12 July 2012

Living for Him

When ever we enter a church to hear a message the one thing we've got to do is be ready to receive what is being taught.  We may not like the delivery, we may not like the passage, we may even break it down differently, however, the key to victory in Jesus is allowing Him to move in our lives.  We are our biggest obstacle to freedom.  We want things our way, we want to do things our way, we want to remain the same way ... yes He said come as you are but we ain't supposed to stay that way if we truly are in love with Christ and want to follow after God. 
1 Cor 1:10
10 I appeal to you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be united in the same mind and the same judgment. Can we agree?
I thank God for His provision and leading each day. I’m discovering things about Him that I’ve partially realized or never realized and I’m excited. I can’t help but get excited as God has provided a way for me to attend Moody Bible Institute and given me a family, which supports me through that in so many ways. When I would rather do things with them but know that I’ve got to dedicate time to books, papers and studying … they have been a blessing during this time just as they were while I was active duty … there is one class I’ve enjoyed a bit more than the others, which opens the door to the early preachers like John Calvin, Martin Luther, John Wesley, Leonard Ravenhill … in that class I did a presentation on David Wilkerson. A mighty man of God that you hear pastor make reference to on occasion out of admiration; there is a portion of his story that has been ringing in my ears … it was a night when he was telling the now president of Global Teen Challenge, Jerry Nance that all the crusade buildings, the warehouse, all the books, all the training materials—all of this is the wood, hay, and stubble. It will all burn up one day and is meaningless to God.” Then he said, “Jerry, what really matters is that we know Him. If we are not comfortable in the presence of the Lord down here, we will not be comfortable in the presence of the Lord up there.” Do we know Him?
If we know God, really know God, you can’t help but be drawn to Him. However it doesn’t make living the pure Christian life easy by any means. If you’re anything like me, living that way is sometimes a great struggle, however I know that I can overcome through the power of Holy Spirit because according to 1 John 4:4 greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world.
In our men’s group, we had been going through the study of Romans 12 and I’ve been convicted and challenged all at the same time. To be convicted to me means to reveal that there has got to be more to this life than just getting by and far too often we as believers settle, we live below the means or the standard that God has for our lives. The enemy serves fish sticks and we take it like that’s all we got when God has Prime Rib waiting for us.
So with that let’s get into what I think has now become my new favorite couple of verses; (Romans 12:1-2 ESV) I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. To me that verse is saying – ‘In light of all that God has done for you, the only reasonable thing to do is to live for Him.’
John Bertram Phillips one of Britain's most famous Bible communicators has a pretty interesting translation of Romans 12:1-2:
With eyes wide open to the mercies of God, I beg you, my brothers, as an act of intelligent worship, to give Him your bodies, as a living sacrifice, consecrated to Him and acceptable by Him. Don't let the world around you squeeze you into its own mold, but let God re-mold your minds from within, so that you may prove in practice that the Plan of God for you is good, meets all His demands and moves towards the goal of true maturity.
Many of us know this, but how many of us are actively doing it? Many of us are prone to procrastinate. Procrastination is putting off until tomorrow what we should be doing today. Unfortunately the #1 thing many people put off is their walk with the Lord. ‘I’ll get around to it – next week, next year, sometime later …’ Yet while we’re putting off what needs to be done, we are living a dry, defeated Christian life. Not only that, Satan is doing all he can to keep us conformed to the world.
‘In light of all that God has done for you, the only reasonable thing to do is to live for Him.’
Are you?