Body Strengthening

Set your affection on things above – Colossians 3:2

A brother-in-Christ, Dedrick Abbott, posted the below comment on Facebook. It’s a topic that me and my boss talk about all the time!

Dedrick Abbott  1 hr  Followers of Christ should be more interested in building each other up than tearing each other apart. It is easy to be critical, but when we bear with others we enter into their story and the little things that cause them to act the way that they do. This is an opportunity for the church to be counter-culture to the world around us. We should try to value others for who they are and not simply for what they can do.

It’s true … the body of the church has played a pretty good role in causing this growing lean toward disdain for “church” followers of Jesus Christ. It’s true … a lot of churches have to make a greater effort in drawing the hurt, abused, fearful, confused and lost into our bosom (a familiar source of protection, security or affection) in our bodies of worship.

It starts, however, with INDIVIDUALS who truly love the Lord and who purposely DEMONSTRATE that LOVE person-to-person. It requires both the church-goer and the Believer to come to understand that not everyone is mature enough to operate in the will of God’s command that we love each other. Loving others in spite of their faults is a learned heart attitude that can only be grasped by those who truly have allowed God full access to their heart.

In all the years I attended church from my youth up into my young adult years, it took me until I was around 37 yo to recognize that not everyone who says, Lord, Lord, does God’s will. I learned that not everyone who attends church is a “Believer” who practices godly living. At the end of the day, I had to make up my mind to put my focus on God and not people. I had to stop allowing people to be the deciding factor in how, why, when and where I worshipped the Lord of my salvation.

woman writing in white board

 

The lessons taught me to make a personal choice to walk with Christ and focus on Him instead:

  • I choose to learn more about Him for myself – not accept second-hand knowledge
  • I choose to know Him – not just accept someone else’s experiences of Him
  • I choose to seek Him – not through a preacher or teacher but through His Word
  • I choose to serve Him out of my heart belief of His deity – not look to flesh for His image

I learned early in life that man was a sinful creature, flawed, and in need of a savior. It was in my immature and infantile stage as a Believer that I allowed the fallacy of man to cripple my relationship commitment and dedicated service to Christ. God kept reminding me through situations and circumstances that I needed His umbrella of love and protection more than man’s. Because of God’s patience, I was able to grow into the Woman of God I am today, firmly committed and settled in heart, mind, and spirit to stand firm in Christ alone. Christ is the umbrella that keeps me from being overtaken by the desires of my flesh and the enemy’s destructive vices.

I can tell you I spiritually feel like a young 20-something in Christ! My faith continues to grow stronger every day; I see the world for what it is—a battlefield for a spiritual kingdom that has already has been designated as the inheritance to the One who sits at the right hand of His Father – Jesus Christ.

It is true, there is much work to be done within and without the church, and it’s sad that those who need to make their standing in Christ sure are still busy looking outward instead of inward. For those doing their part, I say God Bless You and Keep You Strong on the path of His righteousness. The greatest prayer the Body of Christ can utter continually is that God would help us individually examine ourselves:

  • How is my relationship with Christ?black and white blackboard business chalkboard
  • Who am I sharing Christ with?
  • What is my service lane in the Body?
  • Where do I exercise my servanthood to Christ?
  • When has my light brought others near to Christ?

Attitude is a huge deal when it comes to operating in the world as ministers of reconciliation and Christ representatives. It’s crucial in these last days that the Body of Christ gives more focus to redeeming the lost from the hand of our enemy and incorporate more of sharing Christ into our areas of purpose. Remember, the most important call on every believer’s life is the call to witness – to share the gospel of Christ with a lost world and bring sinners into the saving grace of Salvation.

Let us gather the spiritual tools that enable us to strengthen the weak and draw the hurting. I was hurt in the church many times. It took finding one person in the Body to love on me. My need for Christ helped me consistently get back up and go back into the Body. I came to understand by-and-by that at the Judgment Seat of Christ there is no finger pointing. Each of us will stand alone before our sovereign God while a panoramic view of our life showing the good – the bad the ugly, and the abominable flashes before the heavenly hosts. That should make you shiver.

Church Body, we definitely need to get our act together so we don’t do more damage to the Body of Christ and God’s name. It might be better for some to become or remain “uncover Christians” so we don’t scatter those with a real desirous need of the Savior. What my brother-in-Christ spoke today should give all of God’s children reason to pause—consider their ways—and GET RIGHT CHURCH, because we will soon be going home!!

To my weaker brothers/sisters-in-Christ, to the hurting, and to the lost who have judged the Body of Christ – I’d like to make this suggestion: Find one person in the Body who demonstrates God’s love and care and then draw near to them. Most of the time this is called Discipleship in churches. They’ll help you grow in your relationship with Christ. I’ve seen process in action and everyone benefits, including the Church Body.  The only way you’ll learn to stand in Christ in the midst of the spiritually immature is for you to seek to know Christ intimately yourself. Doing this will help you stand by faith as an individual while operating in faith corporately.

women watching gray tablet computer

Copyright © Speak True Life, Wanda J. Murry, February 1, 2019

[Eternal security is found “in Christ” and there is a plan already in place to guide you to that road:  Romans 3:23, 6:23, 5:12, 10:9; 1 John 1:9]

 

 

CRAVINGS: What You Really Want!

Real satisfaction is only experienced through obtaining what your souls truly craves

Copyright © Speak True Life, Wanda Murry, June 22, 2018

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It is my belief that in mankind’s pursuits lays the desire for a connection to others beyond customary.  Hidden beneath society’s downward spiral into moral madness, and disguised as human rights, politics, justice and the rights of the people, lies very basic needs.  Every man, woman, and child has a need to be loved, a need to belong, and a need for true intimacy.

Mention the word intimacy and many things may come to mind, so let me clarify what I’m not talking about.  I’m not talking about that physical imitator passed off through verbal graphics of bodies intertwined while the heart remains tucked away untouched and unaffected.  I’m not talking about sharing space or pleasantries or moments of time with another. And, I’m not talking about a surface driven state of euphoria that incites our emotions.

Nope  —  I’m talking about i-n-t-i-m-a-c-y 

  • I’m talkinga longing for; an ardent (warm, affectionate, passionate) desire
    • “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.” Psalm 42:1
  • I’m talkinga very eager or urgent or fervent desire for
    • “O GOD, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land where no water is;” Psalm 63:1
  • I’m talkinga deep, almost painful craving
    • My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. Psalm 84:2

This desire occurs in the deepest, most remote part of our being.  It’s seated in our mind and in our heart. It has been covered, concealed and is often replaced with temporary idols in a vain attempt to escape the pain produced when it is unmet in its most genuine, sincere form.

Who on earth doesn’t crave a kindred relationship that makes your eyes light up, your heart warm over with deep appreciation, and your smile spread big and bright across your face?  Who hasn’t searched out the kind of intimacy that causes you to voluntarily and unconditionally open your arms to receive, to embrace, to take comfort in, and to bask under the protective covering of another!

black and white color splash fountain pen hand
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As much as we crave this intimacy, we’ll continue to fall short of experiencing such depth of heart as long as we skirt entering the portal of God, where true intimacy begins. As long as we are willing to run along the edge or remain on the border of detailed knowledge and close association with God, the mind, heart, and soul will continue to have a great thirst for intimacy.

I love the way “Till I Found You” by Phil Wickham paints a picture worth a thousand heartbeats!  DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT LISTENING to the video below.  In it you will find two beautiful pictures for all of us:

  • An intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, the source of Salvation where our hunger to be known is met with the confession of our mouth, and the heart belief of God’s all-knowing, all-seeing sovereignty; and
  • An intimate, loving, committed marriage where the man loves his wife as Christ loved the church, and the wife, in turn, reverences her husband.

 

 

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Song:   Till I Found YouPhilWickhamVEVO

Published on May 17, 2018

© 2018 Phil Wickham New song from Phil Wickham’s upcoming album “Living Hope.” Coming August 2018

 

Never lose sight of the fact that Christ came from his heavenly home specifically to create an opportunity to have intimacy with you by the redemptive power of his blood.  The Plan of Salvation is available to YOU!