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Stirring The Deep


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Made in God’s Image

Made in God’s Image

What God as been teaching me lately …

We are made in God’s image. Genesis 1:26 One of the main aspects of this likeness is we create with our thoughts. It isn’t if we do or don’t, we do. Our thoughts create. What is the main difference between two people, the difference that really matters in their lives? Their thoughts based on their belief systems.

The ramifications of our thoughts are either good or evil. They either work for our and others’ benefit or destruction. Apart from God, we can’t know what is truly good in every situation for all people because we can’t see the end of the ripple effects we create. We might judge something as good that really isn’t. This lack of judgment between good and evil is a problem when you are by nature a creative entity. Adam and Eve showed us that. Further, even if we know what is good, in our own power we aren’t able to do good in every situation.

We aren’t meant to do make our own judgments or rely on our own power to perform. Yet, that is what many strive to do. God created a much better way.

To live in goodness and what is helpful, pure, truth and love for us and others, we need to give up our self-directed creative power in every area of our lives and let God’s creative power flow through us so that we are living out His will. Only God is good. Only God knows the end result of any one act. Only He is powerful and pure enough to do good every time for all people. Therefore, to live truly in all that is good and loving for all, we have to give up our self-directing creative power and gain God’s. This is the surrender He calls us to. Matthew 16:25 This surrender leads to eternal life because only what is of God lives forever.

How is this surrender manifested?

We begin by grasping two key areas of knowledge, which we do by seeking God and His truth. First is the deep understanding of the destructive nature of our self-directed creative power, and its consuming nature in every area of our lives. To understand we can’t judge on our own, and we need to operate by God’s will. When we gain this awareness, our response is to want to completely rid ourselves of our self-directing ways as we see them for what they are – paths to death. This response is a desire to “die to self”.

The second area of knowledge is to learn about God and His truth; His perfection, the power of life His truth holds, the purity of His love, and that only His ways are good. Only when we know and trust God, can we truly let go of this self-directing will. We trust what we know. In understanding these two areas and personally witnessing their truth in our lives, we will want nothing but His will. We long to be utterly consumed by His perfection and nothing of our own making apart from Him. John 15:5

In seeing our self-directed creative power for what it is and God for who He is, we are jolted to give up our destructive self-will and embrace His on every level. Only by choosing to give up our self-directed power, we are able to be filled with His. It’s one or the other.

Next, by “dying to self” and seeking the truth and ways of God with all our heart, soul and mind, God writes His truth on our hearts. By doing so, He renews us, regenerates us and makes us into new creations as He alters our very core with His love and truth. Through this process, which incorporates our circumstances, His Word, and God’s instruction, we become new creations as our deepest thoughts and belief systems are transformed. Galatians 2:20 All the old things pass away and are replaced with a mind and spirit crafted in His truth. 2 Corinthians 5:17 With a new mind, what we now create is in line with God’s will because our thoughts are governed by His thoughts.

This path of regeneration is the journey of every true believer; one in which we are made into sons and daughters of God and brothers and sisters of Christ. John 1:12

Patience is required through this process as all we are is peeled back, exposed, and renewed. Every area of our lives has been under our self-directing power. Therefore, it takes time as God’s truth penetrates our souls and purges the layers self-directing power and instills His creative spirit in their place. 1 Peter 5:10

If we chose to hold onto our self-directed creative power the end is death. Ultimately what isn’t of God dies for God is life, the life force by which all things exist. Separation from Him is death. As the perfect Father who loves His children, God is sustaining us in His mercy as we are renewed.

One note, as the Great Tribulation is upon us, this sustaining hand of God will begin to withdraw and people will be given over to what they have chosen. In following self-directed ways, those ways will consume them as an addiction. We are ensnared by the work of our own hands. It’s we who bring judgment upon ourselves as we live out what we have chosen. Again anything not of God leads to death. However, for those seeking the regeneration of their spirits by God, in these days they will continue to be transformed from glory to glory.

If you choose the latter by seeking God and letting Him create you, you will become who you’ve desired to be. This path is one of entering into God’s rest because it’s He who works in you, as you let go, seek and abide. The regeneration is His work. He tells you what He will do, does it, and you glorify Him. You let go of control and God takes over. Yes, God is that good.

Living by the creative power of God is the kingdom of God. It’s God’s Spirit filling every aspect of your unique being making you who you were created to be as His perfect creation. You are transformed by His power into the fullness of who He created you to be as a beautiful vessel powered by God. This is eternal life. This is God in us and us in Him. This is the kingdom of God. This is what Jesus came to preach and continues to as the Word of God. This is how you will do more than you ever imaged; because you are greater than you ever imagined. John 14:12-13, 14, 20, Ephesians 3:20, Matthew 4:17


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Discipleship Of Christ

Discipleship Of Christ

 

Our beliefs determine everything. When our beliefs are transformed and remolded, we change. Our beliefs change when we deeply learn something new. It’s a depth of learning that reshapes our souls and thus our lives. This remolding is what God calls us to in seeking His truth, and not a head knowledge that affects little. When I speak of learning in this post, I’m speaking of a depth of learning that is really a remolding that makes us into new creations.

Galatians 1:11-12 But I make known to you, brethren that the gospel which was preached by me is not according to man. 12 For I neither received it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came through the revelation of Jesus Christ.

From God, we learn the deep truths of God that transform us. He is our Creator; He does the remolding. I didn’t experience transformable learning by hearing others talk about God. Others can point to the way to truth. They can talk of the truths of God, but the depth of knowing of those truths as we are intended to know them, can only come by being taught by the Holy Spirit. This transformable learning is why we were given the Holy Spirit.

1 John 2:27 But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

Each one of God’s children is called to be a disciple of Christ, not others. Matthew 28:19 Jesus Christ is the Word of God. Thus, we each are to individually abide in the Word of God, the Bible, seeking the instruction of the Holy Spirit. Likewise, we are to support others in becoming disciples of Christ, not others.

Matthew 23:8, 10 But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi’; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren. 10 And do not be called teachers; for One is your Teacher, the Christ

In the verse above the titles teacher and Rabbi denote authority and supremacy in the area of instruction. The Rabbi held an honorable place in the synagogue as he was seen as the expert in spiritual matters. When Jesus came He took the place of the teachers who held that authority as noted in the verse. Christ alone became The Teacher having preeminence in instruction about Him and His kingdom. Jesus came and made everything personal including instruction.

Yet, Paul tells us that God appoints teachers for the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 12:28) However, this role doesn’t contain the authority of what Jesus spoke about in Matthew 23. If so the verses would be contradictory. Teachers among the brethren are simply that, our brethren. All they say is secondary and points to our Teacher’s words. Effective teachers help others discover the truth, for that is all they can really do. For a healthy family, our Father, God, should hold the role as the utmost Teacher in each one of our lives. This means we spend time daily talking and listening to HIM, not others, through His Word and prayer. It’s critical for the strength of His body, the true church, that each one of us builds our foundations on Him and not each other. This is also the only way we can test all spirits as we are instructed to. 1 John 4:1

What are the Roles of Others’ Words in our Lives?

Confirm what God has taught us.
Exhort to obey and seek God’s truth.
Support us in learning from God and trusting in Him, which is faith.
Encourage us in our relationship with God.
Clarify and enhance our learning from God.

These are the purposes for which I write. It isn’t to teach as we think of teaching. I don’t believe we can truly teach each other to the extent that brings true transformation. God is God. We are not. He is the one who works in us according to His good pleasure and will, not us. Phil 2:13 Thus, the role of a human teacher is to guide and point to the Teacher. They are facilitators, and not to take the place of the Holy Spirit in one’s life. Yet, this is what you see happening far too often.

2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;

I’ve been sitting at the feet of Christ, and not others, for 10 years. For the years before compared to the years after – there is no comparison. It was like I learned nothing before by relying on the instruction of others.  Initially, it took getting used to as it was quite the paradigm shift, because it’s ingrained in us that we learn from other humans. We are still learning from another, but it’s God. Learning from God Himself has been the reason for transformation in my life. The remolding has been extensive. What I’ve gained has far exceeded my expectations. It’s the type of learning that reaches to your very depths and brings powerful change in every dimension of your being. It’s about having the right balance of God first, then others in our lives.

Here is a critical truth most overlook; those taught by God are the ones who truly come to Christ, the truth. John 6:45 People can say Christ is their Lord, but only those taught by God truly come to Him. When they do, their lives testify to His presence. These abide in it the Word and live it. They become the bride God calls them to be. They have the mind of Christ. Christ’s spirit dwells within them. Their lives have power. They are freed from sin. They experience all things becoming new. These are the ones who have diligently sat at Christ’s feet as His disciples.

Few walk this path because it’s an individual commitment and pursuit, but for those who do they are the ones who become united to God in truth and spirit. Matthew 7:14, Matthew 22:14 Be aware of at whose feet you are sitting; your spiritual life depends on it. Put the crutches aside and abide in the pure Word of God seeking to be taught by Him. Be patient and in time your life will begin to bloom.

If you are interested in hearing more about the Holy Spirit as the Teacher in our lives, you can listen to my podcast: Holy Spirit as Our Teacher