DO YOU REALLY LOVE HIM?
“…… She has done a beautiful thing to me.” – Mark 14:6 (NIV)
If what we call love doesn’t take us beyond ourselves, it is not really love. If we have the idea that love is characterised as cautious, wise, sensible, shrewd, and never taken to extremes, we have missed the true meaning. This may describe affection and it may bring us a warm feeling, but it is not a true and accurate description of love.
Have you ever been driven to do something for God not because you felt that it was useful or your duty to do so, or that there was anything in it for you, but simply because you love Him? Have you ever realised that you can give things to God that are of value to Him? Or are you just sitting around daydreaming about the greatness of His redemption, while neglecting all the things you could be doing for Him? I’m not referring to works which could be regarded as divine and miraculous, but ordinary, simple human things – things which would be evidence to God that you are totally surrendered to Him. Have you ever created what Mary of Bethany created in the heart of the Lord Jesus? “She has done a good work for Me.”
There are times when it seems as if God watches to see if we will give Him even small gifts of surrender, just to show how genuine our love is for Him. To be surrendered to God is of more value than our personal holiness. Concern over our personal holiness causes us to focus our eyes on ourselves, and we become overly concerned about the way we walk and talk and look, out of fear of offending God.” . . . but perfect love casts out fear . . .” once we are surrounded to God – 1 John 4:18.
We should quit asking ourselves, “Am I of any use? and accept the truth that we are really not of much use to Him. The issue is never of being of use, but of being of value to God Himself. Once we are totally surrendered to God, He will work though us all the time.
THE DISCIPLINE OF SPIRITUAL PERSEVEARANCE
“Be still, and know that I am God . . .” – Psalm 46:10 (NIV)
Perseverance is more than endurance. It is endurance combined with absolute assurance and certainty that what we are looking for is going to happen. Perseverance means more than just hanging on, which may be only exposing our fear of letting go and falling. Perseverance is our supreme effort of refusing to believe that our hero is going to be conquered. Our greatest fear is not that we will be damned, but that somehow Jesus Christ will be defeated. Also, our fear is that the very things our Lord stood for – love, justice, forgiveness, and kindness among men – will not win out in the end and will represent an unattainable goal for us. Then there is the call to spiritual perseverance. A call not to hang on and do nothing with certainty that God will never be defeated.
If our hopes seem to be experiencing disappointment right now, it simply means that they are being purified. Every hope or dream of the human mind will be fulfilled if t is noble and of God. But one of the greatest stresses in life is the stress of waiting for God. He brings fulfilment, “since you have kept my command to endure patiently . . .” – Revelation 3:10.
Continue to persevere spiritually.
CALLED TO A HOLY LIFE
Continued from last week’s edition
Christian perfection is not and never can be human perfection. Christian perfection is the perfection of a relationship of God, which shows itself amid the irrelevancies of human life. When you obey the call of Jesus Christ, the first thing that strikes you is the irrelevancy of the things you have to do, and the next thing that strikes you is the fact that other people seem to be living perfectly consistent lives. Such lives are apt to leave you with the idea that God is unnecessary, and that by human effort and devotion we can reach the standard God wants. In a fallen world this can never be done. I am called to live in perfect relation to God so that my life produces a longing after God in other lives, not admiration for myself. Thoughts about myself hinder my usefulness to God. God is not after perfecting me to be a specimen in His show room; He is getting me to the place where He can use me. Let Him do what He likes.
Disposition and Deeds
“……..unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven – Matt.5:20 (NIV).”
The characteristic of a disciple is not that he does good things, but that he is good in motive because he has been made good by the super-natural grace of God. The only thing that exceeds right doing is right being. Jesus Christ came to put into any man who would let Him a new heredity, which would exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees. Jesus says if you are my disciple you must be right not only in your living, but in your motives, in your dreams, in the recesses of your mind. You must be so pure in your motives that God Almighty can see nothing to censure. Who can stand in the Eternal Light of god and have nothing for God to censure? Only the Son of God, and Jesus Christ claims that by His Redemption He can put into any man His own disposition, and make him as unsullied and as simple as a child. The purity, which God demands is impossible unless I can be remake within, and that is what Jesus, has undertaken to do by His Redemption.
No man can make himself pure by obeying law, Jesus does not give us rules and regulations; His teachings are truths that can only be interpreted by the disposition He puts in. The great marvel of Jesus Christ’s salvation is that He alters heredity. He does not alter human nature; He alters its mainspring.
The Bible says that we have not been given the spirit of timidity but rather a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7). Let us therefore not be intimidated when jibes are made about us being one of them – those “Chrife” people. Rather let us boldly make a clean break with every form of ungodly compromise, resisting all temptation to indulge in evil, no mater how rampant and normal they may be. Let us remember that when we run away from evil deeds, we are not cowards. On the contrary we are lion hearted and wise.
PS NOTE: Quotations from Oswald Chambers’ – My Utmost for His Highest
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