The Mind of Christ?

It Is at Cross Purpose to 
That of the World.
Philippians 2:5; Proverbs 22:4
First and foremost is humility. Humility is being neither arrogant nor self-righteous. Romans 12:3 states that one is not to think too highly of one’s self but to think soberly. I have to admit that I struggle with being humble. It is in my selfish nature to want to promote myself. Yet, when I have chosen to think less of myself and put other interests before my own, I have been blessed and God has rewarded me. One the other hand when I try to promote myself, I take a fall and my pride is dealt a blow. This is an ongoing battle within myself. 
Proverbs 22:4  tells me that the reward of humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life. This is contradictory to what the world promotes. The world calls me to promote myself and my interests before that of others. This only leads to loneliness and pride. 
The key to living a life with the mind of Christ is to look to Christ as my example and prayer. In Ephesians 3:19-21, I find that God is more than able to do all that I ask according to the power at work within me for His glory. It is when I forget this that I fall short and become self focused. God is after all able to supply all my needs but I must come to Him in complete trust, God confidence, and ask knowing that He will hear and answer my prayers. This is an ongoing relationship between me and my Lord Jesus. 
My Challenge to you is where is your mind focused?
My Prayer: Dear Father in Heaven, forgive me for putting my focus on myself and not on You. Grant me the desire to seek to follow your example and think less of myself and more on You and the interests of others. You alone are able to do this and ore than I can possible ask. Amen.
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Heart That God Desires

Profound Respect for God;
Understanding Fully that He is God;
Responsive to His Touch
God desires a heart that fears Him which will lead me to worship Him with an awe-filled reverence and profound respect. God desires for me to keep all His commandments so that it may go well with me and with my children forever (Deuteronomy 5:29). This is the type of heart that I desire in me to worship Him with all of me.
God desires to change me from the inside out to know Him, understanding fully that He is Lord; I will be His and He will be my God. I will return to Him with my all of me (Jeremiah 24:7). I know that this is why David was a man after God’s own heart for though he sinned, he always returned to God with his whole heart. I, too, want to want others to see me that same way. When I fall short, I pray that I will return to God with my whole heart.
God has given me a new one and put a new spirit within me. He has taken my heart of stone and given me one of flesh, that is responsive to His touch, that I may walk in His statutes and keep His commandments and obey them (Ezekiel 11:19-20). Therefore, He has made me new and given me a heart that desires to serve, love, and worship Him. When I find myself in a foul mood, I need to return to Him and ask Him to renew a steadfast spirit within me.
God alone has the power to change any heart. What is the condition of your heart today?
My Prayer: Lord God, You alone have the power to change my heart. Forgive me, Lord, when I stray or when my heart has become one of stone. Renew a steadfast spirit within me. Amen.
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God is Sovereign; In Control

God is sovereign

In Light of Today’s Political Environment

God Remains Sovereign!

 Sovereign means supreme; preeminent; indisputable. It also means greatest in degree; utmost or extreme. Therefore, God is supreme; preeminent; indisputable; greatest in degree and utmost. He is above all of the current affairs of man. I am reminded of Daniel 2:20b-22;

“Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
to whom belong wisdom and might.
21 He changes times and seasons;
He removes kings and sets up kings; 
He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding;
22 He reveals deep and hidden things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with Him.”
God alone knows the outcome of our elections and He has a purpose in it. I may not like the choices set before me but as a believer, it is my duty, privilege, and honor to cast my vote. God knows my future and I know that this is not my home. At the appointed time, I will go to be with Him in heaven but for now, I am giving a task to be His ambassador to take forth the message of reconciliation. His grace is enough for me. Yet, I too often forget and begin to fret. Reading my Bible and taking time to spend time with God, He so easily reminds me that HE is in control.
 Related link; Study in Daniel
My Prayer: Dear Sovereign Lord, You have the power to remove kings and set up kings. You are in control and I am to trust You in whatever comes my way. You alone know what the future holds and I am to be secure in that knowledge. Forgive me, Father, when I question You. I ask for wisdom to understand what is taking place. Amen.  
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Christ’s Ambassador(?)

What Does It Mean to be His Ambassador?
As His ambassador, God so desires to make His appeal through me (paraphrase of 2 Corinthians 5:15-20). I no longer live for myself but for Christ, therefore, I am to regard no one according to worldly standards and values. In Christ, I have been made new and the old is gone. Having been reconciled to God through Christ and made new by the Holy Spirit, I have been entrusted with the message of reconciliation.
Ambassador – an authorized messenger or representative. In the Bible, 2 Corinthians 5:20, ambassadors are those appointed by God to declare His will. An interesting note:To do injury to an ambassador was to insult the King who sent him. Therefore, God is insulted when His ambassadors are injured.
I am to forget the former things and not dwell on the past for God is making things new (Isaiah 16:18). In doing so, I can forget what is behind me and strain toward what is ahead pressing on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:13b-14).
Now I must examine myself as to how I am living my life as His ambassador.
Am I stuck in the past?
Have I regarded others according to worldly standards and views? 
How am I handling His message of reconciliation?
Am I straining toward what is ahead and pressing on to win the prize?
I must be honest and say that I am not doing a very good job at it but I know that with His help I can do better and strive to be His ambassador and carry forth His message of reconciliation.
My Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, I admit that I am not doing a good job as Your ambassador. I struggle to refrain from using worldly standards and values when regarding others. I do not handle Your message of reconciliation properly. Forgive me Lord. Cause me to be a better ambassador and give me grace to handle Your message. Amen.
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Chew On This!

You Are What You Eat; 
Ever Thought of God’s Word as Food?
How does one chew on the Word of God? You maybe be familiar with Psalm 34:8 which tells us to “taste and see that the Lord is good.” But there are other places in the Bible that describe God’s word as food. Even Jesus said that man cannot live on bread alone but the by every word that comes from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4). The prophet, Jeremiah, ate God’s words and they became a joy and a delight to his heart (Jeremiah 15:16) then he was called by God. Another prophet, Ezekiel, was instructed to eat a scroll given to him and it tasted sweet as honey (Ezekiel 3:1-6) and then he was called to prophesy to the house of Israel. The apostle John while in exile and in the spirit also received instructions to eat a scroll. He was told that it would be bitter on his stomach but sweet as honey in his mouth (Revelation 10:8-11). He, too, was then to prophesy about many people and nations and kings. King David found God’s words to be sweet as honey to his mouth as well (Psalm 119:103). Taking in God’s word, these men were sent to share it with others.
How can digesting God’s word help one to share it with others? By digesting it, it becomes a part of me much like the food I eat. When the opportunity presents itself, I find that God’s word comes to my mind and I am able to impart it to others. His words are in my thoughts and in my prayers. Yet, when I deprive myself of it I am prone to grumble/complain as well as be a bit self-centered in my thinking. I am thankful to have God’s word so that I can spend time reading and digesting it. I am called to share what God has given me.
My challenge to you is to chew on the Word of God and taste and see that He is good.
My Prayer: Lord God, give me a hunger and thirst for Your word so that I may take it in and make it a part of me. Forgive me for times when I am neglectful to read and digest Your word. Amen. 
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More Spiritual Abundance

More of God’s Gifts.
Supplies: Philippians 4:19,
And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.  
Entrance: 2 Peter 1:10-11,
10 Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. 11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (The qualities mentioned here are found in verses 5-7 of the same chapter. Read the first 15 verses. There is a lot of great wisdom here.)
God bids me to come and ask having the faith which is more than believing; it is  knowing that He will provide. I have experienced His abundance and answers to many a prayer. I use scriptures to pray because all God’s promises are yes in Him. There are many times when I have had to wait on God’s timing and times when I have stepped out on my own only to fall on my face. God is more than gracious to forgive me and has taught me many valuable lessons from my wrong steps. There is a big difference between need and want. Philippians says that God will supply all my need not my want. I do want to use caution here and remind you that 2 Peter is not promoting works for salvation. Paul is pointing out the qualities that are desirable in a believer and that there is a reward in heaven for those who practice these qualities. There is to be fruit that bears witness to what I believe.
My Prayer: Dear Lord, hear my prayer, cause me to develop these qualities in my life that I may bring You glory and show others the way to You. Forgive me when I fall short and I will more times than not. Help me to forgive myself and show grace and mercy to others. Amen.
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Spiritual Abundance

Here are just a few of the many spiritual gifts that God gives to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. With these gifts I am better able to be a blessing to others and glorify God. God He is indeed a good, good Father. He bids me to ask and keep on asking, to seek and keep on seeking, and knock and keep on knocking. It is an active relationship between Him and I. I have at times and I am experiencing these gifts in my life. He truly is able to do more than all I can ask or imagine. These amazing spiritual gifts are to build others up and glorify God.
God’s Gifts of
Joy: Psalm 36:7-9,  
  How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house,
and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light do we see light.
Life: John 10:10-11, Jesus speaking,
  10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.
Grace: 2 Corinthians 9:6-8,
Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
Power: Ephesians 3:20-21,
20 Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
What spiritual gifts has God given you and how are you using them?
 My Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, it is by Your mercy and grace that I have received Your many blessings and gifts. Help me to use them wisely and with discernment to be a blessing to others. I give You thanks and praise for them all. Amen.
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Ask & You Shall Receive

Yet, God Does Require Something of Me First.
John 14:13; 15:7;  16:24; 1 John 5:14
Ask and I shall receive sounds great, however, I can’t just ask for anything and everything I want. In God’s word Jesus tells me that whatever I ask for, I should ask it in His name that the Father may be glorified. It tells me further that I am to abide in Him and His words in me then what I ask for will be according to His will which is key to receive that which I ask. This way, too, I am asking for others and not just myself and seeking to glorify God and not myself. My heavenly Father wants me to ask according to His will and in the name of Jesus that in receiving my joy may be full. God is a good Father. All good gifts come down from the Father. It is out of His great love for mankind that He bids me to come to Him with my petitions and requests. Let me not forget to ask with praise and thanksgiving in my heart. According to Matthew 21:22, I am to have faith when I pray that I will receive what I ask and in God’s timing not my own. However, Satan wants to fill my head with lies that my heavenly will not hear me let alone answer. For when I am not in prayer, I am defeated. Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world.
My Prayer: Lord, hear my prayer, You are a good, good Father for You love me with an everlasting love. You are sovereign and there is none like in all the earth. Please give me wisdom and discernment in dealing with others that I may bring You glory. Amen.  
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Lack Wisdom then Ask God

He Finds No Fault in Our Asking!
James 1:5; 3:15-18
I, especially, like James 1:5 because God finds no fault in my asking for wisdom; not only that but He also will give it generously to those who ask. How often, am I generous when asked of something? Not so much, I’m afraid. I am so glad that God is not like me. Yet, His wisdom is far greater than worldly wisdom which is envious and bitter as well as full of self ambition. God’s wisdom is from above and it is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness. Who wouldn’t want this kind of wisdom? How can I not turn to God for something that I am lacking?
As I encourage my young men, who have their unique challenges, into the working world, I have to draw on God’s wisdom so that I do not sabotage their growth. I lift them up in prayer that God would give them strength and perseverance necessary to do their work. I know that God has a future and a hope for them. I cannot allow myself to get in the way. I cannot rescue them. The time as come from them to become all that God has created them to be. God, alone, is able to give them the ability to achieve success. I need to trust that God will continue to help me to be who they need me to be.
My Prayer: Dear Lord God, I praise and thank You for the job opportunity for my young men. Please inspire them on to greater things and strengthen them. Help me not to get in the way or to rescue them. You have a purpose and a plan for them. Amen.
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Spiritual Rest

Good for the Soul.
In Matthew, I am instructed to turn to Jesus to find rest for my soul, for He is gentle and His yoke is easy. From Proverbs, I will dwell secure and be at ease, without fear or dread of disaster, if I listen to God’s wisdom. I looked up the definition for refuge and I chose the third definition; anything to which one has recourse for aid, relief, or escape. God is where I can turn for aid, relief, or escape for there is no other place that can afford me the security that He alone provides me. Psalm 62:8, God is my refuge and I am to trust in Him at all times. It is in Him that I find my rest and He will renew my strength that I may be all that He created me to be and do. Rest in Him; it does the body good! Another verse that comes to mind is Psalm 46:10, Be still and know that I am God. Here I need more help with because it is not easy for me to be still. Yet, I cannot hear God speak to me if I am busy all the time.
If I am to be at my best, I need to heed God’s Word and pause from all my activity and spend time in His word. All work and no play makes me a very tired person. God desires to give me time to seek Him in order to receive that which is good for my soul.
How can you seek rest for your soul?
My Prayer: Dear God, may I find my rest in You. You alone are my refuge yet I am not always mindful of this. Help me to remember that You are my strength and source of rest. May others find rest in You as well. Amen.
Note: I will be absent for a few days but will return on Thursday. Blessings to you in His grace and peace.
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