Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Devotional 211009

Dear brothers and sisters,
Good morning. The color of Nature reminds us that the autumn has arrived, even though you don’t feel it. It feels like summer weather, which is balmy and warm. Thank God for His wonderful provision that we can be in His service either at home or in the market place. As I prepare my sermon for the Bi-vocational conference, I am reminded once again that God has a plan to use each one of us to impact the people around us. Whether you are aware of it or not, God will make you a channel of His blessings to others. If you yield to His use intentionally, you will share the great joy and glory in the process.

"Dear friends, build yourselves up in your most holy faith and pray in the Holy Spirit" (Jude 20). There was nothing either of the nature of impulse or of cold-bloodedness about Our Lord, but only a calm strength that never got into panic. Most of us develop our Christianity along the line of our temperament, not along the line of God. Impulse is a trait in natural life, but Our Lord always ignores it, because it hinders the development of the life of a disciple. Watch how the Spirit of God checks impulse, His checks bring a rush of self-conscious foolishness which makes us instantly want to justify ourselves. Impulse is all right in a child, but it is disastrous in a man or woman; an impulsive man is always a spoiled man. Impulse has to be trained into perception by discipline.

Discipleship is built entirely on the supernatural grace of God. Walking on the water is easy to impulsive courage, but walking on dry land as a disciple of Jesus Christ is a different thing. Peter walked on the water to go to Jesus, but he followed Him afar off on the land. We do not need the grace of God to stand crises, human nature and pride are sufficient, we can face the pressure magnificently; but it does require the supernatural grace of God to live twenty-four hours in every day as a saint, to go through hard work as a disciple, to live an ordinary, unobserved, ignored existence as a disciple of Jesus. It is inherited in us that we have to do exceptional things for God; but we have not. We have to be exceptional in the ordinary things, to be holy in mean streets, among mean people, and this is not learned in five minutes.

There is no other way to grow than to take one step and one day at a time. The test of discipleship is on how we obey the Holy Spirit in facing our daily chores. If we operate with the notion that discipleship happen within the four walls of the church, then true discipleship will not happen. Discipleship is not on just how many books we need to read, how many Scripture verses we must memorize, and how many sessions of training we must attend. True discipleship is on how we apply what we learn in the regular days of our lives. When no one is watching, how do you walk with Christ? When you are facing the challenge of your work in your office, how do you live out your faith? These are the tests of discipleship. You are not alone because our Lord has sent in your best companion, the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever – the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him, but you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you” (John 14:16-17). As Brother Chambers has said, discipleship is built entirely on the supernatural grace of God. It is not by our will and might to become a “super saint.” It is the Spirit of God who nurtures the live of Christ within us. That’s why Paul said, “My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed in you” (Gal 4:19). God expects you to become Christ like or press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of you (Phil 3:12b). Let people see Christ in you today. Have a blessed day to grow in Him.

Love you according to Christ,

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