Blog In Audio:
Once again, it was great to be at ALife Church yesterday. Pastor Jonathan challenged us all to remember what God said and did in 2020 before we seek to move forward in 2021. The glory before us will come if will focus on Him in the midst of our present sufferings. God is going to obliterate our doubts about who God is and who we are.
1 Corinthians 1:26 For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. 27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; 28 and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are, 29 that no flesh should glory in His presence. 30 But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption— 31 that, as it is written, “He who glories, let him glory in the LORD.”
This is not a season to be strong in the flesh. It is a season to be renewed in the courage of the Lord. This is not a courage that comes by a knowledge of right that seeks to destroy those who are wrong. This could even include a deemed knowledge of being right and a deemed knowledge of others being wrong. Human wisdom produces human strength, but the wisdom of God gives us a strength of God’s Spirit from within. It is a strength that empowers a willingness to change in our own hearts. It is an ability to be strong in the courage of the Lord. This is a courage of the Spirit of God found within our own spirits by an intimate connection with God. It is a courage that empowers internal change in our own heart and a willingness to be uncompromising in our faithfulness to God in all things. God is not on our side for the sake of being on our side. Life is about God being on our side because we have willingly sought to be on His side. He is the Creator, the Commander, and the Author and Finisher of our faith. We must seek out His will in all things. This is the source of true courage, the courage of the Lord to become an expression of God as life to our world.
This is also a season to be renewed in our holiness to the Lord. This is not a religious piety, but an uncompromising inspiration to be empowered by God’s ways to walk in His paths in all things. It is an internal inspiration to live for God and an internal willingness to value what He values and to be changed in our ways to be as He is in all things. True holiness is to be like God in our character, nature, way, power, and authority. It is to be life-giving as He is life-giving. It is not peace where there is not peace. It is peace that comes when we boldly come to Him and become transformed by His presence in our lives because there is no gap between us and Him. It is not the testimony of Him coming into our lives. It is the testimony of Him in our lives because we have boldly run to His presence. We have laid our lives down to find that our true life is only found in Him. The fruit is that we are transformed into an expression of Him. His presence is not about us preserving our way of thinking it is about us being transformed in our thinking. If our ways match the ways of the world, we have not found the holiness of God. If our ways match the ways of the Pharisees, we have not found the holiness of the God. God is neither law nor lawless, He is life that transforms us to cast a shadow that looks like life.
1 John 5:18 We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him. 19 We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one. 20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. 21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
If our thinking is the same as those in the world, there is something wrong in our thinking. If our thinking is the same as the religious Pharisees, there is something wrong in our thinking. We must be renewed in our holiness to the Lord.
This is also a time to be renewed in our faith in God. This is not merely the faith that comes by hearing God that empowers our actions to be those of faith towards Him. This is a faith in God that clings to Him with trust in who He is in every situation of our lives. God is who He is and He invites us to partner with Him in all things. It is not about us getting what we want, it is about us being transformed in our hearts and minds to seek what He wants. Life is a family business. He is the Father, and we are His sons and daughters. We were lawless and we were law bound, but our Heavenly Father is in the business of LIFE! We need to acknowledge that it is His robe we wear, it is His ring upon our finger, it is His sandals that we are walking in, and it is His food that we eat. His faithfulness will reveal the true story in our lives. We can expect to see a deeper revelation of trust in Him in the days ahead. This is a year to be renewed in our faith in God.
Ted J. Hanson
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