarification.
When is a fetus a person?
Is there a difference between kill & murder?
If I accidentally pick up the pen from someone’s desk and later discover it, is it theft?
They live across an ocean, do they qualify as my neighbor?
I am moved to conviction in my heart as I see us asking God for “clarification” when we really want exoneration! We are called and commanded to love – yet, I see so much hate in the church (the Body of Christ) directed toward the world. Asking God for direction is one thing, but seeking our own spiritual loopholes is another matter altogether.
Purge our hearts, O Lord! Make us to see ourselves in the light of Your holiness, though we dodge the truth. Give us Your own conviction and help us to stand firm in obedience to all that you have said, avoiding the need to justify our sin. Cleanse us and make us whole and complete so that we can move toward experiencing the abundant life that is only found in You!!!
To be sinless is impossible for us in this human form — but we can attain to godliness, moral purity and agape love. Our allegiance to the King of Kings demands utter devotion to Him and radical love toward people. He tells us to be perfect – not in vanity; not walking in our own righteousness. He tells us as children of God, who understand our complete reliance on Him, that we should endeavor to carry about His image in a worthy manner.
We have to keep our moral compass before us at all times; not straying to the right or left. We’ve got to keep Calvary before us to remind us of the extend of the love that has been shown toward us. Why? So that we will show others true love — the love of Christ.
The Savior is telling us once again to imitate Him — to be like Him — to conform to His likeness. We are admonished toward purity and love. What does it look like? Keeping our word; returning good for evil; praying for all people – especially for those who do not know Him; love those who are not like us – ethnicity, political party, denomination and more; extend to others grace and mercy – as it has been extended to us … and So Much More! Our lives should be such a reflection of Him that they can see Him in us everywhere we go!
I do pray that Our Father will show us the way to godliness. We strive to get there through rules; but the truth that we know is that this is a matter of the heart. If we ask Him sincerely, He will place within us a desire to love people as He has loved us. Sinless perfection is only found in Christ! God can help us to live in perfect love in this world. He can help us to choose to keep our hands cleand and our hearts pure …. just cry out to him and He can and will truly lead and guide you.
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.--Romans 8:38-39