Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Encouragement for YOU Today

Life on the planet has experienced a tremendous change in the past 20 years.  Maybe because I am aging, I don't know, but I seem to be particularly sensitive to it, and so, maybe, are you.  For this reason, I feel compelled to share these words of encouragement with you because they SO encouraged me. today:

 He (Christ) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities--all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. 19 For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. 21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, 23 if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.   Colossians 1:15-23

For I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, 2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, 3in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. 5 For though I am absent in body, yet I am with you in spirit, rejoicing to see your good order and the firmness of your faith in Christ. 6Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving. 8 See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. 9 For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, 10 and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authorityColossians 2:1-10

Why do these verses encourage me? 

First, everything that exists was made by Jesus Christ for his purposes.  He existed before anything else.  He HOLDS everything together.  He is IN CHARGE.  In spite of everything seeming as though it is spinning out of control.  He has not a whisper of sweat on His brow or above His lips.  He is as cool as a cucumber.  Just as He was during the immense storm on the ship, He could be taking a quick catnap if He wanted to be, but the Bible says that He neither slumbers nor sleeps (Psalm 121:4).  He is watching everything that is happening and NOTHING happens that He does not ALLOW to happen. 

At one time, I was far from God and there was a huge breach between us that I could not cross until Jesus came and died on the cross.  NOW, I am destined to inherit all the riches of heaven right alongside of Jesus, my hero; my savior, my God and my King.   Thanks to Jesus, I am holy and blameless and can approach Him with all my thoughts, my desires, my requests and He is worthy to receive ALL of my praise.

Second, Christ lives IN ME.  He holds ALL THE TREASURES OF WISDOM AND KNOWLEDGE, and I have direct, immediate access to Him.  I am being rooted and built up in Him, and so I have all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge dwelling inside of me.  So, if someone tries to persuade me with some other malarky (bull) that they have come up with, I have the ability to know that that is what it is...bull.

My prayer for you today, my friend is that God will give you a complete understanding of what He wants to do in your life and that He will make you wise with spiritual wisdom.  Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and you will continually do good, kind things for others.  All the while, you will learn to know God better and better. 

I also pray that you will be strengthened with His glorious power so that you will have all the patience and endurance that you need.  May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father, who has enabled you to share the inheritance that belongs to God's holy people, who live in the light. 

We have SO much for which to be thankful.  He has rescued us from the one who rules the kingdom of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of His dear Son.  God purchased our freedom with His blood and forgiven ALL our sins (if we have repented and asked Him to do so!!!).

Have you done so, my friend?  If not, oh please, can't you see how much you need Him?  I implore you; search yourself, determine the ways you have sinned and repent.  Ask Him to forgive you.  He will do it.  He wants you to belong to Him and be a co-inheritor with Him of all the glories and riches that heaven affords. 

Heavenly Father, I don't know if anyone will read this, but you do.  You know exactly who needs to read it, and I pray that Your will be done.  The Bible says your Word will not return void, and that is what I am sending forth today...your word.   Bring the one who needs encouragement here today, I pray, in Jesus' name.  Amen.

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