Thursday, January 27, 2011

lose your life for me.

the purpose of our crosses is to keep us from going astray from Jesus, their purpose is to drive us back to His cross. to keep our redeemed souls close with Him forever...

Luke 9:23-24
Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it.
-Jesus says we must deny ourselves (our sinful nature that always goes against God's will) 
-He calls us to fight our sinful self.
-then He says we must take up our cross, we each have different struggles and unique challenges, we each have our own crosses. which we are called to carry daily. not once a year or every now and then, but daily we are to carry our own crosses, our personal sins.
-yes, He promises daily challenges and problems to those who follow Him. our own life is compared to the cross, full of pain and suffering. but why? 
-Jesus sends us the cross- for the purpose that we deny our sinful nature.
that instead of living to please ourselves, and looking to only nourish our own wants and needs-which would be saving our lives - and losing our souls forever..for eternity. 
-Jesus sends us the cross. He sends each of us our own troubles and problems. because we are his children and He loves us.
-so, why does He give us pain in our troubles? -because He loves us. because it drives us back to Him for the strength to get through those struggles. the ONLY strength that will overcome everything.
-if we dont take up our crosses daily and follow Him our struggles and sin will build up like mold and grow worse and worse, preventing us to go to Him with all our hearts, completely and totally vulnerable with all our heart, and be close to our Savior. 
-for each of those times we are most concerned with pleasing our own sinful self, it drives us to His cross, to forgiveness in His blood. it drives us to His Word that overflows with the love that is shown in His death on the cross. it drives us back to His promise of eternity, of a forever love. it drives us back to the blood He shed so we have continual strength and forgiveness. it drives us back to Jesus. 
-our crosses drive us straight back to His cross
-cant you see that He places problems and pain in our lives to bring us closer to Him.
-we find this in His Word, and that Word helps us to deny our sinful self and to find nurture and love in our faith.
-"whoever loses his life FOR ME will save it"
this means denying ourselves everything that influences us, each in our own personal struggle with our own sins, it means denying what leads YOU away from God & Christ's blessings through His pure grace that washes us clean and pours over us through the gospel. 
-we must deny our sinful self, and take up our own cross daily. 
that means more to me now than it used to, after really reading it i grasp the true meaning of it all.
-that i must fight my own sins, each and everyday, and take up my own cross to drive myself back to the strength of Jesus on His cross. 
-the one who went to the cross for you in love sends you crosses, struggles, out of love to keep you close with Him for eternity! so you might lose your own life and stop pleasing yourself to instead live to only please Him...

lose your life for me and save it.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

precious promises.

we have absolutely nothing to do with our gift of faith, except accepting it. the preciousness of His promises isnt affected by our unworthiness. that is what makes it precious- is that its from God, and He doesnt change, how precious are His promises to each and every one of us!

2 Peter 1:3-11

"His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
for this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. for if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. but whoever does not have them is nearsighted and blind, forgetting that they have been cleansed from their past sins.
therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. for if you do these things, you will never stumble, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."

this gives a clear picture of His precious promises and how we can make every effort to receive everything His promises have for us. to soak it all up in our lives...

-His promises offer the love and glory of Christ as our base to grow strong in our role in the divine nature. 
-He is within us, this he promised, to allow us to grow more and more Christlike. 
we have been made new in Christ and have escaped the corruption and lust of the world in our new birth. now it is left for us to make this new birth evident to everyone by our new and changed self and actions. 
-our participation in the divine nature is just the start of Christian living, not the final goal. so once we have been made new in Christ and change our behavior we are called to continue in this relationship. to dive deep into every little crease of Him and completely change our mind and heart to be more like Him every day.
-it takes full participation, and it shows as we let our thinking and living in our lives be renewed.  
-we are called to make EVERY effort to CONFIRM our calling and election! that means letting absolutely everything in our lives revolve around Christ's love and in that mindset we will gain qualities that will make us increasingly effective and productive in our walk with Jesus.
"add to your faith: -goodness, and to goodness,
                           -knowledge, and to knowledge,
                           -self control, and to self control, 
                           -perseverance, and to perseverance,  
                           -godliness, and to godliness,
                           -mutual affection, and to mutual affection,
for if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." 

-without them we are blind, and forget the past sins we have been cleansed from.
do everything you can in your each and every day and in your life to confirm your calling instead of just stating it. CONFIRM IT & change your life for eternity! 
that is His promise, and our life, with Him-in Him, defines these promises for each of us!

confirm your calling.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

be still.

i find almost as much joy and peace from reading my old journal entries as i do from writing new ones everyday.
today i am reading old pages from my journal, and it reminds me of where God has taken me this past year and where i have been with Him. it takes me back to those emotions and reveals to me the growth i have had, and most importantly shows me how God works in our lives, His intricate meanings weaved inside His course for us...we dont see it at the time but everything plays a part in this course. 
-i am thankful for my journaling over the past year, i can truly say it has strengthened my relationship with Christ so much.
-i look forward to my time away from this world with God everyday, time with my creator, my best friend, my constant, my love. my quiet time with Him is important in my day and in my life.

He calls us to be still and listen in His presence, so He can strengthen us. 
-our lives are busy, and i hear people say it all the time-that we dont have as much time, that we have too much to deal with everyday in this busy world...
-but the truth is- you always have time for the God who has given you THIS time, that has given you THIS LIFE
-so how can we ever say we dont have time or are too busy to spend time alone growing with the one who gave you each minute your living? 
the busier you are the more you need time alone with Him.

John 15:5- I am the vine, you are the branches. if you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit, apart from me you can do nothing.
i remain in Him by listening, being still and quiet, reading His word, and writing to Him and about Him. spending time with Him allows me to remain in Him- living in Him, because without Him i can do nothing.i have also found much strength in each day from this time with Him-i feel stronger because i am sufficient in His strength through our time together. 

-if we do not take time from everything else to be with Him we will be trying to rely on our own strength  
-although i know that this strength wont last for long and will become exhausted.
-after our own strength isnt able to hold us up anymore we will either cry to God for help or turn away from Him in pain. 
we NEED to walk close with Him, and depend only on His strength through everything and everyday. 

take time away from this world to be with your God and you will find blessings of peace
...along with strengthening yourself and your relationship with Him. 

"walk in the light with Me, and you will reflect Me to the watching world."
-alone with you