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]

 

 

Contradictions?

Pass or Fail, it’s all part of the sanctification process

In preparing for work this morning, I thought these random thoughts worthy of sharing:

  • If I tell you to have faith but I walk by sightcontradiction
  • If I talk about victory and but live defeatedcontradiction
  • If I say trust God but seek Man as my source … contradiction
  • If I sing praises unto God but am ungratefulcontradiction
  • If they need Jesus but I never share the gospelcontradiction
  • If I cry woe is me but never seek the Comfortercontradiction
  • If I write about joy but my attitude is wretchedcontradiction
  • If Christ is head of my life but my flesh reignscontradiction
  • If I love Jesus but hate any person for any reason … contradiction
  • If I have a church home but seldom attend & supportcontradiction
  • If God’s Word is true but I agree with the world’s viewcontradiction
  • If I’m God’s child but He has no authority in my lifecontradiction
  • If I judge people’s sin and believe I’m righteouscontradiction
  • If I’m always giving advice but won’t take correctioncontradiction
  • If I post this in all humility as my random thoughts on today and someone takes it personal and is offendedit’s a

013019-contradictioninsert

[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]

Copyright © Speak True Life, Wanda J. Murry, January 30, 2019

Providential Reliance & Security

The only infallible Source for a secure life…

Last week I mentioned how God coaches us through His providence. I like the definition for providence found in Webster’s 1828 (3) dictionary that says it this way:

In theology, the care and superintendence which God exercises over his creatures. He that acknowledges a creation and denies a providence involves himself in a palpable contradiction; for the same power which caused a thing to exist is necessary to continue its existence.

This is comforting as a child of God because we need care with oversight that gives us direction, and who is better able to provide this than the One with omnipotent authority.  Because of our human nature, we can easily to go astray and operate outside of God’s authority.  We see this example demonstrated in the Old Testament continually.

  • Can you relate?
  • Is there a time that comes to mind where you know you strayed from God’s will?
  • Have you ever found yourself to be the inattentive one in your relationship with Christ?

Psalm 119:176 is profitable for memorization for those times when we realize that we are following our own ways more than God’s.  It’s a nice little wake-up call that says:

I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek thy servant; for I do not forget thy commandments.

Without a doubt, and for this very reason, God’s children need to stick close to God, the great I Am.  The reality check is that He alone is the source that:

  • Feeds us and causes us to grow: John 6:35 (KJV)

And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.

  • Illuminates His truth and knowledge in this dark world: John 8:12 (KJV)

Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

  • Gave His life to lead, protect and govern us: John 10:11 (KJV)

I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep.

He is the only source that will provide the resources necessary to perfect new beginnings and grow us in the truth and knowledge of Him.

Copyright © Speak True Life, Wanda J. Murry, January 9, 2019

 

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

Dear Future Me

Dying daily that I might live …

Dear Future Me,

I am so glad that you awakened out of your slumber (Proverbs 6:9-11). The Father was so happy when you realized that you had fallen into the conversation of the Laodiceans (Revelation 3:14-17).  Even now, you never cease to be amazed at how liberating it is to die daily and empty yourself of that old man – self.  You never imagined the magnitude of the plans God wanted to work through you.  Thank you for learning to set your affection on things above (Colossians 3:1-2) every day.  Thank you for allowing the Father to transform you into the New Creature (2 Corinthians 5:17) He created at your spiritual birth.  Stay humble as you continue to put on the New Man and put off that old dead flesh.  Continue to pray daily, unceasingly (1 Thessalonians 5:17) so your walk in Spirit and Truth (John 4:23) grows stronger as your Love for God grows more intimate.

I Love you, but I praise God for maturing you in the knowledge that no one can ever love us as much as God Loves Us, a fact demonstrated in Christ – His Son!!

black and white dead die diving

 

In the Shadow of Forewarning

Some things are right before our eyes …

Copyright © Wanda Murry, August 31, 2018

Forewarn (Webster):

To admonish beforehand; To inform previously; To give previous notice; To caution beforehand

Forewarn (Strong’s Concordance):

To exhibit under the eyes; To exemplify (instruct, admonish); To show by making known future things

This I know because it has been foretold,

That in these last days, perilous times would come,

Where me, myself & I would be lovers of their selves;

Where the heart would covet, boast, and proudly ignore.

Where blasphemers rail against knowledge to disobey parents,

Unthankful for their welfare, and unholy in their cares.

Without natural affection, trucebreakers who falsify pacts.

These false accusers fill jails; incontinent slackers they are.

Under fierce attacks, they are despisers of those that are good.

Traitors who prey relentlessly, always heady in mischief.

Highminded, they are lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.

Delusional in their form of godliness, they deny the power of the source.

Beware my sisters, for they creep into houses to lead silly women captive;

Catering to those laden with sins and willingly led away with divers lusts.

Beware brethren of ever learning, when acts and deeds uncover

The inability to come to the knowledge of the truth,

Under the shadow of what is still yet to materialize …

abstract ancient architecture art

4And I say unto you my friends, Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.  5But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.  Luke 12:4-5

 

Are You Ready?

Not all exams allow a retest …

Copyright © Wanda Murry, August 28, 2018

Lately, I find myself thinking more and more about the day when I will come face to face with Christ.  I’m fairly sure I won’t be able to say anything!  And, although crying is a release mechanism for me, I will have a glorified body, so I’m pretty sure that’s not an option.

It’s not just standing before him though – I’m sure of my salvation and it’s not in question.  What I wonder about is if he’ll be pleased with what I’ve done with His gift over these 40 plus years, and if I have represented Him well.

man wearing gray sweater in selective focus photography
Photo by Segopotso Makhutja on Pexels.com

Every time I think about it I remember a scene from the Bruce Willis movie “The Sixth Sense.”  Toward the end, the little boy is finally explaining to his mom that he sees and talks to the dead. He tells his mom that his grandmother said her answer was “Yes” to a question the mother had.  Asking his mom what the question was, the mother responds, “I asked if I make her proud?

I only get one day at a time to make God proud.  I know He doesn’t expect me to be perfect, but at the end of each day, my hope is that God is proud of something I did to magnify His glory.  Daily, the thought of meeting my Savior face-to-face is a welcome desire.  Yet, there are other moments when I ask myself if I am truly ready to stand in His presence?

Definitely a reflective moment worth more than just a cursory thought!

1 Thessalonians 4:16-18  (KJV)

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.