No More Sorrow

I know it is Good Friday, but burning within my heart are words from the Holy Spirit in the book of Hebrews 10:1-2,

“For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never, by the same sacrifices which they offer continually year by year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no long have had consciousness of sins?”

Then Hebrews 10:10,

“By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”

Also, Hebrews 10:18,

“Now where there is forgiveness of these things, there is no longer any offering for sin.”

These passages clearly tell us that the blood of Jesus Christ totally cleanses us of all sin. Since that is true, for all people and for all time, we are not to have a “consciousness of sin.” In other words, we should not be rehearsing, feeling sorry, and a host of other “mourning” attitudes about our past.

Instead, in the newness of life Christ brings, we are to move forward in the life and power shared in Him and with Him, always flowing in the obedience empowerment He brings to us.

A constant attitude of “mourning for our sins” will keep us sin-anchored and sin responding. However, when we step into the faith given to us in our salvation through Christ, (Romans 12:3) we are empowered to leave the old and return to the new.

Do we ever forget the price paid, NO, NO – a thousand times NO! But a life lived in the joy of total release from the sin empowers us to live in the realm of the Holy Spirit. That is what that horrible day gave us in Jesus!

Galatians 5:16 “But I say, walk in the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.”

The instruction is clear. Leave sin behind and walk in our Lord Jesus Christ with heads up – empowered by His grace, mercy, and truth!

I am overwhelmingly thankful for all our Lord has done on my behalf and I am putting my nose in His book to see how I can fully embrace all He has accomplished for me. Then, I choose to be released from the sorrow of the mistakes, sin, and shortcomings we all have, and I run with endurance the race set before me. Join me!

Life Has Come!

All passages from New American Standard Bible Updated, Lockman Foundation.

Adjusting Perspective

“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, …But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches in His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”
Ephesians 2:1, 4-7 NASB

“Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth.”
Colossians 3:1-2 NASB

The perspective of our thoughts and prayers will determine what we “see.” If we are looking from this earth’s perspective up then they will be earth-bound in nature and have much frustration in what we see as answered or not.

If, however, they are prayers and thoughts from the perspective of being seated in Him on the Throne, then they will have heaven’s perspective and are fruit bearing thoughts and words of life. I am struck in my heart with this truth. Oh, our Father is so gracious that He always hears us and always moves with us, but to finally “see” that my perspective makes a huge difference in how I approach my day-to-day thinking, prayers and activities is a burst of hope and power.

We must begin. We must begin to switch our point of view and open to heaven’s input. Otherwise, we are just repeating the obvious. At this point in my life, time is precious and I do not want to just be repeating what I have heard nor do I want only the thoughts of other people in my head. I want the life-giving breath of heaven’s view nurturing my soul.

Scripture is very important here. His own words are always honored and always engender and build faith in the unseen. We begin to “see” in our spirits and our minds the ways of heaven delivered in life through the pages of His book. This is a new world and one where I know little. So as we place ourselves where we have been told by Scripture itself to place ourselves – in Christ seated on the eternal Throne of Glory – thinking His thoughts and “seeing” His world – let us think and pray in ways that release all He is in our world.

This takes some time to adjust to in our minds, thoughts, and prayers. (It is in the category of “taking our thought’s captive.”) But begin with me and let’s watch our hearts rise in expectation as we talk with Him (I think that is what we mean by prayer anyway) about what He sees and knows. What a joy to relax in His love and acceptance here – above it all. It is not a matter of “work,” but a matter of focus and intent. Let’s believe the Word and put it into life as we love Him.

The Mystery

“Even the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to His saints; to whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory;” Colossians 1:26-27 KJV(ER)

I am constantly amazed and delighted with this passage of Scripture. The word “mystery” is simply a secret that has been hidden, but now is made available to all who call on the name of Jesus. This passage is endless in discovery as we read the Word. Almost every time I study it, read it, or just look at it, I begin to understand things I have not known previously. As the understanding grows, so does my excitement. As those who dwell in His heart as He dwells in ours so much becomes available to us in this new way of living. It is excitement over and over again in my spirit and in my heart.

This mystery of “Christ in you” is more than a statement, much more. It is the key to understanding everything in the New Creation Covenant (2 Corinthians 5:17). This Lord of ours has chosen to reside inside of each of us through the Holy Spirit. We have been made a son or daughter of our Father and have been created completely new from the inside out. The opportunities and consequences of that fact are eternal. Now everything is changed – my breath is His, His mind is mine, my heart is His, His heart is mine. Together we live and move and have our being.

We have known all along that we were not alone. But for years, many of us have worshipped a God outside of ourselves, not really related to us, and our requirement was to obey. I did not know the reality and the fullness of the fact that when He came inside, then the fulfilled law in Him was also in me as well as the motivation and the strength to be obedient. Beyond that, now the knowledge and strength to do the works of Christ Himself is in this body we call home.

The fulfilled law – that is what happened through Jesus’ life, death, burial, resurrection, and ascension to the Throne of Glory. He fulfilled it and He became it. When He came inside of us at our invitation, then that fulfilled law came as well. So as one of my college teachers said, “The Law did not change, but our position to it did change.” Now we do not try to “keep” it, because it is already kept for us and in us. However, we do confirm or establish it. Romans 3:31 “Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid; yea, we establish the law.” Our lives in grace and love confirm that God was right all along and the law is established as truth in and through us.

Trying to “keep” what is already kept, will lead us into legalism that can never be successful in our walk. We always fail that way. Some even refuse to understand their freedom and disregard the New Creation Covenant because of their stanch legal understanding of trying to keep what is already done. This mystery of Jesus inside us is the revealer of such false doctrine.

Holiness is not attained, it is a gift of grace through the presence of Jesus Christ. I think that understanding will find its way into another post shortly.

Thank you for reading and be very blessed in Him!

Made Competent

Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 9.44.48 AM“Such confidence we have through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant — not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.”

2 Corinthians 3:4-6 NIV

Becoming competent in the Bible is not the same as “competence” in the Spirit. A few years ago I would have balked greatly at such a statement. But as the Lord has seen fit to allow me to live these years, I have discovered a wealth of “heart-knowledge” that previously was missed in my study of the Word.

I love the Word – all of it; from Genesis 1:1 to Revelation 22:21. I have spent my life in the pursuit of the knowledge contained within these sacred pages. I have discovered fact upon fact that was not seen when I was younger. However, what our Lord is opening in me and through me now is not more “facts,” in the normal sense of the term, but His own heartbeat of love, care, empowerment, direction, mind, and life. It far surpasses what I had seen and understood previously. I am so deeply excited that I hardly know which passage to teach first. They are all brimming full of life and its fullness in my Lord.

The passage above is overflowing in heart knowledge. Paul was explaining to the people in the Corinthian body of believers that the confidence he lived in was not the confidence of arrogance, nor of self-accomplishment. It was instead the confidence in His Lord – or we could say, his trust that His Lord was accomplishing His will through Paul’s life. This confidence produced a trust in who Jesus had proven to be and then a willingness to live in that reality.

Paul had been trained by the best. His education was far beyond most of the Jewish nation and certainly far beyond the other apostles. Yet, that was not what qualified Him to be Apostle to the Corinthian believers. It was instead the teaching of Holy Spirit filled understanding of living a life in Christ – instead of by a law book. Teaching the Scriptures through an understanding of law creates creatures of brittleness and ugliness of heart. They are not capable of Spirit knowledge nor flight of life in His heart. They will know only what is written – not what is breathed.

No amount of “facts” can give that “breath” to an individual. We are always lacking. However, in Him, there is no lack and He empowers beyond our knowing. It is not the knowledge of men that he needs us to share, but the knowledge of His heart. We can say that the Word and all of its facts are exactly that. That is true – but only in the understanding of the Spirit. Otherwise, we are caught up on our own questions and their lack of answers.

So as we read, study, and dig out meanings and understandings, let’s remember to listen and to remain open to the heartbeat and breath that will come if we lean. It what He knows that we and the whole world are waiting to hear.

A Moment by Moment Reality

FullSizeRender.jpg“One thing I have desired of the LORD, That will I seek; That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in His temple.” Psalm 27:4 NKJV

After I had read my daily portion of Scripture this morning, I read ahead a bit in the Psalms and came to this passage. I have stayed there for most of the morning! It is awesome for a New Creation Covenant Son of Almighty God to read such things. First of all, we are told in 1 Corinthians 3 & 6 that we are the temple of the Holy Spirit. So I am that house. You are that house – if you know Jesus. That means we are always there – so this passage is the moment by moment reality for the believer. He lives in me. I am the house of prayer Jesus was talking about when He threw the money changers out in the gospel of Matthew & John.

I had never really thought about all that when I read this Psalm. WOW! This is what we are, individually, as believers. So moment by moment I can behold the beauty of the LORD! In my enjoyment in Him with that phrase, I came into a radical knowledge – we individually are His beauty. We shine as His light and we are His witnesses in the earth, by our being Him.

Such inclusion, such provision, such holy, righteous being who makes me as He is in this world – 1 John 4:17. His emphasis is not our failings, all of us have plenty of those, but His emphasis and the emphasis of Scripture within the New Covenant is His sufficiency. When we begin to really take His provisions and sufficiency into our moment by moment reality, then we have no need to sin. Instead the passage comes true, “Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” Galatians 5:16. It is an amazing walk in His love and goodness.

May it be our reality today beloved reader – our moment by moment reality of His love and inclusion. Thank you Jesus!

 

Notice Above

If you will notice in the menu area above this post, there is this: Do Yourself A Favor, Forgive! I have written a small booklet about the power we have in Jesus to forgive. If you would like to read it, there is a link. If you click it, the PDF will open in your screen.

I am hoping to work with a download ability. But for now – at least it is up.

Enjoying A December Day in NY

Really, really cold day in Central NY. While all the southern loving people are hating this weather, I am enjoying it very much. My feet do get cold, so I always need to have them encased in something warm, and as I grow older I have a shorter time of enjoyment. For instance, in Mid-March, I do not find pleasure in a huge snow-storm – most of the time.

However, as I ponder all the negative press our weather is getting, I am in my warm home rejoicing. There are no insects to avoid (I am quite allergic to most of them – bees in particular can cause extreme difficulty with me). There is no lawn to mow and no painting outside that can be done. So I have more time to write and study.

I do not need to make certain I can get cool. That is one of the biggest problems I have physically with very warm weather – I cannot stay warm or I will be in trouble. It seems that my physical system does not easily cool itself. So it is easy for me to overheat and rather dangerous due to sun-stroke. So during these beautiful months – none of these things need to be on my radar.

Thankfully, my family understands and puts up with my joy in the beauty of a snow covered lawn and the cold, cold nights. If I were younger, (and when I was younger), I would enjoy cross country skiing or snowshoeing over the beautiful fluff. However, I do not try that now. Getting from house to car and into buildings is about as far as I go in enjoying it.

As I sit and ponder the beauty and the quiet I find great enjoyment in it all. Oh yes, the quiet. We actually live on a very busy street in the city, and in the summer we have all the city sounds. Due to the snows’ insulating properties, in the winter it is as if we live in the country – so very, very quiet. I can think and pray and enjoy the stillness – or should I say, the seeming stillness.

So I guess it does take “all types” to make a world. I have enjoyed ministry trips to Florida during the winter, but would find the climate oppressive long-term. It is much too hot for my thick blood in the summer.

So, to all you who love the warm weather – that’s OK. I will continue to bless you. However, I will enjoy the journey of staying warm. It is easier than trying to get cool.

Enjoy the beauty and oh yes, “I love NY.”