Thursday, July 28, 2011

Real Hope - Daring to Experience Fullness

What Joy there is in Living for God? I am His! I am joyful!
Real Hope has nothing to do with what a person, a church, the government, a job, riches, or anything can do for you. These can only bring short-term satisfaction. Tell me about yourself? Tell me who you are, not what you do! Our identity is found in our source of hope.

Real hope is only found through Jesus. Anyone who commits to live for Jesus, to give their everything to Him, will know real hope. Accepting Jesus is an all of you surrendered acceptance unto Him or a none of you option. You can't partially be God's! Many people go to church, serve in ministries, attend studies or meetings, get involved in good causes and have kind-hearted intentions, but even with all of these great qualities, they can still miss Jesus. HOW?

Knowing God is different than following God as His believer. Do you believe in God, that there is a God, that God is real OR do you believe God and confess Him to be your Master? When a person follows God, that is, becomes His disciple, they no longer live for themselves but they offer their every breathing moment to being who God created him/her to be. Faith is about being (surrendering), and through believing, you will naturally do (obey).
But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him (Hebrews 11:6).
We can't do our way into God's heart. We can never please Him enough by all the great programs, events and activities we are involved for Him. The Bible says these kinds of actions are like fifthly rags to Him (literally dirty, used menstrual rags - I know that is not a pleasant picture, but it is Biblically how He describes our good works.)

But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. (Isaiah 64:5-7)

We must be His child, be redeemed, be forgiven, be filled with His Spirit, be ready, be relational, be His child, be a source of living water, be His recipient of grace, be healed, be changed, be motivated by love, be attentive, be listening, be Christlike.... be everything He desires us to be. In Christ, it matters first whose we are, not what we do.

Being His comes before serving Him. Are you His? Does He possess all of you? Are you totally abandoned unto Him? Are you ready to go, walk, speak, sit, pray, hug, rest, etc because He asks you to?

I don't know what God will have me do today... living as His child is a daily adventure. What I do know is that I need to be His, always available, always listening, always ready, always seeking to be walking instep with His Holy Spirit. I know no other way of living, and I wouldn't want life any other way. The peace and joy from being in continual access and communion with God is the greatest delight anyone could attain in life - nothing else compares. My heart is filled and my joy is complete.

Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.(Romans 15:12-14)
Sure, laundry is piled out of hampers, papers are scattered that need to be filed, meals have to be planned, responsibilities and deadlines must be met.... living with, in and for God doesn't make the practical details of life disappear, but it does bring a fullness of living into even the most mundane tasks like scrubbing a tub, pulling weeds, or cleaning the garage.

Christians have a poor reputation in the world. Hypocrites are everywhere; people pretending to know God. People thinking they know the answer or truth to life's purpose want to do something great, successful, powerful, financially thriving, and influential. Everything we do: our plans, our desires, our schedules, our programs, our buildings, our things, our activities, and our ideas can be purposefully used by God, but the act of doing is not what makes us His.

Living for God brings real hope that is not some man-made, artificial promise that will never satisfy your every need.

Only being rightly related to God can give the foundation to begin abundant living. He is the beginning, the source, the motivation, the goal - He is everything and complete! He surpasses our wants, needs and dreams - when we surrender to Him to have His way in our moment by moment practical life.

Are you stepping out it in real hope today? Do you dare to walk by faith and experience His fullness?

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