Friday, November 19, 2021

But what does it MEAN

But what does it MEAN 

Blessed is the person who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the Law of the LORD, And on His Law he meditates day and night. Psalms 1:1-2 NASB 

Jesus spoke of taking up your own cross and following Him. But what does that mean? Does the Bible say anything more? Yes, all throughout the Scriptures. 

The lives of the Disciples were such examples of those who let ho of worldly desires and ambitions in favor of a life with Christ.  A life of taking up their own cross to follow Jesus. 

This passage written thousands of years earlier points to such a life.  

We read in 1 Thessalonians 4:3b about it being God's Will,  our sanctification. 
We read of Jesus specifically praying for sanctification in those reading of the Gospels later and those with Him in that moment. 

What is sanctification? What traits hallmark such living?

Where do your thoughts go during your day?

Sin is going to subtly alter the course of your life, through temptation, in order to bring about still greater deviation from Sanctification. 

The goal being to take your heart and mind off of a life lived for Jesus. 

While work is a necessity, what we do in our idle time is what does the most damage to our integrity and our walk with God. 

As others have pointed out, you can change the course of a mighty river by moving a few stones at its beginning. 

Sin and temptation want you to let go of your own cross for just a moment. 
They want you to let down your guard for just a second.  

I was on my way back to our soon to be old house. Just driving along like other trips before. During that trip, I heard all kinds of soft suggestions to pull off for just a moment, wait out the higher than normal winds at McDonald's. Sounds harmless enough.  Yeah right. Be as harmless to someone watching what they eat like a diabetic in a chocolate factory.  Easy to see where temptation can go.

Temptation can be generational, Parents, Grandparents, Uncles, Aunts, even Mentors. 

We can and will talk ourselves into activities and thoughts to draw us away from the righteous life that God desires in us.

Will you or would you even recognize it if you saw it?  

By now in my life, I ought to have a very healthy ability to recognize poison ivy. I am highly allergic to it. Spreads easily on my skin and creams and pills don't do anything to slow it down.  I have to get a shot to fight it from the inside. 

To work on sin, on temptation, to seek out what Jesus prayed for you for, requires fighting it from the inside.  It requires you to have the same attitude as those pillars in Christ Jesus. It requires you to be intentional in your life. It requires you to be in the Word of God, requires you to internalize it. Temptation works on your heart and mind. The Word of God works on your heart and mind and soul.  The battlefield is in you. It's not in the physical world. 

It is obviously of utmost importance to Jesus to pray for it concerning all.

Sanctification is:
  1. the action of making or declaring something holy.
    "the sanctification of bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ"
    • the action or process of being freed from sin or purified.
      "the process of sanctification takes deliberate action on our part"
    • the action of causing something to be or seem morally right or acceptable.
      "the sanctification of violence

What steps are you taking to live a life approved of by God?

How do you spend your time?  Do you actively pursue a life that is pleasing to Jesus or do you live with your own personal interests in mind?  

We read n see what it means to be a Christian, a Christ follower.  But are you really? 

Are you at all trying to please the One who laid down His life to save you?

When your life is revealed for what it really was, not for what you thought it was, what will really be seen?  

I have all too often laid down my cross rather than taken it up and held onto it. 

We are tempted the most in areas of pleasure or pleasing others. Yet the One we ought to consider pleasing we disregard. We read in Ezekiel about how the Lord Jesus showed Ezekiel what people THOUGHT that God didn't see or couldn't know. 

Just because this or that feels good doesn't mean it's beneficial to our Spiritual growth. 
A box of Twinkies, a 12 pack of Pepsi and a large bag of Doreto's used to sound great to me for a movie. Let alone a very large bowl of popcorn.  A diet of that is what lead to my being overweight. Felt great, tasted great. Certainly didn't do anything to help my physical condition. 

You may think you don't know what a sanctified life looks like. 
You may not even think about your life in terms of what God thinks about it. 

You should. Because if you believed the Scriptures when it showed you how to be saved, then you ought to believe the other parts that show you how to live a Godly life. 

Do you realize that Jesus can easily separate your thoughts from your intentions?

He can and does all the time. 

He sees our wasted time, our wasted money spent that we justify in our minds. 

We live in a world that abuses God's grace and mercy.  Paul wrote of practiced sin in Romans. 

When you examine your life what things do you do that are what God says are intentional sins?  I have them, we all have them. 

Thank God that I am a work in progress with Jesus.  Writing this blog has brought to mind things that I have never considered or thought of before.  I am always being given God's thoughts on life, but it's up to me as to whether or not I obey.  Same goes for you. 

You must acknowledge God's truth regarding sin in your life. God's easily demonstrated that He's the type to call a spade a spade. He sugar coats nothing because eternity is in the balance. Lives are at stake. Finding those who will join Him in Heaven are that much more important than our personal achievements and satisfaction. He left perfection to be born as a baby. To live a sinless life in a sin filled world. To die for the sins of the countless multitudes of people that make up humanity in all history.  Sin's destruction.

We need to yes enjoy life,  but life as shown in serving God. A life spent growing in respect to salvation. A life that looks at the example of Jesus for the model. 

Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you. 

Jesus was wondering if He would find the faith when He returns. 

Do you exemplify a life as having the faith? 

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