If the Fullness of God Dwells in Me…Can You Imagine it Would Make No Difference in My Life…?
Sunday, our pastor talked about how many people who call themselves Christians, “Know the lingo but do not know the Lord.”
I examine my own heart when I hear things like that. I honestly get a little scared. I learned about Jesus from a very early age and chose His path when I was nine years old. I should be so much further along! Sure…I know the lingo! I was raised with the lingo.
I sometimes think about how people who weren’t raised with our terminology or the story of the cross must think it all bazaar.
In fact…I know why the Bible cautions us to let the little ones come to Christ and not forbid them because they are so young. Childlike faith is simple faith. It is faith that accepts the things they don’t understand, because their hearts tell them it is real! As adults, we obviously have a larger struggle. But…once these little ones grow older, they struggle with the more grown-up logic and have to continuously choose to believe the story of the cross and walk with God…or not. Perhaps this…this! is where the rubber meets the road.
Sometimes we wonder about the ones that chose Jesus when they were little and now show no fruit. Are they Christians? Did they ever really choose Christ and have they now rejected Him?
Thankfully, it is not up to us to judge and yet…when you love that person it can be excruciating not to know.
The Pastor said something so profound… “If the fullness of God dwells in me…can you imagine it would make no difference in my life?”
Galatians 5:22-26 (NIV) 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
Yes…there is room for growth in each one of us…always…until the day we go to heaven. But…there ought to be fruit!
This verse implies some work on our part…some intentional cooperation with God in the process that should be continually changing us. Our salvation is not by works, of course…but it begs repeating; If the fullness of God dwells in me…can you imagine it would make no difference in my life…in your life??
2 Corinthians 7:1 (NIV) 1 Since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.
Living things grow…and growing things live. Choose to grow in the stature of Christ! Pray that He will open your eyes and give you the desire and courage to take the steps you know He wants you to take.
If you know someone who will not pray like that…pray for them. Intercede on their behalf!
Kind of makes me smile that no one can stop you from interceding in his or her life through prayer! At times it makes me feel mischievous…brings me a little delight…like I have just climbed a fence with a no trespassing sign in order to snap a beautiful picture! 😊
Choose Christ…then choose to grow!
Ephesians 4:14-16 (NLT) 14 Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
Romans 7:21-25 (NLT) 21 I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. 24 Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.