Monday, May 30, 2022

When We Go Our Own Way

When We Go Our Own Way 
by David Brenneman 

We are indeed free in Christ Jesus with the ability to choose to obey or not.  That freedom came from the cross of Calvary. 

Discernment is for sure something to pray for in your life. Understanding is to be prayed for along with it. 

We often think the wrong things when life isn't going to 'plan'. Some who are Christians actually call such things as bad luck. Some even call it karma.  The truth is better to be said and considered rather than coating the facts to appease our conscience. 

Spiritual warfare does exist and if you are a Follower of Christ Jesus you can be in the throws of it. 

Simply choosing to disobey will certainly bring its own brand of trouble. 

There are times when we are indeed being instructed by the Spirit to let go of things, people or places in our lives and we don't.  

The faith that Jesus was wondering if He would find upon returning is upon us to have in use.  The Scriptures say that to each a measure of faith has been given. 
Romans 12:3 NASB "For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith."

But when we don't use it our hearts get hardened.  We don't see it right away but it slowly happens in a Believer's life when obedience isn't the norm.

We can do many things that keep our minds off of being sensitive to the Spirit of God.  We can "turn up the volume" in our lives to drown Him out. 

We can be so busy living for self, selfish ambition, self growth, self this or self that. We can redirect our passion towards what amounts to idolatry.  Which in reality is indeed serving other gods even if our minds refuse to refer to them as such. 

Where do your passions lay?  Where does your mind repeatedly wander to?  Does it wander or is it steadfast on obeying God?

When we go our own way we likely are not going where God wanted us.  

My mind battles often between knowing the necessary things of life and the futility of a life lived for me. I can indeed push for a higher education, for certain possessions. But why?  I am reminded of the imminent return of Jesus.  Is what my desires are focusing on going to bring about what God wants or what I want?  

No where in the Bible does it say that a retirement is part of the life of a Follower of Christ Jesus.  At least four "pillars of the faith" in my life strive or had striven to live out their faith every single day.  One who was called home by God was still writing papers the day before he passed.  The other 3 are always living life as if today could be the day of Jesus Christ returning.  They want to be found by Him doing what they were called to do. 

Every Believer has the responsibility to live as if today were the day of His return. 

We are to be working the deeds of righteousness. We are to be living for Jesus. Many don't see the depth of the truth to denying self, taking up their own cross, and following Jesus. 

Just look at the Old Testament. When the children of Israel obeyed life was better than they could have dreamed of. When they got complacent life became increasingly difficult. When they got to where they gradually left serving God out of their lives life became oppressive. 

We were given choice at the cross of Jesus Christ.  At the same time we were also beginning our lives in Christ that we will give an account of before Jesus. 

When your life is reviewed, when your works done in the body are burned away, will anything be left to show you were a follower of Christ Jesus?  

We indeed may be living the life right now. 
We may have cars, houses etc. But do we live for self or for Jesus?  We were challenged a few months ago to look at the approximate 42 hours left in our week.  To see where our time went.  What does yours look like?  Is it in service to you or to God?

Is what you do including Jesus in your life?

Matthew 6:1-8 NASB "“Take care not to practice your righteousness in the sight of people, to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.
So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, so that they will be praised by people. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. But when you give to the poor, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your charitable giving will be in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

And when you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they will be seen by people. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full. 6 But as for you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.

And when you are praying, do not use thoughtless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard because of their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him."

We can easily pursue self and get our reward here rather than on that day and have nothing to give back to Jesus for all He’s done for us.

Colossians 3:1-11 NASB "Therefore, if you have been raised with Christ, keep seeking the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.
Therefore, treat the parts of your earthly body as dead to sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry. For it is because of these things that the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, and in them you also once walked, when you were living in them. But now you also, rid yourselves of all of them: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and obscene speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you stripped off the old self with its evil practices, and have put on the new self, which is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created it—a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave, and free, but Christ is all, and in all."

Be sure of your motivation in life. Be sure of what had your attention needs your attention. Be sure you aren't where you aren't growing in your sanctification.
It isn't about warming a seat in a church building. It's serving and growing in Christ Jesus in accordance with His Will and Word. 

No matter your age, if indeed you are in Christ Jesus, you are part of His body and have a role and responsibility.

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