Additions

2 Peter 1: 5-8

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

This verse seems pertinent, not just to me but to all Christians. We all are works in progress, and will be until the day we die, but there is nothing wrong with expanding our knowledge of Christ, that we may better glorify Him.

For me personally, this is a verse that reminds me that I must not simply wait for Gods knowledge to come to me, but to actively seek it out, and through it glorify His name and work more and more with each increase in knowledge.

I have felt as though i have had a blessed day today, and I have felt God move through me. I hope to add all of these above things to my faith, that I may become a better Christian as a result.

“Come as you are, but don’t stay as you are”.

Have a blessed day.

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Additions

God and his role in the decisions you make.

Proverbs 3: 5-6

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.

I love this verse. I love it because it enables us, with trust that God will direct you, to remove all worries, lay them at His feet and let someone who is perfect deal with them.

In my devotional (A Man after God’s Own Heart, by Jim George), it says that “every major accomplishment requires a high level of commitment”, and I believe that is the same when it comes to faith.

I know full well, that I need to be a lot more committed when it comes to God, but I also know that He knows what my struggles are, and he will help so long as I ask for it and include him in the decision making process.

In the end, God gave us free will to do with as we please, so we have the free will not to include God and not to commit to God by leaving him out, but the risks we run by doing so are too great to do so.

I would like to leave the prayer that was at the end of this devotional, because what it says is true. We need to include God so that we may glorify Him with our actions and bless the lives of those around us

God, I commit my plans to You today. Help me to honour You in all I do. Thank You for guiding me so that my decisions may glorify You and bless the people around me. Amen

Have a blessed day.

God and his role in the decisions you make.

What is Gods grace?

Ephesians 2: 8-9

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves;it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

I have often wondered what Gods grace actually entails. Is it a state of serenity that comes from communion with God? Is it the way we feel when we act with compassion and happiness in His name, doing His work and spreading His word? Or is it something else entirely?

Psalm 84: 11

For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.

This verse suggests it is, at the very least, something that is bestowed upon those who walk with God. It does not suggest what it might be, but it certainly suggests that, whatever it is, it is given freely by God to all those who “walk uprightly”.

A number of verses mention grace being bestowed upon people:

Exodus 33: 17

So the Lord said to Moses, “I will also do this thing that you have spoken; for you have found grace in My sight, and I know you by name.”

Zecharia 12: 10

Let grace be shown to the wicked, Yet he will not learn righteousness; In the land of uprightness he will deal unjustly, And will not behold the majesty of the Lord.

Luke 2: 40

And the Child grew and became strong in spirit, filled with wisdom; and the grace of God was upon Him.

None of these however explain what it is. This leads me to believe that it is a combination of things that enable us to be good Christians. Compassion, love, forgiveness, obedience. These things are the closest we can get to knowing the grace of God, and when He chooses to visit these things upon us, it is a truly unique and wonderful feeling.

 

What is Gods grace?

Is forgiveness synonymous with letting people back in (as far as the Bible goes)?

Matthew 5: 43-45

You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Following on from my forgiveness post, I wanted to explore something that came up in the comments. From a Biblical standpoint, does forgiveness go hand in hand with letting the forgiven back into your life?

From the above verse (one of my favorites) it doesn’t seem to mention anything about letting the forgiven back in. I decided to have a look at some other verses that dealt with forgiveness

Mark 11:25

And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.

Matthew 18: 21-35

Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?”

 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.  Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents.  But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that payment be made.  The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, ‘Master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’  Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt.

 “But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, ‘Pay me what you owe!’  So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he should pay the debt. So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done.  Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me.  Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’  And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him.

 “So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.”

Mark 11:25 seems to deal with forgiveness without mentioning having to let the person back into your life, but Matthew 18:21-35 seems less clear cut, in my eyes.

Despite the servants debts, the Master not only forgave him, but released him and cancelled the debt, allowing him to serve again. Whilst this seems a clear cut case of forgiveness being synonymous with acceptance, it makes no mention of it at the end and continues to simply say that you must forgive the trespasses of your enemies.

My opinion on it is this. Forgiveness is something that every Christian should practice if they expect God to forgive them in turn. Acceptance of the transgressor back into your life, however, is a matter of personal choice using the free will that God blessed us with

Is forgiveness synonymous with letting people back in (as far as the Bible goes)?

Sadness, and the ability of Gods word to remove sadness and uplift.

Most days I feel contented, when I can pray and glorify the Lord without the burden of a heavy heart. Some days I feel depressed, and I think that I am not good enough and my heart feels like it is made of lead.

It is on those leaden hearted days that I turn to my Bible for words of solace, words that will help me pray for the strength to get through to the next contented day and to keep the devil at bay. It does not disappoint:

Psalms 34:18

The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.

Psalms 55:22

Cast your burden on the Lord,
And He shall sustain you;
He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.

1 Peter 5: 6-7

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,  casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

At the end of the day, these days of sadness are a test of faith, a test to see if you trust God enough to make things better, to help you through it and to make you a more blessed person as a result. As it is written:

Psalm 18:2

The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer;
My God, my strength, in whom I will trust;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold

and He will always be, through the bleakest of days as well as the most blessed of them.

Sadness, and the ability of Gods word to remove sadness and uplift.

God is right

Psalm 33: 4-5

For the word of the Lord is right, And all His work is done in truth. He loves righteousness and justice; The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.

This is going to be a short one, as I have had an exhausting day, and I need to catch up on some sleep, but I wanted to share this with you, as it is just what I needed to hear.

Sometimes it can be easy to focus far too much on the negative and ignore the positive in any situation. It is through this incorrect focus, in my experience, that doubts start to creep in and the devil gets his claws into you.

And yet, if we just remember the good things, and remember that God is righteous and truthful and that he loves to see those qualities in us, we can beat the devil and show him, and other doubters, the strength, the love and the wisdom of God and the fact that he will forgive anyone who lets Him into their hearts, no matter how grim their past life has been.

After all, He welcomed me back with open arms and forgiveness 🙂

Have a blessed day folks, and remember, the word of the Lord is right!

 

 

God is right

Determination.

I had wanted to post some thoughts on my latest devotional page, but something came up that I wanted to discuss more.

I was looking through Facebook for some religious groups to join when I stumbled across a post about Pentacostalism in South Korea. One comment among the many stood out to me:

Determination2
Red = Original Poster, Black = Other Poster, Green = Me

Firstly, I have blanked the name of the OP out because I do not believe in their privacy being possibly infringed upon, and secondly, I believe my comments to be words of encouragement and support, not of hostility and control.

That being said, I know where this person is coming from. When I was an active supporter of Communism (including it’s anti religious sentiments) I made many comments like that (and probably a good few worse than that) and felt that they were right and should be aired.

However, I have felt His presence and it was like nothing I had ever experienced before. It was powerful and moving and truly awe inspiring.

Matthew 1:21

And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.

This verse reinforces my belief that, if God can reach out, touch me and make a believer out of me when I, at my darkest hour, was denouncing Him and attacking not just Him, but his followers too, he can touch the heart of this person in the same way. We are all His people, and the choices we make (using the free will that God gave us) doesn’t change that in the slightest. Whether we renounce Him or embrace Him, He is always with us.

Psalms 90:2

Before the mountains were brought forth,
Or ever You had formed the earth and the world,
Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.

To end, comments like the one above do not discourage me. In fact, they do quite the opposite. They make me more determined to show my faith, and to reach out and try to show people who’s faith in God has gone that he is still there for you if you reach out to Him and let Him in. If I could bottle the feelings that I felt when I rediscovered Him, I would share it with everyone I could find but, because I cannot, I hope my words can do the same.

Have a blessed day.

Determination.