God is the one who began this good work in you, and I am certain that he won’t stop before it is complete on the day that Christ Jesus returns.
So what is this “good work” God has begun in me that I read about in the book of Philippians? Paul tells me it will be completed ON the day that Christ Jesus returns and that “God” is The One who began that good work and “God” will be The One to complete that good work in me.
2 Corinthians 5:17
New Living Translation
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
Ok…that makes it easy to figure out then that “the Good Work” began at salvation and will be completed when I am with Christ in eternity. Pretty clear to me the good work He has begun has zero, notta, absolutely nothing, to do with my capabilities as a human or my talents or lack of talents. But it has everything to do with God and who He is.
As christians, The Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ are at work as One God within us. It isn’t about me or you or our lives. It’s about how God wants our lives to be finished in Him.
Most of my christian walk I have spent trying to find God’s will for my life. I have lived trying to always be the perfect christian trying to please and gain the approval of a perfect God by how I was serving Him. That my friends, I now know, is an impossible unrealistic and sinfully selfish viewpoint I held. It was a complete mask of deception. I had unknowingly at that time made my walk all about me. But it “Ain’t About Me” and it never was nor will it ever be.
While my intentions may have been good my viewpoint was very misguided. I deceivingly thought of God as this Commander in Chief who was trying to put together an army of perfect children who would perfectly obey all His rules and do as He required in His manual. Afterall, that was what pleased Him. That was what I thought what I was tricked in my mind to believe. Can I now tell you what happened at the end of that soldier’s service? That soldier found herself completely exhausted, burnt out and trapped in the darkness of a deep depression. She was pouring herself out every moment of every day, serving and doing everything in the name of the Lord. So she believed. She took on every Church task that came her way and before long she completely burned herself out. She just wanted to serve God with all her heart, soul mind and strength. She wanted to please Him and be used greatly by Him with her gifts and talents. All of that sounded good right? But her heart was being greatly deceived. She was believing a bald face lie. At the discovery of that lie, she looked and saw herself and who she was trying to be and how she was trying to serve to gain God’s love and approval. She never felt good enough in herself. She had never known a love like God’s before and didn’t believe she deserved to have it…that soldier…She became ill from trying to earn God’s love in her own strength because God’s love is a free gift that requires we do nothing for it. This burnt out soldier found she was of no use for anyone. Most especially, she was of no use for The God she loved and longed to serve. Her service was found to be in vain. The lie she discovered was her serving her own ideas of how the manisfestation of God should be happening in her life…instead of just serving for God’s ideal happening of His manisfestation she was hindering herself and her walk with God. The lie was it was truly all about her and what “she” wanted God’s will to be in her life not about God’s will period.
God doesn’t want perfect soldiers He wants children. Children that love Him because He first loved them. Children with whom He can sanctify and grow the relationship between them into complete oneness with Himself. He wants children who will surrender over their wills to become His will. He is the only, One True God, who can lovingly and who purposefully can reflect His character to the world through them. God wants us to come to Him like little children, selflessly abandoned to a complete dependence on Him.
In other words, God does not wish us to hinder ourselves, seeking grandiose ideas of ways we want Him to use us. Rather, God, wants us to humble ourselves and surrender to His ideas of “However” and “Whatever” way His will is to be done. He wants for us to join Him there. He isn’t seeking our perfection but He is seeking to make us more and more One in relation to Him, which leads us to becoming more and more Holy and perfected in His likeness.
What has this soldier learned… I have learned that this christian life is a journey. One that the scriptures say will not be completed until the Day that Jesus Christ returns. I have learned God created us for a purpose and that purpose is that we worship and glorify Him…for who He is… and for “whose” we have been chosen to be.
I can see today, the journey without the lies. I can see that when we selflessly serve Him without restrictions or ideas then we are perfectly accomplishing His will. And it’s then I know… it’s not about me!
There is no greater love than this…For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life. This is the love of The Father for you and for me. I pray you will watch with your eyes and listen with your heart the message of love God has for you in this video.
When I think back on the relationships I have struggled with, for most of them, misunderstandings were the culprits of the road blocks that stood in the way of that relationship moving forward. So for one to have a misunderstanding I think it is logical to say there had to be a lack of understanding at work.
Urban dictionary defines “MISUNDERSTANDING” this way…
“When two people try pursuing a relationship and run into a roadbump where one knows what’s going on and the other is confused and could jump to conclusions. A lot of relationships end like this sadly.”
In order to remove the road block of misunderstanding three letters must be removed from the scene…MIS. Those three letters when removed leave you with “Understanding”. With “understanding” mountains can be moved. Reconciliation can happen. Let’s look closer at what “understanding” means…
Let us look to Urban Dictionary again, as it words it better than I ever could.
“Understanding…This is the main objective of both sides of every story. Each story shall equally be relevant and important. Understanding is imperative, one shall not be allowed to step on another as he or she pleases and get away with it. It doesn’t matter who was right, or wrong. The main objective today is understanding. We are imperfectly made, but our God given strength is understanding, love. If both of you come to an understanding, both shall be at peace. Fighting, revenge, bickering, provoking violence and anger will not work. Adding fuel to fire isn’t favorable.
Do not let yourself be trapped in misunderstandings and hate…
Understanding…get along with everyone, try not to make waves.
Try to find the good in all situations, no matter how hard or challenging. Be kind and care for those who have had it hard,
Try understanding, walk a mile in their shoes.
Love the ones close to you as if it might be the last day you ever see them.
You can do all things thru Christ our load who strenghtens us.”
Wisdom brings understanding. Understanding comes with wisdom. Where do we gain wisdom? Let’s go to the word of God for this answer.
Are there relationships in your life that have hit a road bump? Is there conflict unresolved? Does confusion surround you like a dark cloud? I ask the question, Are you seeking wisdom and understanding regarding the other person? Have you done everything possible to remove those three tiny letters of “mis” out of that roadblock. Seeking to understand the feelings of others is not always easy. But with the wisdom from the Lord, and His understanding working through you, and the other person nothing is impossible. With both parties seeking to understand the other it becomes a win-win situation for that relationship to be reconciled. It begins with you and with me being willing to take that first step to remove that block out of the way. Understanding is the gateway to love.
“Pretending to be happy when you’re alone is an example of how strong you are as a person.
Take care of your thoughts when you’re alone. And take care of your words when you’re with people. We are all so much together but we are all dying of loneliness.”
– Albert Schweitzer
The struggle I face the most is the loneliness of living alone. I remember in my thirties thinking I just want to be alone. Life was chaotic and I just wanted peace and quiet. Solitude was what I thought I wanted. Be careful what you wish for right?
Loneliness happens when you realize the relationships in your life aren’t fulfilling to you. When sudden life changes leave you going to bed and waking up all by yourself. You become lonely. All you begin to hunger for is just someone to enjoy the day with. Someone to talk to. Somebody to go to an event with. A companion to travel a cruise with. Someone to go watch a movie or shop a flea market with. Someone to come over for dinner and a movie. All your heart wants is someone to talk to and share your life with…but there is no one there. Not one person for you.
The reality is most times weeks will go by and not one conversation even happens outside of you and your furr baby. You give invites to friends and family even offering to pay their way only to be told sorry we are busy and can’t make it. Perhaps even worst is you get no reply back from them at all. Ouch! A simple “No” would have been considered a conversation to you. Afterall, it would have been interaction you had not had in a while.
You begin to isolate yourself even more. You go further into depression…further into feeling unloved. You sense rejection at every turn. Yes, living alone hurts and it is no joke.
A recent study from the HRSA.gov website says 1 out of 3 people today live alone. That’s staggering when you think about it…
Loneliness effects health and mental well being. When you begin to have health issues that hinders you from being as active or even driving places alone you feel defeated. A loss of your independence to living life has happened. We want to live life like everyone else. We want to go out and enjoy a concert or movie but no one you know is available to assist and attend with you.
That’s the moment when your mind starts lying to you telling you that no one wants to be with you. No one really cares about you. You could die in your sleep but would anyone care? These become the familiar voices you hear in your head day after day. Night after night as you eat alone. As you crawl into bed alone. Some days you don’t want to shower or dress because you don’t see any reason too. Afterall, you aren’t going anywhere. No one will see you. Day after day there is no one who checks in. You begin to fear the “what if’s”…”what if” a medical emergency happens, and “what if” no one finds you until it’s too late. “What if” I fell and broke my hip or “what if” I suffered a stroke and I couldn’t talk or move? How long would I lay on the floor before I died or how long before I was rescued? Will the floor be my final resting place where I take my last breath? These are not feelings of self pity here these are the “what if” feelings of the fearful reality for seniors and singles who live alone every single day. The 1 out of 3 who don’t have regular close relationships with family and friends for whatever reason.
If this is you like it is me…now is the time to grasp your truth. We’re in a season of loneliness and there is not a dern thing we can do to immediately change it. Trust me I tried. Go back up a few paragraphs to the place I said I’ve given several invites out and no responses. It’s just a lonely hard fact: we are alone! We are the 1 out of 3 lonely.
It’s the Lonely Port place I call it. It’s the time we must look deeply within ourselves to realize our joy isn’t made complete by the relationships of others. It’s time to find the joy that can only come from our Lord. His promise is to never leave us nor forsake us. There is a special joy He has just for those who know Him. We just have to seek it and find it.
His Joy doesn’t require there to be another human soul in it’s existence. His Joy is made complete in Christ alone. It can fill and satisfy that emptiness of being single. We are made to be in relationship with others He designed us He knows this. That first most important and lifegiving relationship begins in Jesus Christ. If you don’t personally have a relationship with Him it is simple to get. Just ask Him He says. Call upon the name of The Lord and you will be saved. Admit you tried doing life without Him and you were wrong. You need Him to enter your heart and become Your Lord. When you do this your loneliness will change. You will still struggle but you will never struggle alone again. His hope now lives in you and me.
When your hope has been thrashed. And your thoughts have become lies. It’s time to put on the Joy of the Lord and wear it. Time to put on a spirit of praise and gratefulness. Make sure everyday we dress up in the whole armor of God and be filled completely by His Spirit.
We can choose to put away that spirit of loneliness. Change our perspective mindset and trust that when we have a relationship with Jesus Christ then we are never ever alone.
Let us give thanks today for He is good and His love and mercy endures forever. Let us relinquish our pain and sorrow and allow the Lord of our life to turn our mourning into dancing.
He never responds with I am too busy. He will never ignore your request. He will always answer. He is always there.
Today, I visited The Free life Church in Forney. It was a message about living your best life now. Again, a very timely message for me to hear. I love the beauty of the body of Christ known as The Church. The diversity of cultures and people that were there worshipping Jesus Christ was beautiful. No matter where we go the body if Christ is one body made up of many people. We can find God anywhere we seek Him. The message reminded me of our eternity. The Pastor spoke about how we all tend to live life for us focused on our short time we have on this earth… But without a thought of how we will spend more time living out our life in eternity. It’s so true. We tend to think we have a good 80 to 100 years if we’re blessed to live out our lives. Then we die and it’s all over. We do everything we can to experience our short time hear without the thought we will spend a gatrillion gazillion lifetimes living in eternity in the New Jerusalem. None of us will ever die forever. We will die and either we will live out an eternity in heaven or an eternity in hell. We live our life and it’s but a vapor we have to live it here. Those who know Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior will die for a season until they are resurrected again with Christ to live out an eternity with Him in the New Jerusalem. The new place He has been preparing for us. If Christ has gone to prepare a place for us to spend eternity with Him what are we doing to help Him. What are we doing to invest in our eternity? Are we living our best life surrendered and sold out for Christ, serving Him and serving others who we will spend an eternity there? I confess I am not doing my part being 100% sold out for eternity. I am far from living my best life. I honestly serve myself more than I serve others. I spend more time doing what I want to do then doing what Christ wants me to do. It’s a message God is driving home hard to me. A message I need pounded on my heart. Changes are needed from within me. Changes of perspective from the now to the eternity needs to happen. Lord Jesus, I surrender to serve you with all that I am and all that I have. I want to be used by you…I want to do your will not my own. I want to serve others more than myself. I want to help others find their best life too. It has to start with me first. I can only change and grow me. Today. Right now. No more excuses. Time to walk the walk and talk the talk 24/7 for me. Time to live my best life to spend an eternity with Jesus. The King of All Kings. The Lion of Judah. The Great I Am. Are you with me?
I learned this new worship song at church…it ministered to my heart so greatly and so timely reminding me that God always makes a way when it seems impossible for there to be a way. He is the way maker…the miracle worker…that is who He is. So many times when I thought my life was over or I couldn’t see a way out of my circumstances He would always find a way to give me that “parting of the red sea experience” just like he gave the children of Israel. He was there for them and He has always been there for me. Sometimes I have to get to the end of myself and move out of His way so He can show me the way. But He never leaves me alone. He’s always there in the midst of my faith crisis. He always has made a way for me when I could see no way through the pain or difficulty. That’s the beauty of knowing Him and His character. The miracle of who He is…it is the miracle of realizing He is that same God today as He was yesterday…the same God who gave all the miracles to the people in the Bible thousands of years ago. He is still that same miracle worker who spared Daniel from the Lion’s Den…the same God who healed the sick, the lame and the blind…the same God who heals us from the pains of our past…He is The Way Maker the Way to reconcile our lost souls and hearts to Him and Jesus’ forgiveness…the same God yesterday, today and forever. That is who He is hallelujah!… I pray you find some time to remember who He is to you and turn your eyes and heart to worship Him. He is worthy of all our love and praise.
Do you ever ask yourself, What is my purpose? What does God want me to do in my role as His child? Do you question how to use the gifts and talents Jesus has indwelled within you? These are valid questions we find we are often asking of God.
Our lives were completely changed the moment we asked Christ into our hearts. The Bible says the old has passed away and we are made new. We are born again into the image of Christ. Our desires and our old wants have changed. It can be very challenging trying to find what our role, or purpose or our place in service to our Lord should be in our new skin.
Our “role” is completely separate from our purpose in Christ. By this I mean it is our role to serve the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength… that is constant. Jesus saved us to serve and worship Him. That is our forever role as His children.
Our purpose is the means by which He calls us and equips us to walk in those roles. The purpose is the manner we go about serving Him as His children. He is our Lord.
Our role will always be to seek and serve Jesus first. Our purpose, is the calling in which He has gifted us to do that. Some are called the Bible says to be teachers and evangelists or Prophets or Administrators or Caregivers and so on. We all are called and gifted by the Holy Spirit of God for His good works. These are the spiritual gifts He has given us to accomplish His will and purpose in our individual lives for the building up of the body of Christ.
Our “role” to seek and serve Jesus first will never change it remains as our directional compass guiding us while here on this earth. Our purposes in doing His will will be fulfilled in the circumstances, and surroundings He puts within our pathway. Seeing our purpose sometimes can become a bit hazy because of our life adversities or circumstances that we face. It gets hazy as some situations we find ourselves walking in we may have never faced them before. Such as a divorce, or death of a loved one. Sometimes a life change or career move can move us to a new “normal” and we find ourselves questioning what is our purpose now? How do I serve God in the midst of my painful circumstances?
We must be fluid enough to sense the purpose of God within our adversities. This can seem impossible at times. When we’re hurting we may find being sensitive to the Leading of His Spirit is almost impossible to do as our life focus changes. But we can remain hopeful in knowing our “Role in Christ” or our identity in Christ as His children will never change. It always remains ever present always strong within our adversities.
I have served in my role as a christian, as a child of God, while suffering through hardships. My purpose, my calling as a teacher in my spiritual giftedness has flowed from many different veins. I have taught in many genres of service but always in the same purpose of giftedness at work within me. I am called and gifted to teach but I didn’t always stand before a classroom and teach, there have been times when the genre changed and I would sit one on one and share the gospel of God’s love with another person I met along the way. There have been times when the genre became my writing as the avenue of means for my gifts of teaching and exhortation to be used. There have been times while on vacations when I would sense God’s purpose being done in me as I sat on a beach in another teaching genre and shared Christ’s healing with another hurting individual. My role of serving Christ has never changed. My purposes have taken on new methods but my role remains eternal. It is my first and foremost calling to serve Him wherever I am and wherever His path leads me.
My secondary means is my purpose to serve Him by His Spirit and giftedness as I live my life everyday. Minister as you go is accomplishing your purpose in Christ. We don’t have to get trapped up in looking for what God’s will is for our lives if we know that our role is seperate from our purpose. We are all called to love the Lord and serve Him only that is our role.
If we are confident in our role as children of God we find trusting Him with our purpose comes what may. We need not worry what it is we just need to walk in our roles and His purpose will be revealed as we folliw Him.
It’s my responsibility to remain obedient to the disciplines of my spiritual growth, by remaining in The Word and diligent in Prayer everyday. My responsibility to be equipped and prepared and to stay nourished and healthy in my walk with Christ is as vital as my next breath. I must be ready at every corner and every avenue to give an answer to the hope that is within me. I must be ready to serve in my purpose.
It is my role to serve Jesus with my whole being and to share my purpose through the giftedness from God’s love toward others. This is my calling. This is my purpose. This is my reason for living.
No more doubting my role or purpose from this point forward. I will walk boldly by His Grace and Goodness and trusting in His pathway to hope, peace and forgiveness for all.
Wherever He leads me I will go. Wherever I go He will lead me. My purpose will be fulfilled as I take each breath. It happens daily as I seek and serve Him with all of my heart.
Knowing this, believing this and trusting in “my role” as a child of God…it is enough. I need not doubt or question. I can walk by faith knowing He has a plan for my life.. a role and a purposs to do “His Will” …it will happen and it always will be sufficient for the day ahead.