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A Thought for the New Year: God Is Perfecting Us

January 12, 2009

God calls us to go on into perfection.  When the Bible uses this word, it implies completion of a task or mission. God promises to give us grace so that we can complete our God-given assignments.  He uses our difficulties and our times of suffering to perfect us, by having us become more dependent upon Him, and by helping us to hate the evils of this world, to overcome them and to replace them with His love and His purposes.   Our eternal mission is to be fruitful, multiply, effect the earth with His presence, and reign over the earth.  Man failed; Christ accomplished what man could have and should have done.  Now Jesus reigns.  He wants to reign through us.  He will accomplish and manifest His reign on earth through us.  Through Christ we can know, be, and do all God has called us to be and do.  He is perfecting His life, His ways and His desires in us so that we can desire His will and His kingdom to come into us and through us onto the earth.  Some daily applications:

Perfect in Christ

To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.  Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.  To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily  (Colossians 1:27-29 NKJ).

God wants us to be perfect in Christ.  He wants us to be perfected by, through, and in Christ.  He is raising up leaders who will receive His desire for others in the body of Christ to have this.  Paul knew this desire.  He knew it for himself, but more importantly He knew this desire of God for His people.  Paul knew this was a mystery, only able to be understood and received through the revelation of the Holy Spirit.  Christ living in us--this is the key to being perfected by God.  Paul taught his people this principle, showed them how to receive it and to let it work within them, warning them in the process, lest they fall short of all God wants and has provided for them.  This is a labor of love, letting God work in us so that we become vessels of the perfected life of Christ to come into and be understood and received by others.  Paul had a mighty power of God working in him, enabling him to do these things.  This power is available to all of us who are becoming perfected in Christ so we might work with God as He perfects others through the perfected life of Christ.

 Father, we rejoice in Your desire to perfect us in Christ.  We rejoice that You are able to give us the desire, grace, and empowerment of the Holy Spirit so that we can do all You have for us to do each day as You bring all things into and under Jesus Christ.  Help us to live daily for You.  Amen.

 

A Thought for the New Year:  God Is Perfecting Us

January 13, 2009

God calls us to go on into perfection.  When the Bible uses this word, it implies completion of a task or mission. God promises to give us grace so that we can complete our God-given assignments.  He uses our difficulties and our times of suffering to perfect us, by having us become more dependent upon Him, and by helping us to hate the evils of this world, to overcome them and to replace them with His love and His purposes.   Our eternal mission is to be fruitful, multiply, effect the earth with His presence, and reign over the earth.  Man failed; Christ accomplished what man could have and should have done.  Now Jesus reigns.  He wants to reign through us.  He will accomplish and manifest His reign on earth through us.  Through Christ we can know, be, and do all God has called us to be and do.  He is perfecting His life, His ways and His desires in us so that we can desire His will and His kingdom to come into us and through us onto the earth.  Some daily applications:

Christ Has Perfected Us

For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.  But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before, "This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them," (Hebrews 10:14-16 NKJ)

Jesus knew His Father's plan for His people to be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth, and subdue it.  He knew they would fall short.  He was willing to be the perfected life for God to use in order to redeem His people from their lives that had gone astray from God's purposes, and to bring them back into God's original plans and purposes.  He is our Redeemer.  Now Christ lives in His people, and His life in us wants us to be holy and pure.  God sees us as we are to be, and will be, through the perfected life of Christ living in us.  The life of Christ--His seed in us--will grow and occupy all of our being.  God has promised to put His ways into us, so they become a part of us and we become united with them.  He promises to put His laws into our heart and to write them on our mind, so that we become united with God, love His ways and do His will.  This is the promise of the New Covenant.  Jesus lived to show us the possibility, the blessedness and the joy of living in God's will through the leading and empowerment of the Holy Spirit.  Now He comes to live in us, imparting that life into us, so we can be united with Him, having the ways of our flesh brought to death through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Our focus is not on, "Stop sinning," but rather on looking unto the perfected Christ, and letting the Holy Spirit lead us into all the things God has for us to do each day. We overcome the ways of Satan, the world, and our flesh by focusing on the perfected Jesus and receiving and executing the plans He has for us each day.  We see each day as an adventure, walking in the Holy Spirit, manifesting the perfected life of Jesus into each event before us. We can do all things through the perfected life of Christ.

Father, we rejoice in Your revelation to us of our great need to be perfected.  We rejoice that You do not frustrate us with this need, but You show us all You have provided for us in the perfected life of Christ who lives in us.  Help us to trust in You as You accomplish this in us through Christ in us.  Amen.

 

A Thought for the New Year:  God Is Perfecting Us

January 14, 2009

God calls us to go on into perfection.  When the Bible uses this word, it implies completion of a task or mission. God promises to give us grace so that we can complete our God-given assignments.  He uses our difficulties and our times of suffering to perfect us, by having us become more dependent upon Him, and by helping us to hate the evils of this world, to overcome them and to replace them with His love and His purposes.   Our eternal mission is to be fruitful, multiply, effect the earth with His presence, and reign over the earth.  Man failed; Christ accomplished what man could have and should have done.  Now Jesus reigns.  He wants to reign through us.  He will accomplish and manifest His reign on earth through us.  Through Christ we can know, be, and do all God has called us to be and do.  He is perfecting His life, His ways and His desires in us so that we can desire His will and His kingdom to come into us and through us onto the earth.  Some daily applications:

Empowered by the Holy Spirit

Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13 NKJ).

God has put the Seed of His life--the life of Jesus--into us.  God has translated us out of our old life, the life that lives for the pleasures of this world and our fleshly body, and brought us into the life of Christ.  The reality of our being in Christ, and having the life of Christ in us, must be made manifest into all of our being--our spirit, our soul and our body.  In this way we will want to--and be able to--know and do the works God has put into us and before us each day.  The Holy Spirit living in us is the revelatory power of God, and the energizing Presence of God, placed in us so these things can be accomplished.  This sounds like a monumental and almost impossible task.  It is--for us!  But God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we ask or think.  God enjoys revealing His Presence and desires to us each day, and then offering us the empowerment through His Spirit to do them.  This is how He perfects us, leading us to know, trust, experience and follow Him in all that He is doing as He brings all things under Christ-- through imperfect, weak, rebellious people like us, believing in His loving and perfecting power made available to us in and through Christ.

Father, we rejoice in You and in Your provision of the way for us to be able to know, desire, live in and accomplish Your will for us.  Thank You that through Jesus living in us we can know and be empowered to do the things You put before us.  Help us to focus on Him who lives above, over and in us.  Amen.

 

A Thought for the New Year:  God Is Perfecting Us

January 15, 2009

God calls us to go on into perfection.  When the Bible uses this word, it implies completion of a task or mission. God promises to give us grace so that we can complete our God-given assignments.  He uses our difficulties and our times of suffering to perfect us, by having us become more dependent upon Him, and by helping us to hate the evils of this world, to overcome them and to replace them with His love and His purposes.   Our eternal mission is to be fruitful, multiply, effect the earth with His presence, and reign over the earth.  Man failed; Christ accomplished what man could have and should have done.  Now Jesus reigns.  He wants to reign through us.  He will accomplish and manifest His reign on earth through us.  Through Christ we can know, be, and do all God has called us to be and do.  He is perfecting His life, His ways and His desires in us so that we can desire His will and His kingdom to come into us and through us onto the earth.  Some daily applications:

Perfect in All the Will of God

Epaphras, who is one of you, a bondservant of Christ, greets you, always laboring fervently for you in prayers, that you may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God.  Colossians 4:12 NKJ).

God has a master plan, to bring all things under the dominion of Christ.  He has a plan to perfect us so that we can rule and reign with Him in ever-increasing levels of assignment and responsibility.  He is perfecting us and positioning us to that in the times of increasing shaking of the kingdoms of heaven and earth, we will be ready to bring in His Presence and Kingdom in ever-increasing ways.  And yet, as big and masterful as is the greatness and plan of God, He wants us to come to Him for wisdom and grace so that we can do His will in every situation.  He wants us to reach out to the poor and needy, to show love to one another, to give a cup of cold water to those He directs to us, to forgive those who persecute us, and to speak words under the empowerment of His Holy Spirit to those in need of healing and deliverance.  In short, He desires and provides grace and empowerment for us to do His will in all things, from the least to the greatest.  The seemingly least of our actions can often have the greatest impact for the purposes of His Kingdom.  When we fail, or when we sin (or miss the mark), we need to confess our sin, or our lack of listening to His voice, or our unbelief, etc..  When we confess our sins He forgives and cleanses us and is ready to impart the grace we need to keep from committing the same sins.  The perfect thing to do is to let Him search our hearts, to let the Holy Spirit lead us into having our sins revealed, and to let Him empower us so we remember to receive grace each day to know and do His will.  We need "Epaphrases" who will pray for us to be perfect and complete in all things, and we need to be "Epaphrases" for others, interceding for them so we all come into the perfection of all the will of God through Christ in us.

Father, we rejoice in Your desire to perfect us in all things.  We rejoice that You also call and enable us to want these things for others and to work with You as You perfect them also in Christ.  Help us to serve You as Your Spirit imparts Your will and life into us through Christ.  Amen.

 

A Thought for the New Year:  God Is Perfecting Us

January 16, 2009

God calls us to go on into perfection.  When the Bible uses this word, it implies completion of a task or mission. God promises to give us grace so that we can complete our God-given assignments.  He uses our difficulties and our times of suffering to perfect us, by having us become more dependent upon Him, and by helping us to hate the evils of this world, to overcome them and to replace them with His love and His purposes.   Our eternal mission is to be fruitful, multiply, effect the earth with His presence, and reign over the earth.  Man failed; Christ accomplished what man could have and should have done.  Now Jesus reigns.  He wants to reign through us.  He will accomplish and manifest His reign on earth through us.  Through Christ we can know, be, and do all God has called us to be and do.  He is perfecting His life, His ways and His desires in us so that we can desire His will and His kingdom to come into us and through us onto the earth.  Some daily applications:

Christ Will Perfect His Bride

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish (Ephesians 5:25-27 NKJ).

Christ has a vision for His bride, the church. She is to be wearing a proper wedding garment which consists of a white garment of the robe of Christ's righteousness.  Because we have acknowledged our need of Jesus to be our Savior, God covers us with the garment of Christ's righteousness.  This is called imputed righteousness.  When God looks at us, He does not dwell on our inner sinfulness, but He calls us righteous, He calls us saints, because He sees us trusting in the righteousness of Christ, and He trusts in His Son's calling as our High Priest to purify us entirely.  However, in this passage Jesus is said to prepare Himself a Bride without spot or wrinkle.  Skin blemishes result from inner things in our bodies.  Christ is in the process of imparting His righteousness into us in such a way that we become internally cleansed and purified.  The sanctifying and perfecting work of Christ can complete His work of cleansing His temple so that we become a glorious church.  Paul talks about our being changed from one degree of glory into another, as we behold the glorious and resurrected Christ.  Let us go on into perfection, becoming all God wants us to become, and doing all God has created us to do, so that we can show the world the infinite power, grace, and mercy of God as He gathers all things together in Christ. "Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen."  (Ephesians 3:20-21 NKJ).

Father, we rejoice in Your great wisdom and desire to reveal Yourself to us in ever-increasing ways each day.  Help us to know Your eternal plan in Christ and to receive grace and empowerment from Your Holy Spirit so we can do what You put before us each day.  Amen.

 

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Serving God as He Unites Heaven and Earth in Christ

     
Rich and Kay Fick, Directors, Cyrus Ministries International

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