Tag Archives: Obedience

The Mind of Christ – Are You Experiencing the Love of ‘The One’?

Today, it is not uncommon to hear people say ‘I am looking for the one’. While the use of ‘the one’ for me invokes thoughts of the Matrix, its use is more commonly reserved for that individual we just know is perfect for us. A real superhuman who brings us love, joy, and peace. A passionate, compassionate, forgiving, courageous, hard-working, faithful, kind, gentle, patient, and self-controlled soul who loves us for who we are. If you are looking for such a person, then today is your lucky day for I have their contact information. They can be reached at 1800-ELI-DIAL, 1800-THE-WORD, or Jesus@walkintheSpirit.com.

While this contact information is obviously fictitious, it does point to the truth that God has already made a way for us to reach or contact Him through the sacrifice of His Son.  There is no other way! It is only when we accept Jesus that we are given the contact information to get to ‘The One’.

“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” – John 14:6

When we call upon ‘The One’, He (God) stirs up the Holy Spirit within us to move on our behalf – to guide us, empower us, and to rain down all the goodies of the Kingdom of Heaven that He (Holy Spirit) has brought with Him. However, many of us do not fully experience these goodies (love, joy, peace etc) because we seldom dial Eli (God) on the prayer line, fail to spend time in His Word, and choose not to walk in the Spirit.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: We have to spend time with ‘The One’ if we are to ever experience His love.

Now, our example of always being in contact or having perfect fellowship with ‘The One’ is Jesus. We know He had continuous unbroken fellowship with the Father because He did not sin. In fact, that fellowship was so tight and so close that Jesus said ‘I am in the Father and the Father is in Me’. And because of that fellowship, He was able to imitate God in speaking what the Father spoke and doing the great works that the Father did (see John 14:10).

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: When we contact and fellowship with God, He enables us to bring forth the goodies and works of heaven into the earthly realm through the empowerment of His Holy Spirit.

The question then is this: How did Jesus do it as a man? How did He stay in constant contact with the Father? If we can answer this question, then we have a real shot at experiencing love (God) the way we should (since we have been granted access), and do the greater works He said we will do (see John 14:12). If we can have the same mind as Christ, then we can follow in His footsteps.

Since God desires for us to be in constant fellowship with Him, He gave us the answer of what the mind of Christ looks like through Paul the Apostle. He says:

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bond-servant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” – Philippians 2:5 – 8

So there it is. The answer is humility and obedience.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment:  Every time we set our minds on humility and obedience, we achieve the mind of Christ.

Since humility and obedience are the keys, it is important to know the practical steps to become humble and obedient – although we know they both flow out of love. In the case of humility, we ought to get to the point of humbling ourselves rather than have life humble us through vicissitudes. Similarly, the prerequisite to obeying God is asking what He wants us to do (via prayer) and verifying His direction for us (seeking His face). Thus, the mind of Christ can be expanded to include prayer and seeking the face of God.

When we develop a mindset of humility, prayer, seeking God’s face, and obedience, the bible tells us that God hears us and heals our land.

“if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” – 2 Chronicles 7:14

See, when we develop the mind of Christ, everything we think to request of God glorifies Jesus (for we have the same mind as Him) and so the Father hears us and grants us those requests (see John 14:13 – 14). Thus, when we tell the mountain to be moved, it is moved. When we tell the devil to flee, He flees. When trials and tribulations come, they do not stand a chance against us. Hallelujah! But God does not stop there! He also rains down righteousness upon us until the land of our hearts is restored and the fruit of love, joy, peace, faithfulness, gentleness, kindness, patience, goodness, and self-control is produced. He transforms us into ‘the one’.

We will examine the practical ways to develop the mind of Christ together in the concluding parts of the Mind of Christ. Please stay tuned.

Food for Thought: We cannot truly be ‘the one’ for our families until we develop the mind-set of ‘The One’ which consists of humility, prayer, seeking God, and obedience.

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I Am a Good Christian, So Why Am I Not Being Blessed?

What Am I Doing Wrong?

Many of us miss out on the blessings that God wants to bestow upon us because we think we have not sinned – that we have no sin to confess. We say ‘I have not done anything wrong, so I have not sinned and so have no sin to confess’. We say this because we erroneously think that sin occurs in the doing; in our actions. But this is not what the bible teaches us about sin. See, if sin was solely based on actions (obeying a set of rules), then apostle Paul would have been sinless! We know this because he tells us that he was blameless (guiltless) with regards to the righteousness (purity or holiness) that comes from the law or works (see Philippians 3:6). But Paul knew better than to think he had no sin because he was flawless in obeying the ordinances of the law. He knew his righteousness was like a filthy rag (see Isaiah 64:6) in the sight of God and that only God could impart righteousness onto him (see 2 Corinthians 5:21)!

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: We can be perfect in our actions and still be full of sin, for sin is not measured by how well we are able to keep the law.

The question then is this: If sin is not about actions, when have I sinned? Jesus gives us the answer in the following passage:

“But I say to you that whoever looks at woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart” – Matthew 5:27

Jesus is saying here that adultery (which is a sin) has already taken place when it reaches our hearts. In other words, we have to pay attention to our heart intentions. It is important to state that Jesus did not say ‘committed adultery with her in his mind’. If Jesus had said this, then sin would occur the moment we are tempted in our minds. But this is not so, for temptation is not sin. The scriptures tell us that Jesus Himself was tempted as a man in this world, but he did not sin (see Hebrews 4:15). Therefore, Jesus did not sin not because He was not tempted, but because He did not allow the temptation to reach His heart; He did not allow the temptation to linger long enough in His mind to enter His heart, but rather rebuked it away with the Word of God. Hallelujah!

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: Temptation only becomes sin when it crosses the barrier between our mind and enters into our hearts.

It is because sin has already taken place when temptation enters our hearts that the bible tells us that we deceive ourselves and that the truth is not in us if we say we have no sin (see 1 john 1:8). So you ask – how can I not sin? Well, here it is. The only way not to have any sin in our heart is to walk non-stop in the Spirit; we have to walk perfectly in the Spirit like Jesus did. Note that the bible tells us that if we are not walking in the Spirit, then we end up walking in the flesh or in sin (see Galatians 5:16). So, if you can master walking in the Spirit 24/7 for the rest of your life, then congratulations! You have no sin. If like us mere mortals (and you are being honest with yourself) you slip out of your Spirit-walk, then you have to confess your sins (see 1 John 1:9). The Hebrew word for sin (hata) literally means to ‘miss the mark’. We miss the mark when we are not walking in the Spirit. Conversely, we do not miss the mark when are walking in the Spirit (abiding in Him); this is why the bible says that whoever abides in Him does not sin (see 1 John 3:6). See, the challenge we fail is that of abiding in Him. It is not enough that He abides in us (that we have the Spirit), but we have to abide in Him ( walk in the Spirit). This is what Paul implores us to do (see Galatians 5:25).

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: If we say we have no sin, we are saying that we are walking perfectly in the Spirit. If we say we are walking in the Spirit perfectly, we have already deceived ourselves.

Now that we know we have fallen short, we have to check our hearts to see what is in there that is keeping us from God’s best. Is it the sin of unforgiveness? Is it lust? Is it envy or jealousy or pride? What is it? See, just because we put up all the barriers and boundaries we want so that we do not act on what is in our hearts does not mean we have no sin. All it means is that we are at best trying to keep ourselves and others from harm, and at worst hiding who we truly are by saying ‘see, my actions are flawless, therefore I am a righteous person’.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: We fool ourselves when we do not take care of our sinful hearts (not sinful actions). While our actions determine whether other people are blessed, it is our heart intentions that determine whether we are blessed for those actions – for God cannot bless sin and disobedience.

Yes, God in His mercy can still pull us undeservedly out of situations and grant us favor, but with sinful hearts, we never experience the fullness of the riches of the inheritance that He has for us. To keep our hearts from being infiltrated by the temptations we endure, we must guard it with the sword of the Spirit (meditating on the word of God), prayer, command our angels to do battle on our behalf, and rebuke the enemy with His words flowing from our mouths. We must stay vigilant, humble, and surrendered.

When we fail to realize that sin occurs in the heart, we fail to put up barriers between our mind and heart and so we fall into sin immediately. Most of us spend our lives putting up all sorts of barriers (including locking ourselves away from the world because everything causes us to fall) between our heart and our actions without realizing that we have already sinned. It is those of us that do this that are always wondering why God is not moving in our lives! To this we usually fall into the trap of more legalistic law keeping or we simply convince ourselves that God does not have particular goodies for us! As if God withholds goodies from His children (see Matthew 7:11)

Food for Thought: If you are not eating of the good of the land, go to the doctor (see Paging Doc Jesus) to check your heart for you may very well have heart disease.

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Stop Being a Jonah – Answer God’s Call Willingly

Stop Running Away

If we are not impressed by our gifts, abilities, and talents (because we know everything we have is from God and by the grace of God), then we should not be depressed by our weaknesses (because our weaknesses keep us humble and reliant on the saving power of Christ).

God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness (see 2 Corinthians 12:9). If any of us think that we have conquered all our weaknesses and have arrived at our destination in life, then we have become puffed up and are on our way to a downfall. Paul puts it this way:

“For though I desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth…” – 2 Corinthians 12:6

When we truly realize how much we need God and how nothing we accomplish is by our own strength, we become maximally useful to carry out His will. See, God foreknew all of us before we were born and called each one of us to achieve a particular purpose (good work).

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 2:10

Shying away from God’s purpose is disobedience so we should not do it since it displeases Him. Furthermore, its a fool’s game! But why?

Here is why. As children of God, the Spirit yearns jealously for us (see James 4:5). We can run around in the wilderness for years trying to dodge the purpose to which He has called us –using every excuse in the book – but He will use people, situations, and circumstances to break us down and get our attention. No matter how hard we try, we find that His purpose cannot be withheld from Him and that what He has ordained will get done, for no word that He has spoken can ever return back to Him void (see Isaiah 55:11).

“I know that You can do everything, And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.” – Job 42:2

A good example of someone that tried not to do what God called him to do was Jonah. When he was given his orders, the first thing He did was head in the opposite direction.  Being self-righteous and disobedient, he almost caused a boat to sink and had to spend time in the belly of a whale before he finally headed to Nineveh to deliver God’s message. As hard-headed as he was, God’s purpose was accomplished through him – not because of Him, but despite of Him. Jonah endured unnecessary hardship because of his disobedience. In the end, it was all for naught.

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: Running away from God’s purpose in our life is pointless and is life’s biggest time waster. If He has chosen us, His desires will be fulfilled through us no matter how much of a Jonah we become.

And just like Jonah, we become miserable if we do not align our hearts with the purpose of God, for even after Jonah delivered the message to the people of Nineveh and they repented, he wanted God to take him out. Seriously Jonah!

For those of us that answer God’s call, we can be assured that If He has chosen us, He will strengthen us. Just as He strengthened Moses and gave him the words to speak to the Pharaoh and made him a great leader, He will do the same for us as long as we walk in obedience – so we need not fear. His strength is made perfect in our weakness.

The story of Gideon highlights the strength of God working in human weakness. Gideon was a man who started out with little faith. In fact, he did not really believe in what God promised and thus became the first “fleece-thrower” (see Judges 6:36 – 40).  Yet, God called him a mighty man of valor and persevered with Him – showing Gideon that He is a mighty God. It was this same Gideon that did not question God when He trimmed his army from 34,000 to 300 before granting him victory over the Midianites. Now that took some faith!

Lightbulb MomentLight-bulb moment: If stubborness and lack of faith could not stop God from achieving his purpose through Jonah and Gideon, respectively, it will not stop Him from using you.

Food for Thought: You signed up to be used by God for His purpose when you signed up with Jesus, so stop fighting it! He will have His way anyway.

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