July 26, 2019

Do Not Let Yesterday Take Up Too Much Of Today
~ Will Rogers ~

One of the great dangers that can debilitate our lives is living too much in the past. That does not mean we do not learn from the past. The past and our decisions can provide wisdom for the future; learning what to do and not do next time! But if we are caught up in the paralysis of analysis it is hard to enjoy the present and anticipate the future.

For some of us there are issues of shame or guilt in the past and we have a hard time breaking free and accepting the forgiveness of Jesus. The apostle Paul was all too aware of his past, both the good and bad. He had the right family and religious pedigree. (Philippians 3:4-5)  He had received a holy mission from the highest religious authority of the day, and he carried it out with complete zeal capturing and killing Christians. (Philippians 3:6; Acts 7:58, 9:1). But then he found Jesus - or Jesus found him, and then everything changed. (Acts 9:3)

However, I imagine there were times when upon reflection Paul felt a sense of shame and guilt as to his prior life. But then Paul would remind himself and us;

"Forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead I press on to the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore as many as are mature have this attitude and if in anything you have a different attitude God will reveal that also to you." (Phil. 3:14-15)
If you have to think about the past, then remember:
  •    The Lamb of God takes away the sin of the world.
  •    The death of Christ gives me eternal life.
  •    The blood of Jesus has set me free.
  •    I am forgiven.
Hallelujah. (Praise Yah: Hebrew Imperative & short form for Praise Yahweh)
I hope to live today in light of tomorrow with an attitude of gratitude.
Do not let yesterday take up too much of today.

Serving Him with you
Until He comes for us,

July 19, 2019

                                                    Swaddled in Darkness

This evocative phrase coined by T.S. Elliot in the 20th century describes our culture of the 21st century. This should not surprise us given that over the past 60 years we have watched what C.S. Lewis described in The Abolition of Man; man as a moral being is being terminated.
It should not surprise us that modern man, let alone postmodern man, is morally bankrupt. It is like removing a vital organ and expecting the person to live. When we remove the Biblical doctrine of God and the Biblical doctrine of man, we often find man being defined as simply material. It is as B.F. Skinner the famed behaviorist declared a generation ago; there is no difference between a rat and a radish, a man and a dog.

Watson and Crick, the alleged discoverers of the double helix of DNA, advanced the argument that no newborn infant has the right to be called human or a person until it has passed certain endowment tests.
As Jose Ortega Ye Gasset declared in a similar situation: "What has happened to us is that we do not know what has happened to us, and that is what has happened to us, not to know what has happened to us."
However, as Christians we do know what has happened to us and our society and we have been given instructions - orders if you will - of what we are to do. We are to walk in the light. We are to expose the darkness. (Eph. 5) I take it there is a cause effect relationship. As we walk in the light we will expose the dark. There is no promise that the darkness will be pleased. In fact, the world and the devil will be dis-pleased, and we will find ourselves in spiritual warfare. (Eph. 6)
How will you be light today? Scripture gives us the source of such brilliance.
  • Be being filled with the Spirit. - Eph. 5
  • Let the word of Christ dwell richly in you. - Col. 3; Eph. 3
  • Walk in the Spirit - Gal. 5
  • Be led by the Spirit - Gal. 5
  • Being filled with the fulness of God - Eph. 3
We have all we need for life and godliness...even in a godless world that is swaddled in darkness. We the Church are here to illuminate with the light to expose the darkness.
As Jesus said, "You are the light of the world." (Matt. 5:14)
"Let your light shine bright before men that they might see you good works and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matt. 5:16)

Serving Him with you
Until He comes for us,
July 12, 2019

Who Controls You?
Most people do not like to think they are controlled by anyone or anything. We reject being controlled by the media. We react against some governmental impositions and rebel against a few laws. And then there are just some people that we do not respond well to.
In some way this is all just part of our nature. And that is the problem. It is our nature. However, as Christians we actually have a new nature apart from our original human nature. We have actually inherited and been in-dwelt by the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit (the third person of the triune Godhead) who has baptized us (associated us) into the Church of Jesus Christ and sealed us until the day of redemption.
All of this is positionally true for every Christian. But practically speaking, the Holy Spirit also desires to fill us and lead us to live our lives so that we walk according to the Spirit and manifest the fruit of the Spirit.  
When Christians are filled with, walk with, and are controlled by the Holy Spirit, we are experiencing a prequel glimpse of predestined greatness that is ours for all time. Walking with the Spirit is to be under the control of the Spirit and to keep in step with the Spirit.

As Lewis Sperry Chafer said about being filled with the Holy Spirit, "It is not a matter of acquiring more of the Spirit, but rather of the Spirit of God acquiring more of the individual."   

Who controls you today?

Serving Him with you
Until He comes for us,
July 5, 2019

People Overestimate the Absurd and Underestimate the Mundane

It is hard not to be impacted and influenced by the verbal and visual onslaught we face each day from the media in all its expressions. Indeed, it is tempting to believe some of what we hear and see even though it is so absurd. In fact, we often overestimate the power of the absurd. I'm not saying we are not facing some dangerous people with dangerous ideas. We are!  But is it possible that we have overestimated their impact and importance, which has given them more actual power than they actually have?
It seems that in our estimation and evaluation of the situation we have underestimated the mundane. I am thinking of the millions of Christians, and millions of others who follow a Judeo-Christian values system who might appear to be mundane but are not actually marginalized. Maybe those polls are wrong?  Maybe there is hope.

I have never been in danger of being called Pollyanna, or Mr. Optimistic. For me the glass is not only half empty, there is a hole in it!  However, I am part of the Church Victorious, who serves the risen Lord who is Christ the Victor. The early church turned the world upside down. Maybe we the church today can turn it right-side up.
Happy Belated Birthday America!
Serving Him with you
Until He comes for us,