· My friend Deb wrote this today.. and it ministered to my heart.
· “The more I grow in Christ ...the more I realize that frustration has nothing to do with the churches we belong to, the husbands/wives we have...the kids we have been blessed with, or our jobs ............true frustration is about our heart ....and being and doing exactly what you are called to do and be ........you see often we try to squeeze in to the right mould .......when in fact its only what we think is the right mould ......but often its not the mould for us ....so we wrestle and struggle like the ugly sisters when the prince came around with the shoe ....desperate to make it fit ...when all along it belonged to some one else ..............if we find our selves frustrated ....lets pause and seek our hearts bless you all xxxx”
As I paused and thought about what she wrote, my heart was stirred up and I remember something I had been forgetting lately..so let me share!
THE SECRET OF CHANGED LIFE IS AN EXCHANGED LIFE...
Paul had this! In Philippians he writes 1:21... “For to me to live is Christ...”
He had experienced this exchanged life when he encountered the Lord...
John as well became a Christlike man because he had found the secret also! Christ was living in John in such a wonderful way that men would see only Christ and not the turbulent angry John... (Remember before Christ he was known as the ‘sons of thunder’ which means the sons of ‘rage’)
This is one of the basic truths of Christian faith; God is offering all that I need in every area of Christian experience... Not only is God giving that which makes me a Christian, he is also giving moment by moment and hour by hour, that which enables me to live the Christian life. I pray we will not be ignorant of this fact... As God’s desire is for His truth to set us free...
The truth when we first become a Christian, Jesus comes and lives in my heart in the person of the Holy Spirit... real Christianity is really Christ in you-ity... is the conscious sense of the presence of Christ that makes the real Christian life a thrilling and glorious adventure!
Now, when I see this added truth, that God’s wonderful love caused Him to send the risen Christ into my heart so that I might live through Him, a whole new conception of living is possible for me...I don’t have to struggle to behave like a saint, to put on an act and reach a high enough standard! God doesn’t expect me to “imitate Christ” or to “live for Christ!” Jesus said in John 3:6 “Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.”
So many of us struggle to make the flesh perform the works of the Spirit... the thing is impossible! God expects nothing of ‘me’ but failure because all I am is the flesh...
This thought can be a tremendous relief to some poor soul who is struggling so hard to live for Jesus – you never can! You never will!! All you can do is fail and experience the sorrow that Paul had...”For that which I do I allow not; for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I..............For the good that I would I do not; but the evil which I would not, that I do”.. Romans 7:15,19..
God want s me to avail myself of His full salvation – not only the ‘the act of Christ’ (Justification) when He died for me on the cross of Calvary, but also the “activity of Christ” (Sanctification) as He lives in my heart through His Holy Spirit ..
God’s salvation is not a place, or an experience, but a PERSON – His Son. Salvation is not a crisis which begins and ends at the cross; it is both a crisis which begins at the cross and a process which continues day by day as I recognize Christ dwelling in my heart...
This I believe is the secret of behaving like a saint not my putting on a tremendous performance of imitating Christ, but my recognizing that Gods salvation begins at the cross and that it continues throughout my life... “As His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue “2 Peter 1:3
ALL THINGS... I need for life and godliness...God has already given me all the things... not some, all that I need... in other words, if I want to behave like a saint I have all that it takes, not in my own resources or from my own worked up enthusiasm but as a gift from God. From the Agape of God... God has given me all things......... for living before men and for living before God.
Thank You Heavenly Father, for so great a salvation.. Thank you for the Lord Jesus who died on the cross so that my sins might be forgiven. Thank You also that the same Lord Jesus lives in my heart and life in the person of His Holy Spirit. Thank You, Lord Jesus, that You live in my heart.. Thank You because You are my peace.. You are my joy, You are my strength, You are all that I can ever need or want. You have promised never to leave me or forsake me – I believe this. Thank You for Your promises that never fail..
One joyful Christian is worth a thousand church members whose lives are as dull as the rest...(J Hunter)