Come To Know Christ

Do you have a relationship with Christ? Growing up, even though I grew up in the church, I didn’t really have an understanding of who God really was nor did I have the relationship with Him that I needed to have. I prayed all the time, went to church but didn’t know how to build a relationship with Him until one Sunday morning I heard my Pastor preach a sermon about building a relationship with Christ and how we should all come to get to know Christ on a personal level. After hearing that sermon, I reevaluated my relationship with God and come to find out there was a lot that I was missing. Our gracious God desires all to know Christ through repentance, forgiveness, faith and a lifetime of loving intimacy. Jesus came the first time to earth as our Savior. Before He was crucified, He promised that he would prepare a place for us in His Father’s house and that He will come back and take us to be with Him that we also may be where He is (John 14:2-3)

Christ will come again as our Judge. However, our Heavenly father who is patient and merciful, delays His Son’s return. Jesus waits so the unredeemed have time to believe and become sons and daughters of the Almighty. God’s will is salvation in Jesus and not an eternity in hell apart from Him. Like the door to Noah’s Ark eventually closed, so the opportunity to trust Christ is slowly slipping away for many. The flood waters, meaning death will one day drown us. Will we be ready? Salvation and safety can only be found in our Savior and Lord Jesus Christ. “The Lord is compassionate and gracious; slow to anger, abounding in love” (Psalm 103:8). Yet, the Lord’s patient love invites us to repent, trust, and not perish but He also says that even though He abounds in love and forgives sin and rebellion; yet, He does not leave the guilty unpunished (Numbers 14:18).

Yes, we still have to warn others of the Judgment to come. Some will mock, others will act indifferent, but a few will find refuge in Jesus. Most will “show contempt for the riches of His kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance” (Romans 2:4). Billions of people who have done religious things, “prayed the sinners prayer, given money, served in churches will be eternally lost because they have never made Jesus Christ the Lord of their life. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death” (Proverbs 14:12). There are true and false disciples as we hear Jesus say: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord’, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord’, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!” (Matthew 7:21-23).

The patience of our Heavenly Father is the model for us to follow. We are surrounded by a sea of those who need salvation. They are drowning in their sin. By offering them the life preserver of faith, hope and love for Jesus, we can rescue the perishing. A life preserver, however, is useless unless it is thrown into the waters and reached for by those who are drowning. It should be our fervent daily prayer to ask the Father to convict the lost through the Holy Spirit. And that He would give us His wisdom to lead those He places in our paths, so we can teach them from Scripture how to receive salvation through the saving blood of Christ. Once saved, we help them grow in their faith and in the knowledge of what the Bible teaches, so they can live a fruitful life for the Lord. God loves us and does not want anyone to perish. Jesus showed love throughout His ministry but He also knew those who would and would not follow Him. One day as He was speaking of the Pharisees He said: “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules” (Matthew 15:8-9). And He continued: “Leave them; they are blind guides. If the blind lead the blind. both will fall into a pit” (Matthew 15:14).

We must step out in obedience and do what the Lord say do. In order for us to come to know Christ, we must do the following: Confessing our sins and seeing our sinfulness and realizing our desperate need for the Savior. Accepting Jesus as your personal Savior and believing with your heart and not just your head relying on, but fully trusting in, leaning upon, and resting in Him. Believing that He is our Savior first and allowing the Holy Spirit to help you make Him your Lord too. Believing that there is no other way to the Father in heaven except by Jesus. Jesus saith unto him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).

I accepted Jesus as my Lord and personal Savior at the age of 13. Throughout my life, I strayed away from the body of Christ and straddled the fence for quite some time. I felt like the Prodigal Son in some sort. My uncle was a pastor and he really taught me how to rightly divide the word of truth. This is when I really became to know Christ. If there was anything I needed clarification on in the Bible, I went to him to give me an understanding of God’s Word. I called him, “The Walking Bible”, because he didn’t need the Bible to give you the answer you needed. He gave book, chapter and verse. The Bible clearly states in James 1:5, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him”. But, through all the trials and tribulations I experienced throughout my life, it brought me to my knees for repentance where I waved the “white flag” of surrender and cried out to God to save me. The peace He gave me truly passed all understanding.

I realize every day that I must count on God’s grace, His peace, and His love to continue to follow Him or I am doomed. The most important thing we can do-young or old-is develop a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. If we do, we will always be comfortable with ourselves. Any questions of self-esteem and self-worth will diminish and we will have a quiet confidence that will see us through any trial. In Jon 16:33, Jesus says, “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world”. What is the greatest need in the world? The greatest need in the entire world is for every person to have a personal, ongoing, daily, continuing relationship with the Savior. Having such a relationship can unchain the divinity within us and nothing can make a greater difference in our lives as we come to know and understand our divine relationship with God. #ComeToKnowChrist #TheSecondComing

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The Renewing Of The Mind

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God (Romans 12:1-2)

When we begin to change our mindset and our thoughts, we have to begin to SPEAK the true Word of God over our lives! What does the Word of God say about you? Who does God say you are? Dive into the Word today and find out just who you are in Christ. Once you know who you are and whose you are, it becomes easier to change your thoughts and words from negative to positive. God’s Word, “If we suffer, we shall also reign with Him; if we deny Him, He also will deny us” (2 Timothy 2:12). We must begin confessing what the Word has to say about our lives and circumstances, instead of what those in the world may speak about the situation.

When you change your words, you change your world. If you continually speak negative words over your life, then eventually defeat will be the result. In the same way, if you speak words of faith and victory, you will see a harvest of blessing not only in your own life but also in the lives of those around you. Remember your mother telling you: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all”! That was good advice. Don’t give life to your negative thoughts by speaking them out. You can’t continue to speak negative words filled with doubt and unbelief and expect to have a positive life full of joy and hope. You can change your situation by changing your words.

As Christians, we have so many struggles we are dealing with that we may get caught up with battles in our minds. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new”. But where the reality hits the road- we fall short-especially in our thought life. The old way of thinking has not gone away. Many still struggle with temptations in their mind, bitterness, depression, fear, hopelessness, frustrations, problems, and putting it bluntly-evil thoughts. To be a successful Christian means to follow Jesus, to obey His teachings, to love others, to grow spiritually. But this battle still rages in the mind. God’s solution to this battle is not simply to pray more. Prayer is important but we need to do more than pray.

To be honest, it is a struggle in this world we live in and if we don’t keep our minds stayed on the Word of God daily, then we are easily to get off track. Once we renew our minds, God has some great benefits and rewards for us. We will not just be transformed and cleaned up on the outside but also on the inside. You will understand God’s will for your life then. My mind needs a refresher everyday by reading and studying the Word of God. I also have to ask the Lord to guard and direct my mind daily. My mind is the place of my intellect, reasoning, and intentions. My behavior begins in my mind and my mind is where spiritual transformation happens.

I have experienced periods of mental oppression that seems almost physical. A feeling of heaviness accompanies my self defeating thoughts. Most of the time, I realize that I am engaged in a spiritual battle of some sort, but I cannot immediately free myself of it. I pray. I confess. I read God’s Word. I pray some more. ( It should be noted that in my case this is not clinical depression and, if it were, I would seek medical treatment). Eventually my mind is unencumbered, but it is not because I thought positively enough or talked myself out of it. That may work temporarily, but it won’t root out the problem. I know who the enemy is and I also know the only One who can defeat him. Recognize the enemy and fight him with God’s power and with Scriptural truth. I had to learn how to replace self-focused thinking with a God-focused mindset.

“For those who live according to the flesh, set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit, set their minds on the things of the “Spirit” (Romans 8:5). If each Christian would do their part, then God the Father would only be too anxious to complete this transformation process for you through the power of the Holy Spirit. If you decide that you really want God to start the process, then all you have to do is go to God in prayer with sincerity and tell Him you really want the transformation to occur over the rest of your life down here on earth, then you will see the process begin. When this starts to occur, it may be a bit painful at times. It was hard for me and still hard at times but it’s all about being able to endure the process.

But let God do His inner surgery on you through the Holy Spirit and you will be much better off for it in the long run. God wants us to be so in depth with Him, so He can transform our mind, body, and soul. It’s nothing like having a renewed mind in God!

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