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Friday, June 17, 2011

A toddler in Christ...

I believe that God has revealed to me that in the last 7 yrs, I've grown from an infant in Christ to a toddler in Christ.  The majority of that growth being in the last year and a half as I've applied myself to study the word of God and know personally for myself what He has to say . I feel condemned that it took me 7 yrs to do what I could have done in 6 mo, but I also know that feeling is NOT from Him, and that He's pleased with my passion for Him and my desire for more.

When I accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior, and asked for His Holy Spirit to teach me, guide me, and help me, I thought that meant for Him to help me live my life how I wanted.  A few years ago I started getting the revelation that God cares about EVERYTHING that concerns us, and that He didn't create us so that we could live life sprinkled with things from Him, but we are to be consumed with things of Him.  About a year ago, I realized that God has a specific plan and purpose for my life and that if I want to walk in His blessings then I need to be in His will and follow Him in all things towards life.  He still blesses the disobedient and the enemies of His kingdom because He loves them even though they don't return that desire, the old me is proof of that one.  It's that love that I've struggled the most with though.  I won't bother expanding on that, but God has answered the cry of my heart in increasing measure to understand that.  I still live in rebellion to God's Spirit in some things, and in others I've bowed my knee.  I ask God to continue to work in my heart b/c I want to allow Him to be Lord of everything that concerns me.  He has a opinion on what we wear, eat, think, say, and do.  His desire is to bring us into more blessings not to keep us from enjoying life.  It's a outright lie, from the father of lies, that God's desire is to take away the things of the world we enjoy so that we can follow the narrow path towards His heart to bless Him.  If the Christians you know are miserable trying to follow God's ways, then they don't know the Lord, nor have the joy of the Lord as their strength.  

It is a narrow path to inherit the kingdom of God and bring heaven to Earth, that is not a lie.  The blessings that are poured out on those that choose to pursue something higher than what this life has to offer are far beyond what mere words can describe.  It can only be known by those that walk and fight the good fight of faith.  We all have our own individual walks to the kingdom of God, and He meets each of us where we are at, and guides us in His way if we seek Him.  He will never force His will upon us because He gave us free will to choose life or death, blessings or curses.  We suffer the consequences of those decisions both now and eternally, some more in the former and others in the latter.  Our hearts are what's most important to the Lord, not what we do, what church we go to, how many people we've led to the Lord, who we've blessed, how much time we devote to searching Him out, etc...  All those things are fruits of what God is doing in our hearts, and if we follow Him, we will have the fruit to show for it.  As many of Pastors have said, a fruit tree does not strive to bear fruit, it just does b/c that is what it is.  As Christians, Christ-followers, we don't have to strive to be good/just/moral/whatever, we just need to be willing to follow the Spirit of God as He leads us into more of Him.  Christianity is NOT works based, NO ONE will stand at the gates of heaven with a list of why they should be able to enter!!!  It is by the grace of God that we are to inherit the kingdom of God, all we have to do is cooperate with Him in what He's doing in us. 

Life is busy, we are constantly drawn in different directions and fitting in the Lord is close to impossible.  I don't think very many people would argue with that.  What I will say though is that we are not to fit the Lord in to our schedules, that is why it doesn't work, besides a Sunday service weekly and a couple prayers lifted up during the week.  We are to live for Him, and then we will have ample time to spend with Him.  With all the different methods, apps, DVD's, CD's, the list goes on and on I'm sure, we can spend as much time with Him as we want to.  The question apparently is, do we want to spend time with Him?  And if the answer is "No.", then that's okay too.  If you want that to change, ask God to change your heart towards His kingdom, tell Him that you want a relationship with Him, to send His Holy Spirit to lead you into all truth, to give you wisdom, discernment, and understanding.  He will not leave you hanging, even if He doesn't answer that prayer how you think He should.

I'm grateful for what God is continuously doing in my heart and my thought life.  He corrects me multiple times a day, and I'm thankful for it b/c it shows that He does love me, and that even in the little things He's paying attention and is aware of what is going on in my heart.  Love Him!!!

1 Peter 2:2 "as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby" encourages us to begin our journey with  Jesus, as an infant, getting our nourishment from His word so that we may grow and mature.  This is where everyone who wants to know God's heart begins, regardless of physical age.  I began to feel a growing discontent with my spiritual walk and was asking God why and He brought to me two passages that explained why I was not growing in Him as I desired.

1 Corinthians 3:1-3 "1 And I, brethren, could not speak to you as to spiritual people but as to carnal, as to babes in Christ. 2 I fed you with milk and not with solid food; for until now you were not able to receive it, and even now you are still not able; 3 for you are still carnal. For where there are envy, strife, and divisions among you, are you not carnal and behaving like mere men?"

Hebrews 5:12-14 "12 For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. 14But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."

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