Rejoice When A Christian Dies!!

Hello, there!

A truer statement was never more true….the MOST BLESSED moment in a Christian’s life is her or his death. Paul eagerly looked forward to it as written in Philippians 1:21 and 2 Corinthians 5:8. (Please also reference the Category “Living Is Christ….Dying Gain”) Ecclesiastes 7:8 echoes it well: “Better is the end of a thing than its beginning.”

Of course, we should certainly weep and grieve for the temporary loss of their physical presence, but in our spirit, we should REJOICE that they have finally come to the end of their earthly journey in this  dark, sin filled, sickness filled, suffering filled and sorrow filled world ruled by Satan. (John 12:31, 2 Corinthians 4:4)

Thankfully, in Their mercy and love, God and Christ Jesus give both unbelievers and Christians passing moments of human happiness and joy in one form or another, to each person as they deserve.

However, I would venture to speculate confidently that the fleeting human happiness and joy we now experience as mortals compared to that which we will experience in our GLORIFIED, newly transformed CELESTIAL BODIES (please reference the Category “Our Glorious New Bodies”) would be like comparing a lighted candle on earth to a million suns….maybe MORE!

And, always keep in mind….NOTHING HAPPENS WITHOUT GOD’S PERMISSION (please reference the Category by this same title). This means it was the right moment  for this particular Christian to die at this particular time….and it was the BEST thing to happen for EVERYONE involved, regardless of how human eyes may see it. (You might want to reference the Category “God Can Give Nothing But Blessing And Goodness”)

You might also want to read the Categories “Death Of Infants And Young Children” as well “Death”.

Until later, be blessed in Him.

Fred

Come Unto Me And I Will Give You Rest

Greetings!

This wonderful truth in Matthew 11:28 does NOT describe some cheap and easy benefit bestowed on a Christian from the git-go.

Believing, in itself, enables us to become God’s chosen saints and gain access to Him and Christ Jesus but it does NOT automatically afford the very real, Holy ” rest”spoken of in this verse….in fact, even demons can believe (James 2:19).

Having nice thoughts about God and Jesus, carrying out Christian functions such as good works, church attendance, Bible study, ritualistic prayer, etc., etc. likewise will NOT serve as a means to gain this blessed “rest” that defies human understanding….although, they can certainly serve to help us if done in the proper way.

The key to understanding how this supernatural “rest” can be ours is clearly revealed in the phrase “come unto Me” in verse 28. We can do ALL the endeavors mentioned above and still NOT “come unto” our Lord.  In other words, the above activities can all be done in an entirely religious manner without us ever reaching Jesus personally, and it is only here, that we actually experience our promised “rest”.

Thankfully, the solution to our problem is shown in James 4:8: “come close to God, and He will come close to you“. The way we “come close”  (or “come unto“)  our Father and Jesus is to  continuously (minute by minute and hour by hour) go to Them in ALL our daily activities, much in the manner described in the Category/Post “Practicing The Presence Of God”. I hope you will take the time to read this Category  about Brother Lawrence as well as the Categories/Posts on “Letters From A Modern Mystic” and “Why Not Be A Mystic”.

Until later, in Him,

Fred

 

Usefulness

Hey, there!

I was reading a daily devotional this morning from Oswald Chambers’ “My Utmost For His Highest” at http://utmost.org/usefulness-or-relationship/ and he made some very good and truthful points concerning whether our relationship with our Father and Christ Jesus is more important than our apparent successes and achievements regarding our Christian works and activities.

The following excerpts are edited and emphasized by me.

He noted that if the latter was more important “then Jesus Christ was the greatest failure who ever lived.” It is true….His ministry was an utter disaster and in ruin as “all” had left Him and ALL that everyone had hope for in Him turned out to be a seeming lie and illusion. In the eyes of the world, He had accomplished absolutely nothing good (except His apparent healings); but rather, only grief and sorrow for those who had believed in Him.

Mr. Chambers goes on to write:

“For the saint, direction and guidance come from God Himself, NOT some measure of that saint’s usefulness. It is the work that God does through us that counts, NOT what we do for HimALL that our Lord gives His attention to in a person’s life is that person’s relationship with God.”

I often remember the example of Hannah  given to us in Luke 2:36-38. She offered God her total attention and devotion night and day and never left the temple. She did NOT actively ‘save souls’ or have ANY apparent good works or achievements to be applauded before human eyes….none!

And yet, she received God’s blessed approval because of her personal relationship with Him….and nothing more.

We should NEVER feel discouraged by any apparent lack of good  human works or successes in the Christan realm of our lives because the one main concern  of God and of our Savior is for us to continually  have that PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP with Them.

Of course, Christian ‘good works’ are to be applauded, and they will also be rewarded; HOWEVER, as indicated above, they are NOT the only true measure of a saint’s life, nor the most important.

Take care, in Him.

Fred

Identified Or Simply Interested?

Hey, there!

I have another entry for you from Oswald Chambers’ MY UTMOST FOR HIS HIGHEST, of which this and all his entries can be accessed FREE as explained in the Category by the same title:

” ‘I have been crucified with Christ….’ (Galatians 2:20)

The inescapable spiritual need each of us has is the need to sign the death certificate of our sin nature. I must take my emotional opinions and intellectual beliefs and be willing to turn them into a moral verdict against the nature of sin; that is, against any claim I have to my right to myself. Paul said, “I have been crucified with Christ….” He did not say, “I have made a determination to imitate Jesus Christ,” or, “I will really make an effort to follow Him” —but— “I have been identified with Him in His death.” Once I reach this moral decision and act on it, all that Christ accomplished for me on the Cross is accomplished in me. My unrestrained commitment of myself to God gives the Holy Spirit the opportunity to grant to me the holiness of Jesus Christ.

“…it is no longer I who live….” My individuality remains, but my primary motivation for living and the nature that rules me are radically changed. I have the same human body, but the old satanic right to myself has been destroyed.

“…and the life which I now live in the flesh,” not the life which I long to live or even pray that I live, but the life I now live in my mortal flesh— the life which others can see, “I live by faith in the Son of God….” This faith was not Paul’s own faith in Jesus Christ, but the faith the Son God had given to him (see Ephesians 2:8). It is no longer a faith in faith, but a faith that transcends all imaginable limits— a faith that comes only from the Son of God.”

Take care, in Him.

Fred

 

 

Total Surrender Defines True Love

Greetings!

I have another entry for you from Oswald Chambers’ “My Utmost For His Highest”; please reference the Post (Category) by the same title to get all of his entries FREE. Here goes:

“If what we call love doesn’t take us beyond ourselves, it is not really love. If we have the idea that love is characterized as cautious, wise, sensible, shrewd, and never taken to extremes, we have missed the true meaning. This may describe affection and it may bring us a warm feeling, but it is not a true and accurate description of love.

Have you ever been driven to do something for God not because you felt that it was useful or your duty to do so, or that there was anything in it for you, but simply because you love Him? Have you ever realized that you can give things to God that are of value to Him? Or are you just sitting around daydreaming about the greatness of His redemption, while neglecting all the things you could be doing for Him? I’m not referring to works which could be regarded as divine and miraculous, but ordinary, simple human things— things which would be evidence to God that you are totally surrendered to Him. Have you ever created what Mary of Bethany created in the heart of the Lord Jesus? “She has done a good work for Me.”

There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him even small gifts of surrender, just to show how genuine our love is for Him. To be surrendered to God is of more value than our personal holiness. Concern over our personal holiness causes us to focus our eyes on ourselves, and we become overly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, out of fear of offending God. “…but perfect love casts out fear…” once we are surrendered to God (1 John 4:18). We should quit asking ourselves, “Am I of any use?” and accept the truth that we really are not of much use to Him. The issue is never of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. Once we are totally surrendered to God, He will work through us all the time.”

End of entry.

There is another section on the same page that has this excellent truth:

“Jesus Christ is always unyielding to my claim to my right to myself. The one essential element in all our Lord’s teaching about discipleship is abandon, no calculation, no trace of self-interest. Disciples Indeed, 395 L

Until later,

Fred

Why It Is So Difficult To Be A True Christian

Greetings!

This Post follows nicely the last Post (“When God Becomes Real To Us”) concerning why it is so NECESSARY that  we CONTINUALLY have ABSOLUTE CONCENTRATION and DEPENDENCE on our Father and Christ Jesus, moment by moment. Please also read the UPDATE of 01/24/2015 that was added to the last Post today.

Here is a list of reasons why it is so VERY difficult to not only remain a true Christian but also to actually progressively grow into the Image of Christ Himself (Colossians 3:10).

1. The very nature of our corruptible and decaying earthly bodies is CONSTANTLY warring against the ‘fruit’ and desires of the Holy Spirit (Romans 7:22-23). Please also reference the Post “Law Of Sin In Our Members”.

2. The very center and essence of our being as humans is our  “heart” which Jeremiah 17:9 tells us “is DECEITFUL above ALL things, and DESPERATELY WICKED; who can know it?“.

In other words, we are pretty much PROGRAMED to be sinful!! Let’s continue.

3. If #1 and #2 were not bad enough, throw in how Satan and his band of sinister sidekicks are CONSTANTLY ASSAILING us from within! He and they are ALWAYS lurking to trap us into sinning at every and any available opportunity (1 Peter 5:8).

4. Add to all of this what Jesus teaches with the parable in Matthew 13:22 about how the cares, worries and desire for earthly goods and riches of this life can cause us to fall away completely. Concerning the truth in this parable Oswald Chambers writes (01/27/2015 entry….emphasis mine):

“It is one STEADY INVASION, and these things will come in like a flood, UNLESS we allow the Spirit of God to raise up the banner against it.”

WOW….talking about having the deck stacked against us, it would seem almost IMPOSSIBLE for any Christian to remain as such, much less grow into becoming more like our Lord Himself.

Thankfully and blessedly, because of God’s love, mercy and grace for us, we have the ability by the SAME Holy Spirit that was in Jesus when He walked the earth and overcame #1,#2,#3 and #4 (John 16:33)!

However, this victory is given only to those who CONTINUALLY (even though we may fall short and fail occasionally) “walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:16-25; Romans 8:1,4).

Not only are we able to have VICTORY but also have the ability to ENJOY the “fruit of the Spirit” (Galatians 5:22)  that is of a HOLY nature and far superior to its human counterpart! Please reference the Post “Fruit Of The Spirit” for more information on this.

This is why what is brought out in the Post “When God Becomes Real To Us” is so important….again, please read the UPDATE to this Post as noted the first paragraph above.

All the best in Him.

Fred

Thank God Continually For Being The Way He Is

Hey, there!

First of all, it defies human logic and the laws of science that there even is God. They scream out that something can never come from nothing and every thing has to have a beginning; so, how could God have no beginning?  Was there never a nothing to begin with? Ha!….I’m rightly confused!!

Anyway, after we come into our glory, I sure hope we will be able to ‘understand’ how our Father first got there!

We so take for granted that God is as PERFECT as He IS as well as for what He PERFECTLY is NOT.

He NEVER:

lies, leaves us alone NOR fails us, is unfair, is moody, is prejudice, is weak, is tired or sleepy, subjects us to anything that is not for our good, is mean spirited, makes a mistake, is caught by surprise at anything, is defeated, sins and is NEVER everything else we can think of that is negative, evil and smacks of failure.

He ALWAYS:

Is PERFECT and GLORIOUS in EVERY way….His POWER absolutely knows NO LIMIT! Is for and stands for LOVE, JUSTICE, MERCY, FORGIVENESS AND KINDNESS.

I have a calendar in my kitchen with different pictures for each month showing awesome views of the universe. They are truly  a wonderful reminder of His awesome power, the likes of which I am sure is just a SMALL SAMPLE of what we will discover and experience when we come into the Kingdom. You can reference the Post “God’s Creative Handiwork” for some breathtaking  displays.

Our Father also truly LOVES BEAUTY….besides those sample we see around us in nature, it is further illustrated by the description of the New Jerusalem in Revelation 21:18-21.,,,JUST BEAUTIFUL!

Likewise, our Lord, Savior, Brother, Friend, and King ,Christ Jesus, is as PERFECTLY PERFECT as is His and our Father.

We should be so THANKFUL that the RULING POWER and CONTROL in all creation is not with someone like Satan; but rather, is with our Father and Jesus….and we should THANK Them TIME AND TIME AGAIN throughout the day and night with a short, spontaneous acknowledgment  of “THANK You for being there as You are”.

All the best, in Him.

Fred