On Being a Blessing to Believers

Psalms 69:6   (NLT)   Don’t let those who trust in you be ashamed because of me, O Sovereign Lord of Heaven’s Armies. Don’t let me cause them to be humiliated, O God of Israel.

The way we live as believers affects our spiritual family. We cause others to esteem them highly or to look down on them.  Our attitudes, conduct, character, words, principles, and actions go farther and wider, and affect more people than we realize. The last thing we want to do is to give our Lord’s name and our fellow believers a bad rap.

Psalm 69.6 - Be a Blessing to BelieversWhen God calls us to be holy, it is not a figure of speech; He is serious about it; He means business. It is not a suggestion; it is not a joke. Him being holy and perfect is literally true. That’s His basis in calling us to be holy as well. “But you are to be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:48 NLT); “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must be holy because I am holy’” (1 Peter 1:16)—that’s what God’s Word says. I would say His call for us to be holy is literally true as well. “…work at living a holy life, for those who are not holy will not see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14). That’s a huge implication on us personally, but we realize: it far transcends us.

God doesn’t want us to have even a tinge of wickedness in our hearts. He knows it spreads and it spreads rapidly. It gets bigger; it becomes deadlier; and it destroys more people. We must seriously consider this. We don’t take this lightly. We love God so much; we don’t want to cause others to dishonor Him. We love each other so much; we don’t want to cause others to slander them. We don’t want to cause them any humiliation or harm. We bring light, not darkness; we shine brightly so that God will be glorified. We don’t want to pull our brothers and sisters down to embarrassment; we want to help them soar higher.

We don’t deny our imperfection; we still sin—that’s an obvious fact. But we also don’t tweak God’s Word to accommodate that. This is not a case of either-or; it’s both. Let’s settle that. Now, let’s live in a way that’s a blessing to the Lord and His family.

Advertisements

Bountifully Blessed

Acts 26:18   (NLT)   18 to open their eyes, so they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God. Then they will receive forgiveness for their sins and be given a place among God’s people, who are set apart by faith in me.’

A lot of great things happens to us when we place our full dependence on Jesus for our salvation and surrender our lives to Him. For one, our blind eyes are opened. God’s love, our need, our spiritual poverty, God’s answer to our spiritual need, our appropriate Acts 26.18 - Bountifully Blessedresponse—all these are elucidated in our minds and hearts by God’s precious Holy Spirit. That’s why we humbly, gratefully, and readily call on Him and receive Him into our lives.

There’s so much more: we no longer live in darkness, we now live in the light—we are children of light, lights of the world. Whew—awesome descriptions of our identity. Satan, as powerful as he may be, no longer has a hold on us because we’re now under God’s Almighty protection. Satan has got nothing on God. Oh, what joy to know He who gives us life, and life way more abundantly, is infinitely more powerful than the one who tries to steal, kill, and destroy.

We’re also forgiven of all our sins. That’s big. Our sins separated us from God—spiritually dead, that is. That’s serious. Without His forgiveness, it leads to eternal death. That doesn’t sound good; that’s horrible. To spend eternity apart from God, void of love, joy, peace, freedom, and bliss is more than horrible; it’s indescribably agonizing. But we’re forgiven. We’re now, in a saving sense, God’s children—a part of His spiritual family—His people. We’re different; we’re separated from the rest; we’re unique—wonderfully unique.

Dayspring from Heaven

Luke 1:78   (KJV)   78 Through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on high hath visited us,

Because God, our heavenly Father loves us infinitely much and is immensely merciful to us, He brightens our days and lights our paths. Our precious Lord Jesus, the Dayspring from on high, the Morning Light came “to give light to them that sit in darkness and in luke-1-78-79-dayspring-from-heaventhe shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace (Luke 1:79). This is one of the clear and vital meanings of Christmas or His incarnation.

We humbly admit the obvious: we are imperfect. We’re surrounded by ever-expanding and deepening darkness. There are unanswered questions and unexplored roads ahead. These seemingly daunting realities render many people fearfully paralyzed. Many are stuck or are sinking deeper in despair and desperate circumstances. But Christmas is a message of hope and God’s powerful yet lovingly gentle intervention.

Our Father, our Lord God Who has made heavens and earth by His great power extends His mighty and inviting arms to us. There, we find grace and mercy that’s able to cover the multitudes of our sins. There, darkness flees; there, death is powerless; there, troubles are calmed. We don’t fear treading on our future. We may not know what waits, but we take comfort in the truth that the Rising Sun—our Lord Jesus—lights our way and indeed brightens our day.

The Light of the World

John 8:12   (KJV)   12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

God wants us to see clearly, knowing where we are, with a clear sight of our destiny—the wonderful future He has prepared for us. He doesn’t want us lost, groping in darkness. He john-8-12-the-light-of-the-worldmakes sure our paths are lit well; He Himself is the light that illuminates our world and brightens our lives. (Thank You Lord). He leads the way where we should go. We—His followers are sure of our steps; we avoid stumbling and falling.

It’s difficult to move in darkness, much more to walk in it or live in it. But darkness is real; darkness abounds, and there are many of us who are still there. There is darkness in the mind: people are plagued with debilitating worries, erroneous beliefs, and destructive opinions. We have darkness in our hearts: many are sad, angry, and ashamed. There is darkness in our world: we see chaos, pride, hatred, and unbridled lust.

Praise God, we’re free from darkness. The Light of the World shines so brightly, showing us the way to go, and we walk forward with confidence. That’s the reason why we found our way to eternal life in the first place. He fills us, surrounds us, and leads us. He’s so much a part of our lives, so close to us that we as His followers share in His “light” nature. We are also lights of the world. He’s the great big universal infinite Light and Light Source; we’re the localized light—much smaller, but lights nonetheless—lights shining brightly as well.

Because we as believers live in His light, we see Him. Because of His light, we see ourselves clearly: we see if we’re clean, or if we have smudges, spots and stains. We’re honest about our real condition, and we address the problems. Because of His light, we’re living out our purposes well, and we’re journeying forward towards our destiny—joyfully.

 

The Word, Life, and Light

John 1.4 - The Word, Life, and Light - 2John‬ ‭1:4‬   (KJV‬‬)   In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

Jesus is the Word; He is the Light of the world; He is life. As the Word, He gives life; as Life, He brings light. Because of the Word, creation exists; because of life, death is overcome, because of light, darkness flees.

God doesn’t run out of resources. He spoke and the worlds came into being. He doesn’t need anything to create something; His Word is more than enough to create reality. Life and death are in the power of the tongue. God speaks life. He is our life-source; He’s also our life-support. God illuminates our world; in Him, everything is exposed; everything is made clear.

We have no fear of lack; God has promised more than enough provisions for those who seek Him, His Kingdom, and His righteousness first. His Word is our bond; nothing’s surer. We have no fear of death; we who believe, although we die, we will live, and those of us who live and believe will never die. Death really has lost its sting. We no longer live in darkness; we’re free from sin, guilt, and shame. We know where we’re headed. He is the Light that marks our destiny, the Lamp of our feet, the Light of our path. We’re not lost.