Competition

Competition

As the Spirit of God leads us to move together in unity, competition is eliminated. We are called to complete one another; not compete against each other. Competition can hinder every member of the body from flourishing in the place God has them positioned. In the world, competition is celebrated, but this is not the way of the Kingdom.

We are of one mind, and one accord. We are all one in Christ. We are one body, one family. When one is blessed, we all rejoice. We do not compare our achievements with others because they are not separated; they complete each other. At the pool of Bethesda, Jesus showed us how to handle competition. At that pool, whenever the water was stirred the first one who got in the water would be healed. Jesus went to a lame man who was in the very back, not fighting to get ahead, and he wasn’t helped by others. Jesus told him, ‘Rise, take up your bed and walk.’ Jesus didn’t help the lame man be the first one in the pool; He took him out of the competition altogether. What the Lord calls you to do, He will enable you to do, regardless of any opposition expressed through competition.

The Lord tells us to rise up and walk in what He tells us to do, looking unto His spiritual ways. In the natural it may appear as though another person has a position better than ours, but there is always more we don’t know regarding someone’s life. The best position is the one we all have–in Christ. Our desire is to be who He calls us to be, to do what He calls us to do and to rest in knowing how much He loves and values us, from glory to glory!

John 5:7-8 “The sick man answered Him, ‘Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Rise, take up your bed and walk.’ ”  

 

Look!

Look!

As we look to our Lord, He helps us look in three directions taking us to a place of trust and hope in Him. We look back. We remember what God has already helped us through, and how He moved in our lives in greater ways than anticipated. We see how we have grown in the Lord and the freedom we now have in areas where we were bound.

We look within. We allow the Spirit of Christ to bring light to every area in need of healing. We humbly face ourselves, confront in order to conquer, and walk in freedom. What doesn’t match our divine identity is examined. We increase in the knowledge of who we are in Christ, and who Christ is in us: the hope of glory. We look forward. He brings a new perspective day-by-day. We look ahead with full confidence knowing our paths are shining brighter and brighter. What God has prepared for us is so much greater than what we could ask or think!

When the future appears cloudy, let’s look again. We have victory in our past. We are being renewed inwardly day-by-day and we rejoice in the glory that will be manifested in our future. We have hope, surety in our steps, and most of all confidence of complete deliverance out of any trial we might face from glory to glory!

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

 

Reaping

Reaping

We can trust that our obedience to the Lord in even the smallest things brings forth glorious treasures at a later time. It is written in the Word of God that if we do not grow weary in well doing, in due time we reap the rewards. We do not do anything to receive something in return, and we do not lose heart, knowing that when the Lord leads us to sow, we will reap a harvest.

What we sow may be time, money or talents. It’s given with love, and with love unconditionally. It may not appear to be much, but it is, because it’s for the Lord. It may not appear to be appreciated, but it is, by the Lord. It may not measure up to how much we would like to give, but it’s multiplied, in the Lord. We give ourselves to the Lord and He gives through us. When our due season to reap is upon us, the enemy attempts to make us lose heart. In those moments the loving and giving heart of God, that dwells in our heart, is anointed to flow even more. Our reward is in Christ and all the blessings that come from Him.

When we obey the Lord, immediate results may not be seen, but we can trust His glory will be seen. We do not lose heart; we do not grow weary in well doing. Whatever He asks us to do, we delight in doing. We obey with love and patience–and without complaint. We know His glory will be seen, from glory to glory!

Galatians 6:9-10 “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.” 

 

Growing Pains

Growing Pains

Our Heavenly Father’s will is for His children to have the best in every area of their lives. What He has prepared for us might not be clear, but we can trust that it is much more than we can ask or think. At times, it might be difficult to let go of the present because of the uncertainty of the future, the unknown. It’s in understanding our inheritance that we can walk by faith and trust our Daddy.

Parents know what their children are able to do because they watch them mature. They know that in order for them to walk in their ability to do more, they must let go of what they did at an earlier age. For example, when they began teething and were being prepared for solid food, they were weaned from drinking out of a bottle. When the bottle is removed, children are upset because they don’t understand it’s in preparation for something they will enjoy even more. As we grow up as sons of God, there are some things that our Heavenly Father removes because He has more for us.

Each new step in our development requires a step of faith. Even if we could see what He has prepared for us, we wouldn’t understand it fully because it’s moving into the unknown. All we can do is trust that Father knows best and enjoy our growth, from glory to glory! 

Galatians 4:6-7 “And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, ‘Abba, Father!’ Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”

 

Extra! Extra!

Extra! Extra!

As much as we seek the more of God, God seeks the more for us. In order to bring us to what He has for us, the Lord leads us to challenge ourselves. Less of our flesh and more of the spirit causes us to press through our human limitations. Through our Divine Identity we witness His abilities flowing through us to reach for the above and beyond.

We challenge our bodies when we work out in the natural. In the spirit, we are driven by the Lord to challenge ourselves. Whatever time we read the Word, pray or worship will be increased as we exercise our faith. As we minister to others, we will reach out again and again and walk in a greater measure of love, patience and gentleness. We purpose to excel. The difference Jesus makes in our lives can be seen by our diligence, perseverance and endurance. We don’t seek to be perfect, but to be excellent, because that’s who Christ is in our lives. It means we make errors but don’t give up. Instead of fear of failure we have faith to succeed, from strength to strength.

In Christ we are extra ordinary people, going the extra mile, doing extra on our jobs, and taking extra steps in our relationships. We do the best we can with what we have moment by moment, from glory to glory!

Colossians 3:17 “And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” 

 

It’s Personal

It’s Personal

Each of us encounters the risen Lord. One primary way we encounter Him is through personal encounters unique for every person — intimate and private.

We grow in our awareness that God knows and understands us with love and compassion. What we find in the process is that God draws us to know and understand Him. He does so personally: to a gardener, He reveals Himself and speaks through the gardening process; to the fisherman, through fishing; to the shepherd through sheep;  to a parent, through a child. He meets us where we are and ministers to us through personal experiences and situations so we can know Him for ourselves. Mary recognized Jesus after He had risen when He called her by name. This showed His knowledge, love and care for her like only He could. When we seek the Lord, amid our tears, we will find Him closer than we ever expected.

The personal relationship we have with the Lord is such an individual experience we cannot compare it with others. We can never think that one is experiencing the Lord more than another, because it’s not the more or less, it’s the one on one. It can never be the same, because God’s ways are new every day. Familiarity can hinder our hearing from God through a fresh approach. We are taught not to take things personally, but that doesn’t apply to what comes from the Lord: it is personal, from glory to glory!

John 20:15-16 Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, “Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him, “Rabboni!” (which is to say, Teacher).

 

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