How easy it is to blame others for our unhappiness, but we are only unhappy when something other than Christ has become our life.
Let us wash the cosmetics from our souls and look at the unadorned condition of our hearts.
We have received too much from God to allow ourselves opportunities for unbelief. We have received too many gifts and privileges to allow a grumbling, murmuring heart to disqualify us of our destiny.
The conflict will always beyond your strength.The enemy always pushes us beyond our personal, inbred, preset limits concerning how far we’ll go for God: “Here’s how far I’m going to love, this is how many times I’ll turn the other cheek.” The test kills the limits of our humanity, till we’re like Christ in everything. We’re left with a choice: Become Christlike or gradually shrivel into superficial hypocrites: angry people who have stopped walking with God, who blame others for our bitterness.
I tell you, if you are serious about wanting to be like Christ, He is going to put you in circumstances where your only true choice is to become like Him.
Here they are, Lord Jesus, my hidden sins. I bring them out of the secret chamber of my heart. I take them out of the darkness and expose them to Your light. Lord, You have promised You will execute Your word upon the earth, thoroughly and quickly. Oh God, thoroughly cleanse my heart; purify me quickly!
Satan has access to the domain of darkness, but he can only occupy those areas where mankind, through sin, has allowed him.
Why is the Lord so attracted to the lowly? He knows the weaker His servant, the more genuinely he will give glory to God. So the Lord kept Moses weak, and maintained his weakness throughout the wilderness. Forget Hollywood’s version of Moses, God never healed the stammer… Who would not be tempted to plead: Hurry Lord – heal his stutter! Yet, the Red Sea parted. God was never troubled by His servant’s flawed oratory skills. This is the glory of the cross: self is crucified by it so that Christ may be revealed in power.
Dear friends, let us shake off the intoxication of compromise. Too many of us are entertained by things we should weep over. God destroyed the world during Noah’s day because of violence, yet we sit before televisions and in theaters amused by violence. The Lord ultimately destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of their twisted morality, yet we do nothing to protest similar perversity entering our lands.
Rest precedes rule. Peace precedes power. Do not seek to rule over the devil until you are submitting to God’s rule over you. The focal point of all victory comes from seeking God until you find Him, and having found Him, allowing His Presence to fill your spirit with His peace. From full assurance at His right hand, as we rest in His victory, let us rule in the midst of our enemies.
God can never entrust His Kingdom to anyone who has not been broken of pride, for pride is the armor of darkness itself.
There will be no “knights in shining armor” in God’s kingdom; our armor will have many dings and dents. No, no perfect Hollywood heroes will ride to save the day; just wearied saints to look to God and, in weakness, find Christ’s strength. This, indeed, is the essence of God’s kingdom: divine greatness manifest in common people.
Too many Christians become bitter and angry in the conflict. If we descend into hatefulness, we have already lost the battle. We must cooperate with God in turning what was meant for evil into a greater good within us. This is why we bless those who would curse us: It is not only for their sakes but to preserve our own soul from its natural response toward hatred.
We can be assured that each step deeper into the Lord’s Presence will reveal areas in our hearts which need to be cleansed. Do not be afraid. When the Spirit shows you areas of sin, it is not to condemn you, but to cleanse you.
The thankful heart sees the best part of every situation. It sees problems and weaknesses as opportunities, struggles as refining tools, and sinners as saints in progress.
The true measure of spirituality is not how angry we become toward sinners, but how Christlike; our mission is not to see men destroyed, but redeemed.
The church for too long has followed Casper, the friendly ghost instead of seeking the fire of the Holy Spirit. We have turned limp at the thought of our own cross; we faint when we think of suffering or sacrifice. Beloved, it is time to embrace the fire of God’s Presence. It is the fire that purifies our sacrifice.
More churches have been destroyed by the accuser of the brethren and its faultfinding than by either immorality or misuse of church funds. So prevalent is this influence in our society that, among many, faultfinding has been elevated to the status of a “ministry”!
Any time we open ourselves up to fear, we fall prey to his deceptions and intimidations. Yet, if we submit our hearts to God and stand in faith, we can resist those first fearful thoughts. As we yield to God we can master our reactions to fear and the enemy will soon flee.
The faith that relentlessly asks God, also pleases God. Now, as the fullness of the times unfolds, as the world around us clothes itself in prophetic fulfillments, let us put away fear and repent of withdrawal.
Up until the moment Christ enters our lives, surrounding our souls there exists a hard outer shell, a “survival nature,” which protects us against life’s harshest offences. The shell is necessary while we are in the world, but becomes an enemy to our new life in Christ, where the nature of Christ becomes our shelter. Thus, as the shell of a seed, a nut or an egg must be broke before its inner life comes forth, so it is with us: the “shell” of our outer nature must also break in order to free the Spirit of Christ to arise in our hearts.
I realize that many Christians have not been praying because they have not accepted the reality of war in which we find ourselves. There is a spiritual war mode that we must appropriate. It is an aggressive stance that we take against evil. It is governed by love for people, but it is fearless and uncompromising with the powers of darkness that manipulate people to fulfill evil plans.
To those whose attitude is just Jesus and me I say, it is wonderful you found Jesus. But you cannot truly have Jesus and simultaneously not do what He says. The outgrowth of love and faith in Christ is love and faith like Christ’s, which means we are committed, even as He is, to His people.
Love is God’s preservative. It surrounds our souls with a power greater than the power of the devil and the world around us. It keeps us balanced; it insulates us against the hostility that exists in our world. Love is the shelter of the Most High; it is the substance of the Place of Immunity.