GOD FIRST – Giving Him the highest place

If we say we are believers in Christ, there is a pertinent question to ask ourselves. The question is – ‘Am I a lover of God?’. You see, when the Pharisees asked Jesus what the greatest commandment is, He answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.” Why do you think Jesus said that loving God with all that we are and all that we have is the greatest commandment? It Is because that is God’s greatest desire.

POSITIONED TO THRIVE

Cacti are meant to grow in extremely hot conditions because they can store up a lot of water. They can also typically take in a one-time heavy rainfall. But, can they survive in continuously damp or wet soil? The answer is no, they rot. This is exactly what will happen to us if we position ourselves in an environment that is not meant for us – we will rot (a process of deterioration). On the other hand, when we position ourselves in the right environment, we will see how we thrive, grow and accomplish all that God has ordained for us.

TRAINING THAT LASTS ETERNALLY

Training – we come across this word so often in our lives – be it school, college or work. Any training is to help one grow from knowing very little or nothing to excelling in a particular task or subject. Today, laypersons are taking up training classes and becoming professionals in so many things. Think about it. If a layperson needs training to grow in a particular field here on earth – how much more do we, believers, need to grow in Jesus Christ to become like Him? We repeatedly say that we want to be like Jesus – but the truth is, we cannot become like Him unless we train ourselves in His character, mind and ways. And, this is a training that will not be rewarded here on earth alone, but has its reward in eternal life.

A GOD-LED OR WORLD-LED LIFE?

When we try feeding infants solid food, they either throw up, cry or push the food away. Some infants accept the solid food, but they vomit it out because their body is still not ready to digest it. Some others do not even accept it because they cannot enjoy it – one bite and they will zip their mouths and cry if you try giving them more. Apostle Paul understood this aspect about infants very well. That is why when he was addressing the church in Corinth, who were quarreling, having strife and jealousy among themselves, he told them that they were behaving like mere infants in the faith.

STANDING ON SOLID GROUND

Have you seen a little baby, an infant, moving around? I’m a mother of an infant now and I often observe that my child does not stay on a particular object or in a particular space for more than a few seconds. She does not even know which object is good for her and which is not, and so she goes around trying to touch, pick and put everything that she comes across in her mouth. Just like a little baby is clueless and gullible, those who are still infants in their faith in Jesus Christ, tend to lose track and are easily stirred by emotions, circumstances or teachings that come their way. That is why, Paul tells us that we should no longer be infants, but grow and become mature in Christ.

BE SET FREE

A lot of us love hearing sermons, worshipping Jesus but when it comes to reading the Bible, we slack behind. I’ve heard common reasons like “I don’t like reading much”, “I don’t have time to read, so I just pray”, “I feel sleepy”. Let me tell you, it is by knowing (understanding) the TRUTH (the word of God), that you and I can be set free from chains, bondage and every weapon that the enemy attacks us with. That is why Jesus told those who believed in Him, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

GROWING INTIMACY WITH GOD

Have you ever watched a shepherd calling out and leading his sheep? It is a fascinating affair. All that the shepherd does is speak a word to call out to them, and in no time, his sheep listen to him from no matter how far they are, come to him, and flock around him. It is no wonder that Jesus used the relationship between a shepherd and his sheep as a parable to explain His relationship with those who love Him and believe in Him.

CULTIVATING A STEADFAST MIND

How often do we find ourselves fluctuating between good and bad moods, joy and sorrow, fearlessness and being fearful, like a wave tossed back and forth, high and low? For some of us, this is a reality that we are getting used to and beginning to live with.
Yet, the word of God tells us that this is not God’s will for us. He wants us to be steadfast. Yet, how?

AN INWARD SHINE, TRUE HOLINESS

The true holiness that Christ desires in each of us is beautifully portrayed in King David, a man after God’s own heart, also a man who had committed adultery. To God, King David is like snow. Just as David prayed, ‘Wash me white as snow’. Like snow, clean inside out. In his prayer of repentance, David shows us how we can truly be holy.