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Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, (2) as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby,  (3) if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious. 1 Peter 2:1-3 The passions and desires of a converted saint are different from the cravings of the sinner. Even though there is still that memory of a life without power driven by the force of sin, he is now free to make better and wiser choices. One must be fully aware of the power of the gospel of Jesus Christ to save everyone who believes. The tensions that exist between the bondage of the past and the freedoms that lie ahead in the future will be ever present. Yet they are now expendable. These things may try to attach themselves to you, but they have been expelled from within you. This is what Peter was addressing when he instructed believers to lay all these other things aside. They do not give expression to the new nature within you.  You are now in control and responsible for how these things affect you. Allow your affections to be directed towards those things that add to your…

“I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees You.” Job 42:5 When God is abstract, one must use his imagination in drawing a composite of Him. But when one is close enough to see Him, all they have to do is report to others what has been made known to them. What we hear of Him ought to wet the appetite of the hearer to be drawn closer by the Holy Spirit. When we are drawn close enough to see His features we see in Him what we so desperately need. Then it does not take any exaggerated language or overly dramatic expressions to convey to the heart of others the knowledge that has now become a part of us. It is as easy as breathing because we are reporting and not selling. He does the work in our hearts and imparts to us wisdom that is beyond their years. It is the personal experience that transforms us from seekers to saints. As eyewitnesses of His glory, we are changed. The change within us is sufficient to invoke the change in others. Once we have seen Him through the eyes of the Spirit,…

“He who walks uprightly, and works righteousness, and speaks the truth in his heart” Psalm 15:1 The benefit of abiding with Christ is the motivation to act is governed by the Holy Spirit rather than merely our own minds. The thoughts generate from God and are transferred to the heart so that the will is to do His will rather than what previously occupied our time and attention. It is not a matter of consciously manipulating the mind to think right. There is a continual flow from the heart to the mind maintaining an awareness of God’s Presence at all times. Then it is not as much of a strain to make the right decisions in relation to our walk. Though temptations may come and trials may test our faith, we know that He is with us and we know that He working in us. Now when we speak, we speak from a changed heart. His Word is hidden in our hearts and no other language is our own other than what is being translated into life within us. What marvelous position to occupy when God is able to convey His truth boldly through an earthen vessel that has been transformed…

“But He is unique, and who can make Him change?  And whatever His soul desires, that He does.”  Job 23:13 God is complete in and of Himself. He is not like us with needs that may cause our focus to shift from one thing to another. Those are the limits placed upon the human experience. We navigate through time not knowing the things that lie ahead of us. But God knows the end before the beginning. He is light and in Him are no shifting shadows. Why would He change His mind for such things that may be a fleeting thought within our minds? Instead of His mind being changed by us, our minds are to be renewed by Him.  True humility is exercised when we are willing to forgo our will what another wills. When we trust Him in areas not completely understood, He will give us the will and desire to please Him. We will experience His goodness and grow in our understanding of dimensions of His love. What a blessing it is to find pleasure in what pleases Him! His uniqueness can then be celebrated rather than loathed. Some may wish to wrestle out of His hands what…

“But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.” Philippians 3:7 What a marvelous work must have taken place in the life of Apostle Paul to now be at a place of devaluing what once was measure of his boasting. Now things had changed for him. Things that were measured as advantages had now become deficits. If they remained his central focus or if he took pride in any other thing, it would diminish the opportunity of knowing Christ as being far more superior to any other thing. It is a matter of prioritizing our lives where Christ becomes all and other things are subordinate to our seeking to know more of Him. This can only happen among those who once knew that they were boastful. Pride has many disguises. Some would say that they are proud of the fact that they are not proud. This oxymoron hides behind a thin veneer of humility. When we become aware of our pride, we then give the Holy Spirit opportunity to free us from it. The test of true humility is when we determine not to know anything but Christ and Him crucified. There we harness the energy…

“And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs.” Mark 11:13 Jesus expected figs out of season as He approached a tree bearing leaves. The closer we are to Him, time no longer the measure for seasons of change. His Presence is sufficient to cause flowers to blossom and fruit to be borne. Seasons are a means of measuring natural things. The almanac records planetary alignments and climate changes. The time for planting is different from the time of reaping. Then what grows must mature before it is ripe for harvest. Yet Jesus expected fruit to be produced before harvest time. Since nothing but leaves were there He cursed it so that nothing would ever grow in it again. The lesson was for His followers. There is a moment in time allotted to us by God that must be seized. It not, the heart is hardened and mind is fixed to remain as it was. He says to us, seize the moment while the Word and Spirit combined brings in a…

“Since everything here today might well be gone tomorrow, do you see how essential it is to live a holy life.” 2 Peter 3:11 (MSG) How quickly things can change from what we have grown accustomed to into something of which we are totally unfamiliar. The transitions occur as a judgment against every standard that opposes what ought to be established. The infusion of sin and the reinforcement given to it by an ever expanding majority opinion hastens the Day of the Lord. When right appears wrong and wrong appears right, God alone must vindicate His honor. He brings to naught systems and all under the authority of the rebellious and reestablish in its place newness. Do not be alarmed at the destruction of the wicked. These things must be if ever the Lord is to be glorified. Opposing and competing forces cannot coexist. The strength of the strong will overtake the weak, and the wisdom of the wise will befuddle the foolishness of the foolish. Since it will happen immediately, we should apply our hearts to live a holy life. The signs are before us now. The rapidity in changes around is our alarm as to how uncertain all things are….

“This perverse way of life will be like a towering, badly built wall that slowly, slowly tilts and shifts.” Isaiah 30:13 (MSG) It is not the beauty nor the height of the towering structure erected. What matters most is that it is built according to the specifications required for endurance. The life that endures is the life rooted and grounded in the Word of God. Its architecture may not be as impressive as the hastily constructed and massive structures with greater eye appeal. These are lives built upon lies that eventually erode at its foundation. Its character will eventually betray its impressive beauty and slowly but surely, the light of truth will expose the perversity of its ways. Christ had no beauty that we should desire Him. Only those whose hearts gravitated in the direction of the Father with true love were able to recognize Him. The same is true in our day. Most would be impressed but deceived by eye appeal and blind to the things that really matter. But blessed are your eyes for they see, and your ears for they hear, and your hearts for it understands the value of the only message that can permanently and eternally change…

Psalm 145:4 “One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts.” We have been assigned to make a difference in this generation and leave a legacy for all the generations that come after us. What matters most is not what we may have enjoyed in our lifetime, but what we leave behind for others. Today, we are either reaping the benefits or suffering the consequences of former generations. However, these conditions do not just develop, as there were people who set the stage that we currently occupy. In a sense, they were our fathers, for we are the products of their investments and efforts. Consequently as fathers, there are many things to consider—since we give birth to sons and daughters, what kind of world would we wish for them? Fathers of families, fathers of movements, and fathers of nations share this one thing in common; they all set the pace and rhythm for their generation. As time advances, the objective is for the progression of people commensurate to the progression of time. We are growing older, but we must also grow better. Although God works within the framework of time, He is not confined to…

“For what if some did not believe? Will their unbelief make the faithfulness of God without effect? Romans 3:3 God is determined to fulfill every one of His promises. Too much is at stake for Him to fail. Yet there are many who doubt Him and question His authority and abandon their post defecting from the faith. Does unbelief negate God’s faithfulness? He allows the rain to fall on the unjust as well as the righteous. He provides for believers as well as unbelievers. Seasons of the year that change for all to receive the benefits of change. Yet God is determined to raise up a remnant among His people who will obey Him and receive the full benefit of His promises. They will hear His voice and heed to His call. If not the parents, He may reach some of their children. What is rejected by one generation may have been embraced by their successors. God will provide future evidence of His truth. When all else is shaken and crumbles to the earth, His Word will remain. And what was once cast down and rejected will be raised by and through what God has already spoken.