Tag Archives: joy

Tribulations And Victory

Something to think.

Tribulations And Victory

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

We don’t want tribulations. We want our lives to be peaceful, joyful, and blissful. If you only listen to uplifting, edifying, empowering sermons and speakers, you may acquire the misconception that Christianity is a utopia.

You might begin to think you are somehow excluded from the blessings of God. Because you do have problems and tribulations in your life.   Sometimes we may give the impression that Christianity is beyond tribulations. If we stay in the empowering side of the gospel, we may lead people to think that Christians who do Christianity correctly will be without conflict. Christianity is not a utopia.

If you’ve been a Christian for a little while you’ve come to the realization Christianity is not a utopia. We face tribulations and spiritual battles some we will win some we will loose. If you’re going to live the Christian life, your life will be and adventure but it will not be without conflict. Some of the battles will come from growing pains. Some from the struggle to get rid of the sin in our lives. Some will be spiritual battles which are intended to destroy you. What I am saying is the Christian life is not the end of problems.

If you look at the lives of men and women of God in both the old and new testament you will find they faced tribulations. In real life past and present the exclusion of trials and tribulations does not exist. Conflicts exist in life.

What makes Christianity different is we win. It may sound simplistic and irrational but we win. The resurrection of Christ is the guarantee of the victory!!!!!! This is what Jesus meant when he said, “I have overcome the world.” John 16:33.” He is saying my victory is not in the moment it is in eternity. It is not just winning the petty battles of life it is in winning eternally. It means despite the tribulations of this life we win. However, we end up in this life, as a martyr for Christ or as His ambassador we will ultimately win.

We who believe in Christ will spend eternity with him. In a reality much different from this one. In a reality of peace, joy, bliss, purpose and love. In other words we will live the life we want now minus the tribulations.  Our hope is not in incremental improvements but in joyous complete victory. Victory embedded in the resurrection of Christ. Since he it’s the first to be resurrected we also will be resurrected in due time. Resurrected to a life with him. That is what “I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 means. Total and complete victory for all who choose Jesus. An eternal secure victory that can never be overturned.

Listen, we are not going to simply sit on a cloud with a harp for eternity. We are going to accomplish things which have yet to be thought of. We are going to work for God according to His will and propose. Can you imagine what awesome things the creator of the universe has for you to do? Can you imagine the things you will see the things you will do? Can you imagine what a life of love,  propose, joy and work will be like in a world where sin does not exist. What will be accomplished there? This is the victory of Christ and more. More than we can imagine, think or expect. Tribulations come to an end but the victory in Christ is eternal.

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Remain

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Remain
 
I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. 24 Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you. 25 And being confident of this, I know that I shall remain and continue with you all for your progress and joy of faith. Philippians 1:23-25 
 
Recently I heard an evangelist ask, “Why are you here?” She was speaking to believers, in a small setting, not a large crowd. The simplicity of the question and in the setting, it which in made.  Made it particularly piercing. If, as we proclaim we are saved by faith. If all of the people in the room were saved what was our purpose? If salvation is the only goal God has for our lives, why are we still here? Why are we not remove from this life and instantly be transfigured into eternal life? It is not to attain the secular pleasures of the flesh. Paul states it very clearly, “having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.” Why would we want to remain on this earth once we have attained eternal life through Christ? Which will be so much better than this painful temporal existence? The answer is in his next statement, “Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you.” We remain for the very same reason as Paul. Because it is better for the rest of the world that we stay. We are the hands’, feet, mouth, and heart of Jesus. We exist to propagate the gospel of Christ to all around us. For those of us who believe in Christ as it says in John 3:16. Our purpose is not for our selves. It is for those who have not yet heard of Christ For those who have not accepted our Lord. We remain to serve our risen Lord by serving those that have not been saved. Your purpose is simple, be the hands and feet of Jesus. That is why we remain. The only reason we remain. 

One Thing

Something to think about.

One Thing

4 One thing have I asked of the Lord,
that will I seek after:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
and to inquire in his temple. Psalms 27:4
 
This is the perfect picture of contentment. Being in the presence of God. No fear, no want, perfectly secure fully provided for, in the presence of all mighty God.  To be in His presence would make us whole.

Good and Faithful Servant

Something to think about.
 
Good and Faithful Servant.
 
Matthew 25:21 (NKJV)
 
21 His lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord.’
 
If there was ever a goal to strive for it is this, to hear the Lord proclaim over your life “well done good and faithful servant.” A few years ago after my heart attack, my prayer was that God would allow me to serve Him. My reasoning for the prayer was this; God had saved my life. He restored me after a massive heart attack with life threatening complications. I felt and thought if he would allow me to become a lowly servant, I could show some appreciation for what he had done. I didn’t feel qualified to be any more than a servant. I prayed that prayer for a couple of years. Then I saw an opportunity and started to serve Him in a small group in my church. Shortly after that, I got involved with another group. Then another to the point now that I am now very involved in the church. As time passed and my involvement increased. I came to understand that the prayer I prayed though simple was not what I thought it was. I thought I was asking permission to assume a position of lowest rank. A position equal to my worthiness.
 
“The Lord said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.” Notice it does not say, ‘Well done, good and faithful priest, doctor, lawyer, king. It does not say teacher, preacher, singer, poet, professor, apostle. It does not say, deacon, general or any other title or position. It says, servant. What I have come to realize is that what I was asking for was/is the highest calling of God. I do not remember anywhere else in the Bible where God commends man for his actions. When he does acknowledge mans actions, he calls him a servant. I believe our highest value is not what we are recognized for or what we have earned. It is determined by our level of servant hood. To those who are faithful in the little things it says “I will make you ruler over many things.” God will make the servant a ruler over many things.
 
When I prayed to become a servant, I hoped that I could show God appreciation and gratefulness for what He had done. Now I know what I was praying for has opened the door to seeing, living and participating in the fulfillment of God’s will. When you become His servant your highest call. Your life will be changed, you will be fulfilled, you will experience God in ways you can’t imagine.
 

Joy

Something to think about.
 
Joy

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11
“Fullness of joy” To me this short phrase defines the height, depth, and breadth of the fullness of life. This verse promises me what my heart longs for peace, fulfillment, and love.  A life without lack, full of all of the good things of life. A lack of need, want or desire. It means that I will have abundance in every area of my life. And if that is not enough it then says,” at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” When you’re on the path of God, you will be safe, provided for loved and cared for. He will give you pleasures above and beyond that. Have you ever received a better offer?
When you are in the presence of God almighty He will give you the fullness joy. All you have to do is walk the path He has provided for you.  The path is not a secret. It is not anything that requires great education, superior, intelligence or a unique revelation. The path is the same for everyone.
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6 (ESV)
Jesus is the path. He is the way into the presence of God the Father. Jesus is the one that makes your joy full. It is He that provides all that you need. He is the secret in plain sight. He is the fullness of life. In the God Man, that is Jesus rests the the completion of man, and it is offered to you freely. You can have all the promises of God, but only through the path, that is Jesus. Celebrate the joy which is Jesus. Look around you will not find a better life.

One Day

Something to think about.
 
One Day
 
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. Psalm 84:10
 
Somewhere along the life of Christianity we’ve allowed the devil to upstage this reality. I have lived the life the devil has to offer I have received the best he has, I know the lies he has perpetrated against us. It is better to enter into the kingdom God and be as far away from his presence as possible and still receive his glory. Than to be in the center of the devil’s demise.  We’ve allowed the lies of the enemy to be sold as truth and accepted as desirable accomplishments. 
 
Our country our world is in the shape it is in because we have allowed the lies of the enemy to be sold as truths.  There isn’t anything the enemy has sold us that compares to being in the presence of God.  All the world’s accomplishments combined can not equate to being in the presence of God.  not even for an instant.
 
God’s presence is where you are fulfilled to overflowing. It is where you will find love, peace, joy, happiness. It is where you will be filled with the water of life, and you’ll never be thirsty again. Today, now these things are available to those who choose Christ. You can have a meaningful, purposeful and joyous life now. You can have the love, security and the companionship of God now, here today. You can have everything that makes life worth living. You can experience the presence of God.
 
Then when we are in His permanent presence when He dwells with man. There will be no more war, famine, hate, disease. No more lack, hurt, loss, exclusion, rejection, loneliness or empty promises. You will have security, peace, love, and acceptance. You will be washed and cleansed from the filth of sin.  You will be given a new perfect body. You will share in His glory.
 
We need to turn the tide of evil and let the world know, God has a better way, a better life. Instead of selling the world the lies of the devil we need to give them the truth of the joy of living the life of Christ. It is better to live life in the love of Christ than to live the life of lust and lost without Christ. We have a much better life to live here and now and into eternity, Far better than anything the devil has ever offer. If we show the world what it is like to live one day in His courts, we will revolutionize the world. 

Realities of Heaven

Something to think about.
 
 Realities of Heaven
 
1 Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Colossians 3:1
 
What are the realities of heaven?  It is the dwelling of God, Father Son, and Holy Spirit. No more death, disease, infirmity or pain. Peace, joy, and happiness are its foundation. Completeness, wholeness is the standard of life. Lack will not exist. Love received without impediment.  No enemy that can taunt, assail or kill. No conflict, war or discord. Worship and praise are unhindered or obstructed.  The fullness of God is ever-present. Jesus our Lord rules. Our eyes, ears, and minds opened and unfettered by the veil of sin. We will live in truth, free from the threat of sin. We will be cleansed from the stench of sin. We will be free.  Our minds will be opened, and we will understand the justice, love, and forgiveness of God. 

Slave to Sin – Righteous to Life

Something to think about. 
Slave to Sin – Righteous to Life
 
16 Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Romans 6:16
 
You can’t live in limbo land. In a place free safe from consequences. There will be consequences for your actions. The consequences will either be beneficial to you or detrimental to you.  If you don’t know it, you are eternal because the spirit of God in you is eternal. You cannot cease to exist.  The consequences of your action are not limited to this side of your existence.  The results of your actions will have permanent repercussions on your life. Which will continue after the end of this consciousness.  Death is not the cessation of life it is the permanent separation from God.  The slave you choose to be will determine your destination for eternity. Either you will live with God or separated from God. Where nothing good or perfect can exist.

A Generation to Come

Something to think about.
 
A Generation to Come
 
18 Let this be recorded for a generation to come, so that a people yet to be created may praise the Lord. Psalms 102:19

Was it recorded for us? This verse can’t be regarding Israel. As Israel already existed when it was written so it could not be “a people yet to be created.” What other people claim the God of Abraham Issac and Jacob? (Exodus 3:15) Christians are the only other people in the world that call on the great “I Am.” We the adopted children of God are that people, we are that generation. We were created that we may praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.

Encouraging One Another

Something to think about.

Encouraging One Another

23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:23-25

We’ve all heard it, I don’t have to go to church to be a Christian. Why then did God institute corporate gatherings? In the old and new testaments, the people gathered together at predetermined times to be taught, educated, and uplifted in the word and ways of God.  We were not created to be spiritual isolationist. We were designed to be bound together in love for our God.  Not even in Christ did we see the totality of God. We need each other to stay faithful to be educated and grow. To reach the purpose God has provided for us. We were made to help each other along the path of life. Without each other, we will end up creating a path that will not lead us to Christ, salvation or joy. We will end up lost.