Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Genuine Believing


In our home we have several items that produce heat. There is the furnace, the stove, the fireplace, lightbulbs, matches, my computer cord are just a few. In the middle of winter with temperatures as low as 5 or 10 below, it would be not the best choice to choose matches or lightbulbs as a source of heat. To really do the job with the greatest impact would be to choose the right source of heat. In life there are a lot of ways to believe, but only one way releases the power of God. It is by way of the faith of Jesus Christ. We should not be content with lightbulbs or matches, they can’t even warm a piece of pie! I’ve sat in a few pews that were chilly, but thankfully things of God are by free-will choice! When it comes to spiritual heat, I like nuclear!

In the Old Testament men and women of God could believe God. Abraham was called the father of believing. Old Testament believers such as Nehemiah, Joshua and Deborah could believe by taking action to stand for God. Today we can too by making a decision to love God and act accordingly. In addition we live in the grace administration today whereby it is available to have the inner spiritual development of the faith of Jesus Christ. On the Day of Pentecost God made it available to believing people to receive His power within. Faith was made available through Jesus Christ.
Galatians 3:22-26, 22But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. 23But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. 24Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.25But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. 26For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
It is important to distinguish between these two words ‘faith’ and ‘believing’ even though they are both translated from the same Greek word ‘pistis’. It takes looking at the context to distinguish what is meant. If we examine the word ‘belief’ in various contexts, it can mean many different things.  It could mean tenet, doctrine, persuasion, opinion, thought, confidence, view as well as many other things. Context is important.
Faith of Jesus Christ involves the death, resurrection power, ascension and sitting down at the right hand of God making available the outpouring of holy spirit. Believing involves accepting that power and acting to bring that power into manifestation in life’s situations helping others as well as ourselves as God energizes.

I can believe to light a match, turn on the stove or flip the switch on the furnace. It's my choice. The results will be contingent on what I choose. I prefer the furnace cause it keeps me in all situations winter or summer everyday of the week 24/7. God is a 24/7 God.  His love is constant and meets all my needs and keeps the fires burning everyday  with purpose. Thank God for His son and the freedom to choose!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Leaders

Leaders inspire people that is why they are called leaders. It is as simple as that.  No fancy titles, no lofty elitism, stiff respect or futile fawning. Leadership is a quality not a title. It is a living breathing component or characteristic of people who are led by something greater than themselves. In the Bible the greatest leaders were those who loved God and believed Him, people like Joseph, Debra, Nehemiah, Mordecai, and ultimately Jesus Christ.

The word ‘inspiration’ comes from a word meaning 'to breathe in'. When we breathe oxygen into our bodies, it is sent to our cells and when combined with food produces energy which is vital to the activity of the body. Oxygen is an essential ingredient required to keep the body fired up. So is inspiration to the mind.

Inspiration is quite different from authority. Inspiration provides the essential component for action. It stimulates action. Authority is positional and it is the right to control, command or  determine what’s what. Paul was an example of a man who had authority. He was:
 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; (Phil 3:5)
He was a member of the Sanhedrin. He had position upon position. When he came to the realization that it was not what his heart was about, he gave all up and became the true leader of the first century church. God was able to work in him to set down the heart of the mystery as a result of the resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ. The Word of God in the seven church epistles is inspiring to every individual who sees himself in them and wants to help others see all they could be in Christ. He became a man of inspiration and still is today.

In Acts 15 we see a great example of Paul’s leadership characteristics. He just doesn’t back away from standing up for the church that God had established in the grace administration. He boldly communicated his heart in the conflict about circumcision. He communicated with James, the Jerusalem saints and Peter and held the line on what was dragging the newly formed church down in their thinking and in their exercising of positional authority rather than the heart of the mystery.

Jesus Christ’s life was an inspiration. He trained the twelve, he sent them out, he sent out the seventy. He taught and led, and sent. His first Words to Peter and Andrew were “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” Following and leading go hand in hand and are mutually dependent on each other as they interchange according to the circumstances. All of us are leaders in some form or another, be it as, friends moms, dads, husbands, wives, or workers in any capacity of life.

I love the quote John Quincy Adams quote,  “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
”

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

By their fruits you shall know them



A friend of mine whom I have known through the years has a knack of knowing just the right time to call me.  She believes and loves God and has a way of putting the Word straight in front of my heart. Sometimes when I’m being a knucklehead, my husband says to call her because he knows she’ll straighten me out. We both have been so blessed by her life. This lady loves God’s word and she truly manifests God’s love because of it.

We live in a world that is full of challenges, but God provided His Word, His son, and His holy spirit in us to help us through its hills and valleys. We need others that love us enough to really care for our hearts and we need to do that for others.

 ‘What the world needs now is love, sweet love… ♪♫♪♫’. It is God’s love that is so genuine and exactly hits the mark. It is based on the renewed mind  which is fed by the spirit of God. There’s no mistaking God’s heart. Human love is quite different. Human beings can love but without God it is very ordinary. Human love can invite a boatload of problems at times, especially when people have a lot of fear behind it. For example, too much human love can smother or spoil and cause all sorts of unnecessary evil. Too little can harden or confuse or discourage. So how can you tell the difference?
18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love. I John 4:18
 Matthew 7:16-17a , 16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? 17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; 
  Fruit are the results of  actions. God’s love edifies and produces fruit. There is no mistaking it when you are the object of that love. It hits exactly on what you need. It does not cause strife, jealousy and confusion. Decisions based on God’s standard and urging have so much impact that one just bubbles over with the same kind of love to others.
 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. James 3:17
Fruits are manifested by actions. When humans love with the love of God,  they manifest God’s wisdom and the results are amazing!  It is how the family of God is supposed to live together.