Thursday, October 27, 2016

Grow into God's Maturity.

This week, Michael writes that contentment is a hard lesson to learn.  We're all works in progress...  we're in the process of being wrought by the master's hand.  Our choice is to be yielding and willing to allow God to work within our hearts to will and to do of His good pleasure.  

Are you your own man or woman, or are you His man or woman. O men and women of God: “choose ye this day whom ye shall serve”:  as for me and my house we will serve The Lord.  He called us from the darkness of this world into the marvelous light of his glorious truth so that we could declare the excellency of His power that works in us.

A child's perspective is self centered. The characteristic of childhood is "what's in it for me?"  A child only thinks of himself and of immediate self gratification. There is no maturity in self-centeredness. The period of adolescence is for growing  and developing into maturity. This is a turbulent time when the childhood pull of self-centeredness struggles against the pull of the greater things in life:  growing into an understanding of the perspective of "what would Jesus do?"

Our culture worships “self”.  It glorifies childhood and adolescence. This stunts growth into wisdom and maturity. Whom do you emulate?  Who is your mentor. Whom do you choose to follow and to model your life and behavior along the way? A disciple is a disciplined follower. Many are called but few are chosen. Jesus spoke to great multitudes, but he chose twelve.  

There are two types of leaders: self-serving leaders or God-serving leaders. God-serving leaders serve God by serving others. Jesus said that in that you have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.  Giving is living.  As you serve others, you serve God.

The love of God is paradoxical. The God-rejecting world says to "help yourself" in our self-serving culture. However, by serving God through serving God's people, you allow God to bless you in return. Serving others in love allows God to multiply blessings back to you as a result of your giving to bless others.  

Let him that stole steal no more, but rather let him labor, working with his hand the thing which is good that ye may have to give to him that needeth. What do you need?  All I need is Thee. The giving is of the Word of God ... of spiritual things ...  of the Love of God in the renewed mind in manifestation. They don't need stuff. They need God's salvation through His Son Jesus Christ. For what doth it profit a man if he gains the whole world and looses his soul?

Are you growing in Christ?  What's most important in your life? There will be tribulation in this life. Materialism and the things of this world are fleeting.  Worldly goods, position, honor of man, accolades, and wealth of this world are but for a moment. For everything there is a season. As Paul said, "I have learned to abound and to suffer need, however, God is my sufficiency in all things." In my own ability I can do nothing. Did we in our own strength confide our battle would be loosing. If done by my own hand, my efforts will come to naught.  As Solomon said, all is vanity...  it profiteth me nothing.  What abides?  Jesus said, "lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth where moth and rust doth corrupt, but rather lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven...  for where your treasure is there will your heart be also."

A Christian Worship leader penned these words to the song "The Star of the Show."
Lord I will do my very best to see that all your people are blessed. But when the night is over, and it's time to go, Lord they'll remember who's the star of the show.
It's you Lord who does the fulfilling, It's you Lord who gets the top billing,
It's you Lord who performs like nobody can

In The words of the great hymn by Martin Luther "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God:"
Did we in our own strength confide our battle would be loosing, were not the right man on our side, the man of God's own choosing. Doth ask who that may be? Christ Jesus it is he, and he must win the battle. It's not about me. It's about Him. I have been crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, yet not I but Christ liveth in me. We're running a marathon ... the race is not yet over. I press toward the mark of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

We're God's work in progress. Therefore yield to the touch of the Master's hand.  Thou art the potter I am the clay. For it is God that worketh in you to will and to do of his good pleasure. Growing up into Him: I must decrease that he might increase.

May God richly bless you,
Your brother in Christ,

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