If our lives look like everyone else's, we haven't yet come to understand the Gospel. If the pattern of our days is indiscernible from the rest of mankind, we're not yet within the full power of the Inhabiting Jesus.
May you and I wrestle with the story that our days are telling.
Today, may we "deny ourselves, take up our cross and [simply, humbly, only, and with His life-in-our-lives leading the Way] follow Him."
Scattered thoughts on the nature of Belief in Jesus:
1. Our whole understanding of salvation is based upon Belief in the 2,000 year old work of a Jewish man murdered in an obscure Roman province.
2. For that reason, we must be very careful of diminishing the importance of daily Belief in more "everyday" matters of life, work, sickness, anxiety, decision-making etc - ie. if Belief is the difference between eternal life and death, it must deeply and practically matter, day by day, in matters of temporal life.
3. Every situation, interaction, scenario and circumstance of each day confronts us with a two-option choice: Will we - in this particular situation, interaction, scenario or circumstance - choose to Believe or not believe?
4. Regarding that last ever-present question, it's not just some nebulous "out there" belief. No matter what confronts us, we can pause and ask ourselves three simple questions:
a) Does He really know about this situation/need? (Here, we're required to believe in His perfect knowledge)
b) In this situation/need, do I believe He is good? (Now we're considering His heart)
c) Regarding my situation/need, can He actually do anything about it? (Now we're after His living power)
5. Final thought: It's actually easier to Believe than to waffle and wonder; to bring in our own human "thinking," as if our limited human intellect and situational grasp are really part of the equation.
My friends, He knows, He is good, He can always do something about anything in our life. Today, will you trust His good and glorious plan for your day? Will you believe that, in today, He is working out the Plan for the highest Kingdom-usefulness of your whole life?
Strive to trust. Endeavor to hope. Choose Jesus at every turn. His Way is highest, best and built with the moment-to-moment buildings blocks of our Belief.
In Union with Jesus, even our marriages can lead to knowing His nearness and, certainly, His goodness!
From 2 Kings 5 -
Naaman went with his horses and chariots and stopped at the door of Elisha’s house. Elisha sent a messenger to say to him, “Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed.”
But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage.
Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy.
Then Naaman and all his attendants went back to the man of God. He stood before him and said, “Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel..."
May the way we live our life today, may the way that we Believe today, act as evidence of the existence and preeminence of our God. Let us launch into this Monday, completely unaware of what the weeks holds, knowing our life might be the turning-point for another's life. There is no God in all the world except our God. And this is the day He's given us; let us rejoice in it!