Tuesday, July 16, 2019

No Spy Life...

God is not pleased if you praise Him at church but not at your workplace. It is not acceptable for you to revere God when you are with other Christians but not in your school or neighborhood. He expects you to honor Him completely, with your words, with your actions, with your life. If you honor Him, He will honor you.
- Blackaby

Two lives...most could think of spy movies, TV shows or books when they consider those two words.  Yet all too often everyone today actually practices living two lives.  The one we show everyone else and the one we don't show. Likewise there are those who show one kind of person on Sunday's and a different one the rest of the week.  I have even seen employee's have 2 different ones at work at practically the same time.  They speak of God and their walk with God yet in practice they follow company culture in direct opposition to God.
I am no stranger to this myself. We often find ourselves playing a role in order to avoid a discomforting situation.  It's not that we are outright lying, but a controlled silence at the wrong time can still be a lie.
We don't speak when we ought to or speak when we shouldn't.

It's been an interesting time reading Psalms and King David at the same time as the book of Acts with the life of Paul.

How was it possible for David to be a man after God's own heart?  How was it possible for Paul to be the way He was in public, and in private?

We are inundated with sensory overload practically all the time.   Most need noise to 'think'.  Yet Jesus quite often took the Disciples away to were there was only 2 things.  Him and peaceful silence.

Paul and David were always on the move.  In the earlier writings of Psalms it was about Saul chasing David.  In Acts, there was little rest for Paul because Satan kept stirring up people practically every day.

We are in lives that aren't so different.

Yet we are called to be Christ-like.  Called to be the same throughout the week as we are on Sunday.  Called to live for Christ in our taking up of our Cross daily.

It's not about all the sites we can see. It's not about all the people we can impress.  It's not about our image to show others about us. It's not about what sports we HAVE to follow. 

If we are not honoring God in our lives 24/7, WE HAVE A PROBLEM!

For those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me shall be lightly esteemed. 1 Samuel 2:30

We read of Eli honoring his disobedient sons but not God.  The Jewish people knew all about his sons and he knew it. Yet he was more afraid of messing things up with his sons more than he did with God.

Others in the Bible put impressing people above doing what was right in God's eyes.  Solomon was told what not to do, yet he did it and paid the price.  Civil War came after his death.  The wisest man of his time yet he listened to others in his later years instead of what God told him.

I grow older and simplicity seems to be what I cling to.  Less stuff n more of what God wants to teach me.  I have been asked about where is my sports teams. Where's my shirt to show their colors.  I have none.  All given away.  Why? Because to me they became an idol.
They were provoking within me thoughts and actions that were not Christ-like.
I don't do a lot of things because of that very same reason. 

People today don't stop to consider what God had a problem with 2,000 years ago, He still has a problem with today. 

Think about that. 

God has not changed His mind about a single commandment.  Has not about a single judgment.  Has not about a single ruling.  Not. Ever.

What God said was idolatry still is what He said idolatry is. What He said about honoring Him once, still applies to today's world.

There is no living two lives other than what Paul described in Romans.  The Sin nature and the process of sanctification  happening in the life of the believer. 

The war between the two natures within us.  Either we are living for Jesus or we are not. In everything.  In all things. 
Yes, in Christ, the Father does see Jesus instead of us, but we know that's because we see that God sees the whole picture of us. In our mortal lives we are His work in progress. 

We often see the verse in a painting of Joshua's famous challenge.  Choose this day whom you will serve. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

Think about that.  I often see these fantastic portraits with that very passage in garage sales.  What happened in their lives that made that portrait be up for sale?

Now there's the thought. What happened in your life (and mine) that made that challenge he made up for sale?

Where did the compromise slip in?
Where did the change in attitude and thought come from that made declaring that to the world expendable?

More often than you realize it is a tiny compromise here, a little one over there.

How do you change the direction of a mighty river?  One tiny stone at a time adds up to a major course correction.

Honor God in all you do.  If you have given in to compromise, take a stand and go back to what you once declared before God.  David did.  Read Psalms.  His anguish at realizing his faults and failures hit him hard.

Be sensitive to the things of God.  He died to save you, to give you a new life in Christ.  Why would you want to continue to live in the old sinful way?  The Prodigal Son was in the muck and mire of a pigsty feeding pigs.  One of the lowest forms of life to a Jew. Right next to being a tax collector or lawyer.  He realized his need to really live and returned to his Father to repent and expected nothing, just hoping to be treated like one of his Father's hired hands. To step out of his sinful living and into something better.  To not to continue living in what he knew was wrong.

His Father's forgiveness went beyond anything that Son could ever have hoped for or expected.  He was shown that his true life was yet to be lived, under the forgiveness of his Father. 

No two lives. One life.

 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. Galatians 2:20

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