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This is Newsletter number twenty eight out of 31 in the Life Principles series and the heading is – No Christian has ever been called to “go it alone” in his or her walk of faith.
Word of Wisdom: Christ has set us free to live by the Spirit. All who live by the Spirit and are led by the Spirit reap a great harvest of moral transformation: The fruit of the Spirit.
No Christian has ever been called to “go it alone” in his or her walk of faith:
Who is in charge of your life – you or Jesus Christ? Do you have a lot of problems in fellowship with other believers in your church? If you have you are in charge of your life and not Christ!
God made us for fellowship with Himself and other human beings. We need fellowship to grow more into His likeness. True fellowship with other Christians comes from the heart of those set free. That means when we have “problems” with other believers we need to look at our self and change! True fellowship is born out of the heart of the individual’s true personal healing and freedom. An individual who once was in captivity and found freedom through Jesus can let the Lord do the work in other people without interference. It might be a good idea for many churches to focus on getting the body healed of her emotional woundedness before seeking to discern her spiritual giftedness. And if the leaders of the church are not set free, then what? Do the leaders encourage your God-given gifting? If not, maybe you should then ask your Father in heaven what to do?
The woundedness of the church manifests itself in many different ways: conflicts, disunity, focus on the wrong things rather than heart-born ministry, rejection of people in pain, inability to implant change and failure to fulfil Christ’s calling.
To live a Christian life is to change into His likeness! Why do we then resist the change?
“For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” Galatians 5: 13. We are free in Christ, but we do not have license to sin because it no longer fits who we are as the children of God. Rather, we have been set free from every encumbrance to become who He created us to be – those who build up and encourage others through creative, Spirit-led ministries. Why would anyone who truly loves Jesus want to use his or her Cross-bought freedom to do anything that disgraces His name?
“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.” Galatians 5: 16.
Answer to life’s questions: What is the fruit of the Spirit and how does it grow in me? The following is directly quoted from The Life Principles Bible – Charles F. Stanley.
“Believers who truly walk in the Spirit radiate integrity. They do not hide their true feelings, harbour self-serving intentions, nor would they ever try to take advantage of you. In fact, you may feel as if you can trust them with your most intimate secrets. You may even find yourself opening up to them in a way that is quite uncharacteristic for you.
Spirit-filled believers do not pretend to be perfect. In fact, they often offer humble apologies before they are confronted with wrongdoing because the Spirit alerts them when they have offended or hurt someone. Secure in their relationship with the Lord and their worth in Him, they are able to respond quickly once they realize and admit their sin or error in judgement. They remember that the Holy Spirit is continually sanctifying them – transforming them into the image of Christ. Therefore, they are not discouraged, but are thankful that His grace is always available to them when they stumble and that He is teaching them to rise above their fleshly appetites and desires.
Specifically, their lives exude nine virtues: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. This fruit is not simply a mark of the Spirit-filled life; it is the pre-eminent evidence of a life that is fully submitted to Jesus Christ.
When reading about God’s grace, ask Him to show how you can be more grace-filled with others. He may help you recall the unkind things you’ve done in the past, but when you surrender your will to Him, He will make you a kinder person who reflects His love to many.
Do you see the problem?
– “I want to be more kind.”
– “I need to act more loving.”
– “I need to exercise more self-control.”
– “I … I … I … I … I …”
The fruit of the Spirit isn’t produced when we focus on ourselves- it is a result of being singularly centred on Christ (John15: 5): These virtues aren’t goals we can pursue, and they were never intended to demonstrate our dedication and resolve because you and I cannotyield fruit. Rather, the Holy Spirit is the producer and we are merely the bearers. And the harvest that results from our walk with Him merely reveals our dependency on and sensitivity to His promptings.”
Friendships are divine blessings in our lives.
“Not that we are sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God, who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.” (2 Corinthians 3: 5-6)
Inspired by: Charles F. Stanley Life Principles Bible. (New King James Version)
Prayer: Today, I pray that I will allow Jesus Christ to live through me by the Holy Spirit, Amen.
God loved us so that we might love others. He blesses us that we might bless others That is what the Christian life is all about – if it is done in the Spirit to glorify Jesus Christ.
To help people to identify and carry out their mission in life.
To help people and/or their families with all kinds of problems, including stress, depression and addictions.
To lead people to have a loving and personal relationship with the Lord.
“Speak for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”