Monday, September 25, 2023

What Life is and Isn't

What Life is and Isn't 
by David Brenneman 

Life isn't what you can get out of it...although the world would have you think otherwise.

Life, until either we go home to be with Jesus -if we're saved- is to be lived in appreciation for all He's done for us.  Life's meant to be more abundant for those who are now Children of God.  "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." John 10:10.

Those outside of the family of God cannot understand the things of God.  "But a natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned." 1 Corinthians 2:14.

We are both easily deceived and live in a very deceived world. Without a doubt the Spirit is very busy in the area of teaching followers of Christ Jesus in how to live life.

But are you seeking to know, seeking to understand the things of God?  Where do your passions lie?  What gets you excited?  Honestly, if it's anything of this world more than something you have been learning from God, through His Spirit, then you really need to take a step back.   

For me, recognizing stumbling blocks, as the Bible calls them, has been a very important part of living for Jesus.  Removing things that were consuming my time that could have been time better spent.  There are things that I used to do that I just don't anymore because of the work of the Spirit in me.  

When we grow up in the physical world we soon realize the necessity of "taking life seriously", that is, to start considering a vocation, a place to live, paying taxes, caring for a home, a car etc.  In growing in Christ, we need to realize the need to grow up too.

"When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things." 1 Corinthians 13:11.

The children of Israel in Deuteronomy were given the 10 Commandments.  Jesus was asked what were the greatest Commandments.  As more than a few have stated, the two that Jesus said were a summation of all 10. So no, there's no portion we can invalidate.  Jesus said we're to love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul, and spirit and to love your neighbor as yourself.  

What do you fill your mind with?  Statistics on things of this world or on the wisdom of the Word of God?  I honestly find it an uphill battle to memorize Scripture. Worldly information isn't nearly so difficult to memorize.  It's been 40 years and I can still tell anyone how to setup a MS-DOS computer.  Step by step.  Science fiction books.  Have way too many memorized from my younger days.  In layman's terms, your brain can be a horrific episode of Hoarders.  So much junk stuffed in it that you can't discern right from wrong, truth from error.

My practice of recent months is to push myself to be in my Bible more.  To pray more.  I still have struggles but I still press on.  In Christ I can do this.  As Jesus said apart from Me you can do nothing.  A vine can only work with what it's supplied.  We are supposed to be branches in the vine of Christ.  

What have you been allowing to take up your time?  The world is going to demand much of your time, but you can still push back to give your best to your Savior.  Colossians 3:23-25 "Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.  For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality."

Beware of anyone or anything that lays claim to convince you that you deserve this or that in this world.  We deserve what Jesus went through on the cross.  He died and arose again in our place.  

Proverbs is for sure a book that needs read more and more.  A chapter a day in addition to whatever else you may read in your Bible.  In it we read of true wisdom and knowledge of God.  

Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness.  Our priorities must begin with whatever is important to Jesus. 

All NASB 1995 and NASB Scripture Excerpts used by permission. Lockman Foundation.

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