As we grow in Christ, we find many choices we made in our past were incorrect and unhealthy. The choices we made pertaining to what we allowed to “feed us” needed to be reversed by making the right choices in these areas. Instead of focusing on the wrong ones we made in the past, we choose today, and day-by-day, what is best for us.
God, through fasting and prayer, enables us to make decisions that glorify Him. We learn to make better choices when we eat, turn on the TV, join a conversation, fellowship, or any of the other decisions we make every day. We learn to make the right choices in what we allow into our lives.
Along the way, we will still make some wrong choices, but when that happens, it’s important to keep pressing forward. The enemy attempts to bring guilt and condemnation, which, if received, can lead us to make more wrong choices. All choices are opportunities to change our lives. We align our will with God’s will as He leads. Only by the grace of God can we keep walking in the newness He brings about, from glory to glory!
Romans 13:14 “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.”
When we are born again, all things are new. We have a new life in Christ. Before, the law had us bound, but now we are delivered from the law. We were far from God, but now we are near. We were in darkness, but now we are in light. We walked in sin, but now we put off the works of darkness. The mystery of the Christ abiding in us was hidden, but now it is revealed.
Moment by moment, we walk in renewal, transforming into the image of Christ. We cannot focus on what still needs to be changed, in ourselves or others. We are not yet the way we will be, but surely, we are not the way we were. This and that might have been yesterday, but now we are in Christ, and we walk in the newness of life, day by day.
In our daily walk, the opposites of these truths confront us. We conquer all things that are contrary to our divine identity through the grace of the Lord. We pursue trusting the not yet. Before, when we were going through trials, we didn’t know how to stand; but now, trial by trial, we go from triumph to triumph and, from glory to glory!
1 Peter 2:10 “… who once were not a people, but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.”
Our risen Lord Jesus often shows up through an unexpected person, at an unexpected time and in an unexpected place; but we can expect He will show up! We may not recognize Him right away, but as He moves, we reach that place where we undeniably declare, “It is the Lord!”
God gives us wisdom through others. We may not recognize it as being from Him, but it will bear witness with our spirit and cause us to take heed and listen because of the authority it carries. We don’t easily detect His timing because it happens when we don’t see it being possible. The place where He manifests Himself is usually unforeseen. It’s not how, where, and when it seems workable that God moves. We can expect the unexpected with joy and peace.
The Lord always produces extraordinary results. All that comes from Him is not ordinary: it’s uncommon, unfamiliar, and so unconventional. What is certain is that He shows up in His astonishing, exceptional, and remarkable way! We expect to stand in awe and proclaim, “It is the Lord!” from glory to glory!
John 21:6-7 And He said to them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast, and now they were not able to draw it in because of the multitude of fish. Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” Now when Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on his outer garment (for he had removed it), and plunged into the sea.”
It’s when we are faithful where we are that God opens doors for more in our lives. Our labor of love is not in vain in the Lord. He sees all that we do for His glory. He knows when we go the extra mile in our duties. We delight in going above and beyond the norm. With His spirit of excellence working in and through us, we can expect promotion.
When Paul thanks God for His enablement, he connects it with having been counted faithful. In the Bible, to be enabled means to be empowered. It’s not just being able to accomplish something in the natural; it’s doing it supernaturally by the power of God. When our focus is to remain faithful to God, we can trust His empowerment to manifest.
We represent the Lord and do all things as unto Him. He releases His power as we obey His leading. We stay committed to what He has placed in our hands. All that we do in private for Him, He rewards openly. Others might not seem to notice, appreciate, or affirm our actions; but God surely does. With divine ability, He gives us more responsibility. We can trust His faithfulness, from glory to glory!
1 Timothy 1:12 “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry.”
We don’t give up; we give it up. As we give ourselves up to God’s care, we surrender all. From that place of surrender, we can resist controlling forces and wrong influences. We become quicker to set healthy boundaries. No longer do we back down and allow compromises to infiltrate our lives. When war strikes in our soul, we find we don’t surrender to despair but to hope; not to fear, but to faith; not to defeat, but to victory. Most of all, we do not surrender to the flesh, but to the Spirit.
A woman was tempted to commit adultery, and it happened suddenly without her noticing. One conversation with someone escalated quickly into a hug, a touch, and then a kiss. At that moment, she saw herself giving in and surrendering to something that would ultimately destroy her. But in that same moment, she surrendered to God and could walk away from the situation. We might find ourselves in situations where we need to surrender to God moment by moment so that we don’t give into negative thoughts or succumb to outside influences.
Giving up is not an option. The only power able to keep us victorious is the power of God. We lift our hands, not in a gesture of defeat, but as a gesture of praise. We walk free, from glory to glory!
James 4:10 “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
Hopelessness carries a sense of death to possibilities of a better tomorrow. It is unexpected and accompanied by grief and sorrow because of unmet expectations. Only in and through the Lord can we hold fast to our confessions of hope, without wavering. Continuing to expect joyfully may make us weary. Disappointments bring doubt and hesitation and can hinder us from fully hoping again.
Our hope is being victorious in the Lord, not in hoping for this or that. Hope is a verb; it demands an object. When our hope is in the Lord, hopelessness cannot remain. Hope is not a power we rely on. The one we place our hope in can bring forth what is above and beyond what we hope for …as we rest in Him. We hold fast with a sense of holding firm, securing, or tightening our confession of faith. Truly, He holds us in the palm of His hand.
Circumstances of life may make us feel there is little reason for continuing to hope, but the One who made the promise is faithful and will not let us down. Temporary afflictions cannot hinder the permanent increase of the glory of God, from glory to glory!
Hebrews 10:23 “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.”