NOT FORMULA BUT FOCUS – Part Two…


Spiritual Blog - Focus Not Formula

Psalm 34:1-3 – “I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul will make its boast in the LORD; The humble will hear it and rejoice. 3 O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.”  NASU

 Now, let’s move on to the second area of focus for victorious Christian living.

FOCUS ON GOD’S PROTECTION… 

In verse seven we are told that God’s angels encamp around the believer to protect them and rescues us from potential harm and destruction.  I suggest rereading Psalm 91 in connection with this passage.  The word Encamps means to set up for a place to abide or for a siege.  The word Rescues or Delivers means to equip for the fight and to strengthen.  So, God’s angels are encamped around us to protect us, give us a place to abide, and equip and strengthen us for the spiritual warfare coming our way.  Hallelujah!  Remember in 2 Kings 6:14-18 when Elisha’s servant was fearful, and Elisha comforted him saying, “there are more with us than with them.”  You are never outgunned and outmanned if you are resting in God!

I find it powerfully comforting and encouraging when I read the declaration of 2 Chronicles 16:9, “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is perfect Him.”  Those that are completely His are watched over and protected!  That is incredibly comforting and should embolden us mightily.  I read this and envision the Father waiting for a chance to bless us.  In Psalm 125:2 we discover, “As the mountains are round about Jerusalem so the Lord is round about His people from henceforth even for evermore.”  Hallelujah!

Hear me, Child of God, The Blood Covering cannot be penetrated!  We are Protected!  The devil cannot penetrate from the outside, the only way he can do harm to us is if we go out to him.  Stay in the Pavilion Tent!  Take to heart the directive of 1 Peter 5:8, “Be sober, be vigilant’ because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about seeking whom he may devour.”  Hear me carefully, he cannot devour us as long as we are in Christ.  Remember the childhood game of “May I” Well, tell the devil, NO YOU MAY NOT!

FOCUS ON GOD’S PROVISION… 

In verse 15 we read, “The eyes of the LORD are toward the righteous and His ears are open to their cry.”  In verse 19 we discover the reality that our lives will not be problem free and David says they will be many, but God delivers us from the ALL…  How many?  ALL…

I never try to convey to believers and especially new converts that their lives will be void of problems because they are Christians.  I usually tell them that just the reverse will be the case.  The righteous have problems often because we are imperfectly righteous.  We all have areas that need to be purged, purified, and we may need chastening to get rid of some dross that has left a residue in our hearts and minds.  I like the fact that Paul did not pretend that Christianity was problem free and he said in Acts 14:22, “…we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.”  But never forget that The Lord Delivers Us Out of All Those Trials, Troubles, and Tribulations.

James 1:2 encourages me and helps me to realize that if God has allowed the devil to tempt us it is cause for rejoicing.  If God did not consider us strong enough or dependent upon Him enough to withstand the temptation, He would not allow it to come.  No God does not tempt but sometimes, as with Job, He allows us to be tested.  When our faith is tried or tested it becomes stronger and we become more dependent upon our Creator.  We should rejoice in the victory and the Victor!

God is our source!  God has committed Himself through His Covenant and His Character to protect us.  He has made provision for us that we can come to spiritual maturity, have our needs supplied and have guidance for the path we are to travel.  Jesus promised to never leave us or forsake us.  We belong to God, we are the sheep of His pasture, we are overcomers through Him.  We can resist the devil and he has to flee.

Put this thought in your mind and meditate upon it daily and multiple times:

Angels Camp Around You.

Jesus’ Blood Surrounds You.

God’s Spirit Empowers You.

All Heaven Supports You.

God’s Resources Are Open to You.

Therefore, there is nothing and no one that can stop you!  Rehearse verse 4 and let that be your motto: “I sought, He heard, and He delivered.”   You can’t lose if its God you choose and self, refuse!

May the rich and bountiful blessings of our Lord be yours on this beautiful day!

 

NOT FORMULA BUT FOCUS…


Spiritual Blog - Focus

Psalm 34:1-3 – “I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth. 2 My soul will make its boast in the LORD; The humble will hear it and rejoice. 3 O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.”  NASU

I suggest reading the entire Psalm, but this text will give us the springboard to plunge into this thought that is echoing in my heart and mind.  This is an incredibly interesting Psalm, especially so, in light of my title for this devotional.  If that statement can be relied upon this Psalm is invaluable.

As I review what was happening at the time of this Psalm, I discover that David’s fortunes were at their lowest ebb.  He had fled from Saul who sought to take his life. He sought refuge with Achish but was disappointed.  He was now a fugitive, an outlaw, a dweller in the dens and caves of the earth.  What a picture of the future king of Israel and the man God said was a man after His own heart.  How low can one sink before they rise?  He does not yet have a large body of followers and I’m sure his heart and mind are wrestling with what he believed to be God’s purpose for his life.

Yet in all this, his praise is continually in his mouth.  The word continually must be understood as either every day or many times a day.  Here in the midst of incredible adversity, David’s focus is on the solution, not the situation!  How we fail on this point.  David saw the answer rather than the affliction.  He recognized God and His relationship with him.

If we, Christians, would give careful examination of this Psalm we would find an incredible secret or key to Spiritual Victory that many never find.  Unfortunately, a very large segment of professing Christians is suffering from a satanically inspired attitude problem.  What is that?  Defeatism and Negativism.  Their thinking suffers enormously, and their speaking reflects their thinking.  They live, think, and speak negatively, critically, and with a defeatist mentality.

There is great danger in focusing upon what the devil is doing rather than what God has done and is doing.  I have observed that there are times when people will unknowingly permit themselves to fall into the trap of the evil one and by doing so defeat their own purpose before it begins.  They have it backward and that is incredibly sad.

I have encountered people who spend a significant amount of their time wondering or fearing what the devil is going to do to them.  Fellow believers, we belong to God, the question is not what the devil is going to do to us, but what we, through the power of the Holy Spirit are going to do to him.

In verse one there is a major element in our victory.  That is to Focus on God in all things, at all times, and continually!  Psalm 100:4 instructs us to, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise.”  Focus on the Person of God, the Protection of God, the Provision of God, and the Power of God.  Those are elements that need to become a daily part of our lives.

GOD’S PERSON. 

He is the one and only one truly worthy of all praise!  David, in this Psalm, has begun to fill his thinking and his speaking with the victorious things of God.  In verses 3-7 he speaks of God’s Glory, not the devil’s work.  In verses, 4,10,15,19, he speaks of the Spiritual victory through God not the hindrances of the devil.  I am convinced that for any believer to enjoy the abundant life and total victory God desires for us we must see God correctly.  He is completely sovereign, the creator, and all powerful.  We must see ourselves correctly.  We are completely dependent on God for in Him we live and move and have our being.  We must see the relationship between God and man correctly.  We are Children of the Father!  Never forget that reality and truth!

In Romans 8:37 we are told that we overwhelmingly conquer through Jesus.  In 1 John 4:4 we are told that we are to live “as He is in this world.”  How is Jesus now?  He is victorious.  Who is God?  He is Father, Creator, Deliverer, Provider, Protector, and much, much, more.

I will pause here and pick this up in the next devotion as we focus beyond the Person of God to the Protection of God and His Provision.

God bless you as you enjoy the victories of this day in Jesus!

HE IS RISEN IS NOT THE FULL STORY…


Spiritual Blog - Risen

Matt 28:6 – “He is not here, for He has risen…”  NASU

Please don’t get me wrong, without the Resurrection the rest of the story would be meaningless.  It is not just an important part of God’s eternal plan for man but absolutely essential.  Paul made that clear in 1 Corinthians 5:17 when he declared that “if Christ has not been raised, your faith is worthless; you are still in your sins.”  Without the Resurrection, there is no Redemption.  That is a timeless fact and eternal truth!  To the Resurrection, I say, Hallelujah and Thank You!

But I suggest that the events leading up to the Resurrection are also vital ingredients in the Big Picture of God’s Plan for man and the Plan of Redemption.  Before the Resurrection could become a reality there had to have been the suffering of Jesus.  The Cross was the finale of His suffering.  It was gruesome and if we only view the Resurrection, as great and wonderful as that is, we sanitize the events that led to it.  We eliminate the suffering from our view and I believe that is a very grave mistake.  We need to be reminded of the suffering Savior as well as the risen Savior.

Before the Cross, there was the trial, the scourging, the stripes, the humiliation, the denouncement.  The evil of man’s heart was exposed and put on public display that should so horrify each of us that we weep.  Isaiah 52:1:4 informs us that in this event his appearance, visage, and form was marred beyond recognition.  He was brutally beaten, endured the strips on His back that left his skin hanging from his flesh when furrows were cut in His skin.  If I could coin a word worse than horrific I would use it to describe this scene.  Without these events, there could be no Resurrection.

Before the Cross and the Scourging, there was the sinless life He lived as He dismantled the devil’s claims on humanity.  He came as man for man and as the Last Adam defeated the devil and reclaimed mankind for the Father.  His sinlessness is critical.  In 2 Corinthians 5:21 we are reminded, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”  Jesus lived, as man and for man, in this corrupt depraved world and did it without sin!  That must never be forgotten.  Some sanitize and anesthetize this truth by arguing, as I’ve been told, “Well Jesus was God and I’m just human.”  Yes, He was all God and all man and His life on earth was lived as man for man to redeem man.  His victory over sin opens the door to our victory over sin and makes the way for God’s Kingdom to come and His will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven.

Before Jesus lived a sinless life, there had to be the Immaculate Conception and His birth from a virgin mother.  This is a vital truth without which there could have been no sinless life, no trial, scourging, judgment, crucifixion, and resurrection.

Before the conception and birth of Jesus, there was the Fall of Man in the Garden, the Promise of God of redemption, and the preservation of a line from which Jesus could come to redeem mankind.  It begins before Genesis 1:1 but our record of it begins there.  It began in the heart of God and God has systematically and carefully orchestrated the events to bring us to the place of the Resurrection and the revival of Hope for All.

Yet, if we conclude that the Resurrection and only look back to the pathway leading us to that point in history we miss the eternal impact of what has happened.  We must look forward to the Ascension, the fulfillment of His Promise to send Another Comforter and infuse us with the Power and Authority of God to destroy the works of the devil.  We must look to the eternal redemption of all who will come to Him and receive Him as their Savior and Lord.

Resurrection Day speaks volumes to my heart and as I think of Him rising from the dead and the horror in the minds of the hordes of hell at that happening, I rejoice!  When I think of all that led up to the Cross I shudder and weep in amazement of just how deeply the Father loves us.  When I think of the Ascension I am comforted and reminded of Jesus’ words in John 14:1-14, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.”

Yes, we should rejoice in His Resurrection and allow the hope of our own Resurrection overflow in our hearts.  Yet, we must never forget His Suffering, His Life, and His Purpose.  We were not born just to mark time until we get to heaven.  We were born to do the works that He did and greater works.  We were born to destroy the works of the devil.  The Resurrection speaks of the Power of God alive and active in today’s world and in our own lives.  It is time to not only hear the Words of Truth but to Act upon them.  It is time to rise from the ashes of life and live like the Bible is the Truth, because it is.

God bless you as you celebrate the Resurrection today!  Have a fantastic Sunday!

YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO GOD…


Spiritual Blog - Man

Psalm 8:3-4 – “When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained; 4 What is man that You take thought of him, and the son of man that You care for him?”  NASU

I never cease to be amazed at the Love God has for man and in the Book of Psalms, we encounter so many revelations of incredible truths regarding God’s care and keeping of man.  There are truths that leap off the page and excite the heart exploding in a new sense of spiritual power as we meditate on the Psalms.  I recommend them daily!  When we invest our time in the Psalms we come away with a new awareness of the Majesty of the Almighty and the incomprehensible Love He has for His creation.

Here in Psalm 8, David gives us an infusion of Hope and a sense of Security as Children of God.  In verse one he cries out, “O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth…”  He recognizes the sovereignty, power, and longsuffering of God.  In verse one through three he draws our attention to God in His Glory, God’s Incredible Work, and God’s Infinite Power.

In verse four he draws a contrast between God and man.  In comparison to God, man seems so small and insignificant.  Man appears utterly helpless, frail, and almost useless.  In contrast to God’s Glory, Majesty, Power, and Perfection, man seems completely and hopelessly imperfect.  In contrast to God’s creation, he asks, “What is Man?”  Why would the Creator God even care about such a puny creature as man?

It is extremely easy for any of us to feel the unworthiness of humanity.  If we allow that to thrive and expand it will cause us to develop a morbid sense of our unimportance, worthlessness, and hopelessness.  But, and that is the key.  But, in God’s eyes, you are important and far more important than you think, and the devil tries to convince you.

One thing that every person needs to know in the face of trial, tribulation, temptation, or persecution is – “We Are Important to God!”  We are important enough for Him to care for us and provide for our wellbeing.  I ask that you join me in considering the Worth of man to God.

  • Man is More Valuable Than All the Creatures of the Earth.

In Genesis 1:26, man was given dominion over creation, none of God’s created beings other than man have souls, and the animals and plants become sources of food, service, and use for man.  You are more valuable than the sparrows that God cares for or the lilies of the field.

  • Man is Created in the Image and Likeness of God.

We are the reflection of God and included in our earthly assignment is to manifest Him.

  • The Soul of Man Is Worth More Than the Earth Itself.

Jesus’ words in Matthew 16:26 bring understanding.  He said, “For what is a man profited if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?”  Our Creator has ascribed unparalleled worth to man’s soul.  God, who created us knows every detail of our lives, character, makeup, and being.  He values man as His highest creation and created us for fellowship with Him.

  • Man Is Important Enough for God to be Willing to See Christ’s Blood Shed.

Need I point to any other passage but John 3:16 and Romans 5:8?  God loved us so much that He gave His only begotten Son for us.  He has commended His love toward us, while we were yet in sin, allowing Jesus to die for us.  He has provided Redemption for man if we will only receive it.  He made that incredible sacrifice to purchase us back from the powers of darkness.

  • Man Is Important Enough for Jesus to Return for Us.

John 14 should calm all our fears and concerns.  Jesus is coming back for those who wait for, walk after, and watch for Him.  I urge you to consider the provisions of God.  You may feel inferior, unimportant, insignificant, worthless, hopeless, and helpless, but GOD Values You Highly!  You are Worth the Blood of Jesus, to Him!

We have nothing to fear because God is for us.  We have no reason to worry because God is our Provider.  We need to remember that according to the Word of God we are Royalty.  We are God’s Children!  According to Matthew 10:28-31 we are more valuable than anything God created.  We can cast all our care on Him because He cares for us.  We are heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus.  Settle it in your heart – You Are Important to God!

Never again, look at yourself as being without value, that is an insult to the Father and to trample on the Blood of Jesus.  He died that we might live!

God bless you as you enjoy this wonderful day in Him!

WANTED – A Liar – (Part Two) …


Spiritual Blog - Lies

1 Kings 22:8 – “The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the LORD, but I hate him, because he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil. He is Micaiah son of Imlah.” But Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.”  NASU

 Let’s continue with our consideration of embracing the Liar and the Lie.  I suggest that although Ahab preferred to hear the lies of his chosen prophets, he knew that in order to have the needed support of Jehoshaphat he had to consent to his request.

Ahab dispatched a servant to Micaiah and was desperate to keep the prophet out of trouble.  He said, “The King’s prophets speak good with one voice.  You do the same; there is no use antagonizing him.  He is going to do as he pleases anyway.  All you will do by speaking the truth is get yourself in deep trouble.”  

Micaiah’s response is, just as timely today as it was then.  His answer gave the whole duty of the prophet in any age.  He was not there to abuse, bemean, or to say unkind things.  My purpose is not to abuse anyone.  It is not my desire to entertain anyone in my speaking the truth of God.  It is not my intent or purpose to force anyone to accept my message.  I am just the messenger the response is totally up to the hearer.

What is the Business or Responsibility of the Messenger?  Micaiah’s response was, “As the Lord lives, what the Lord speaks to me, that will I speak.”  He was defining his purpose.  It was not to declare that which was popular or pleasing to the natural ego but the truth for the purpose of redemption.  It is one thing to simply speak the truth and another to speak the truth with a heart of compassion and with redemption in mind.

Here is where the difficulty came into focus.  When the Truth meets the Lie, conflict is inevitable.  Micaiah informed Ahab that the enterprise would end in disaster.  He informed Him that God would not back his play and that the path he had chosen was the wrong path.  That is a powerful word and Micaiah was taking his life in his own hands in telling the truth.

Ahab responded as would be expected.  He became angry and had the prophet put in prison.  The foolishness of that response is clear.  If Micaiah’s prophecy was accurate, putting him in prison would not change it.

Let me illustrate it this way.  When Galileo startled the world by saying that the earth moved around the sun instead of the converse, his saying that did not make the earth move nor did it stop when he recanted.  Columbus’ declaration that the earth was round did not make it round.  Newton’s discovery of the Law of Gravity did not put that law in motion.  They were saying what was not causing it to happen.  Ahab’s course of action was utter foolishness.  He appeared to think that he could change the truth into a lie by ignoring the truth.

If we follow Ahab’s philosophy and our car engine begins to pound, the oil gauge reading no oil pressure, then we would simply smash the gauges or lights or put tape over them and all would be will.  You cannot cure a fever by throwing the thermometer in the trash.  You cannot reduce your weight by smashing the scales. If something is true it will remain true regardless of your reaction to it.  Your benefit or difficulty depends on your reaction to the truth.

Remember Naaman being sent to see Elisha?  The prophet told him how to be cured of his leprosy.  Naaman had his own preconceived ideas about what should happen, and his inflated self-worth made him angry at Elisha’s nonchalance toward him.  He had decided that the prophet would come out with pomp and ceremony and lay his hands on him or wave his hands over the leprosy and cure it.  Elisha told him to go dip seven times in the Jordan river.  Naaman got angry and begin to drive off in a huff.  His anger did not cure him.  Only when he obeyed the truth and followed the directive of God’s prophet did he find healing.

If a preacher tells you the truth it will remain true whether you accept it or not.  It remains true whether you go away rejoicing or rejecting.  Ahab went on his way disregarding the words of the prophet who told him the truth. He chose to do what he wanted to do and placed his confidence in the lies.  However, it is clear that he did not totally trust them because he disguised himself going into battle and took an action that left Jehoshaphat out to dry and placed him in danger.  Disguised as a common soldier he was hit at random by an arrow and died.

This lover of lies met his doom.  I urge everyone to seek Truth even if it is hard to receive and cuts to the foundation of our being.  When we confess our sins, God is just and faithful to forgive.  If we hide our sins, we bring about our own destruction.  Remember, the Truth is what makes us Free!

God bless you as you enjoy this day in Jesus!

 

WANTED – A Liar…


Spiritual Blog - Liars

1 Kings 22:8 – “The king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is yet one man by whom we may inquire of the LORD, but I hate him, because he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil. He is Micaiah son of Imlah.” But Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say so.”  NASU 

I find this story both amusing and powerful.  It is a uniquely human story.  Here, Jehoshaphat, the King of Judah was paying a visit of state to Ahab, the King of Israel.  Ahab saw the visit as an excellent opportunity for him to acquire the services of Jehoshaphat in his quest to capture Ramoth-Gilead.  Jehoshaphat was not against this action but because he was a religious man he desired to know the will of God in the matter.  A truly committed person wants to hear from God.

I find it somewhat surprising that Ahab offered no resistance.  It appears that he anticipated Jehoshaphat’s request and had prepared for it in advance.  He called for 400 of his prophets and put the question to them, “Shall I go up to Ramoth-Gilead to battle or shall I forbear?”  Not surprisingly, his prophets or puppets as it would seem in unison said, “Go up; for the Lord will shall deliver it into the hands of the King!”

On the surface that would be impressive.  After, all 400 prophets all agreeing and giving the green light for the military action.  However, Jehoshaphat was not fully satisfied.  I believe that he sensed something amiss.  These prophets were Ahab’s own and they were far more interested in pleasing the king that God.  They were far more eager to speak the positive and popular thing to the king rather than the truth.

Jehoshaphat asked, “Is there not here a prophet of the Lord besides, that we may inquire of him?”  One would have suspected Ahab to be offended at the request but evidently not.  He said, “There is yet one-man Micaiah, the son of Imlah, but I hate him; for he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil.” 

That is an amazing statement and I believe it is a clear confession of Ahab of at least three things that I would like to open for your consideration.

  • It Is a Confession That He Does Not Believe His Own Prophets.

He wanted to but something inside knew that his ‘yes’ men were not being fully forthcoming and were being self-serving. 

  • It Is a Confession of His Faith in Micaiah.

He hated him because he told the truth and the truth did not often favor Ahab, but he knew that Micaiah spoke only what he heard from God.

  • By His Statement, He is Acknowledging That He Prefers Those Who are Flatters to One Who Speaks Truth.

The apparent requirement to be in Ahab’s favor was to speak what the king wanted to hear, even if it was a lie.

That brings me to the thought that I want to present, and it may be somewhat painful if we are honest and open in our consideration.  Ahab is not the only person that likes to be lied to. Most of us have argued that we hate to be lied to, but is that the truth?  I believe that Ahab’s condition is one that is not uncommon to many people and maybe most people.  We want to hear what is pleasing and favorable to us.  A Lie, in certain situations, has its appeal.  The Lie of Genesis that brought about the downfall of man in sin has been embraced from generation to generation.

One Reason the Liar Has a Measure of Popularity is That He Uses Flattery.

Before you protest too much, have you ever enjoyed hearing flattery?  All of us like compliments and I suggest that we like them even if we know they are not the truth. We prefer that the compliments be sincere and given wisely and tastefully but we like them!  Often, people like them so much they fail to scrutinize them too closely.

Let me give an illustration that highlights what I am contending.  There was a man who declared that he did not like being complimented.  He made his boast that he lived above the possibility of being flattered.  One day a young book salesman who was aware of this man’s aversion to flattery came into the man’s office.  He told the man that the characteristic that he admired about him above all else was the fact that he could not be flattered.  The outcome of the interview was the man became so puffed up with his delight over the salesman’s compliments that he bought the book.

The Liar Appeals to Us by Strengthening Us in Our Decisions to Do as We Please.

Ahab had already made up his mind and the liars were appealing to his predetermined decision to go into battle.  It is always flattering to hear from others that our decision is the right one, even if it is wrong.

The Liar Helps Us Become Comfortable While We Are Doing as We Please.

It is very difficult to be completely comfortable while we are doing what we know is or may be wrong.  The Bible says, “There is no peace for the wicked.”  We like to be made comfortable and the liar helps us achieve that sense of security and comfort.

I have more to say on this and hopefully, it is touching a redemptive cord in your hearts as it is in mine.  We will pause here and pick this up in the next devotional.

God bless you as you enjoy His blessings on this beautiful day He has made.

 

FOUR NECESSITIES FOR SERVICE – Part Two.


Spiritual Blog - Service

Matthew 16:24-27 – “Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.  25 “For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.  26 “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?  27 “For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and WILL THEN REPAY EVERY MAN ACCORDING TO HIS DEEDS.”  NASU

 

As we resume on consideration of the Four Necessities for Service I want you to recall that we consider the Necessity of Love and the Necessity of Faith.  Both are indispensable in our Spiritual Walk and both are powerful weapons in God’s hands in our lives. Now I want us to move on to the third necessity.

INVOLVEMENT IS NECESSARY. 

In James 1:22 we read, “But be ye doers of the word, not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.”  That is a powerful statement and expresses the desire of God for involvement and action in our lives.  I’ve had people tell me that they don’t have time to work for God and because of their many obligations they do not want to be involved in the work of God.  I suggest that you are already involved.  The question is not your involvement but your level of involvement.

I contend that because of the experience of the New Birth or Salvation you are a member of the Body of Christ and that involves you.  You have a mandate from heaven to be involved.  You have received and are to share what you have received.  God has no silent partners or secret service followers.  He has members of the Body of Christ and as a member of that Body, you have a function, a role, and an assignment.  Jesus said in John 14:15, “If you love me, keep my commandments.”  That was not optional! It is not an accessory you can add to your experience or omit.  It is a clear directive!  Because of your relationship with Him, you are a target of hell, so you might as well get involved and learn to use the weapons of warfare afforded to you.

DETERMINATION IS NECESSARY. 

I am reminded of the account in Genesis 32:24-26, “Then Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him until daybreak. 25 When he saw that he had not prevailed against him, he touched the socket of his thigh; so the socket of Jacob’s thigh was dislocated while he wrestled with him. 26 Then he said, “Let me go, for the dawn is breaking.” But he said, ” I will not let you go unless you bless me.”  What a revelation of the requirement and need for determination.  Jacob could have given up and missed the incredible blessing of God, the change of nature and name.

Love may motivate us and place a desire in our hearts to do something, but unless we have determined to do it we will never achieve the desired objective.  We are in this race and it is not a sprint it is a marathon.  The beginning is without value if we fail to finish.  It means nothing if we run in a marathon and drop out of the race at any point in the race.

Paul finished his course.  Jesus cried, “It is Finished!”  Jacob refused to let go.  Elisha would accept nothing less than a double portion.  What is your level of determination?  How much of God do you desire!  Love will motivate us to trust and become engaged in the service of the Lord.  The knowledge of what God can do and His love for man will enable us to develop a determination that will make it impossible for us to be satisfied with less than God’s Perfect Will in our lives.  We are “more than conquerors through Christ.”  

It is my hope and prayer that you are motivated to allow the Love of God to be shed abroad in your heart so dramatically that it overflows!  I pray that you are motivated to seek Him through His word and invest your trust completely in Him and allow Faith to grow in your heart and be manifest in your life powerfully.  I pray that your desire to be Involved will grow exponentially and you will become Determined that you will run this race to the finish and never give up.

Remember the promise of Galatians 6:9, “And let us not grow weary in doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.”  You are on the winning team so jump into the battle and become all that God has desired and designed you to be.

May the rich and bountiful blessings of our Lord be upon you this wonderful day!