LIFE WITH CHRIST—A MODEL OF LOVE

God’s love is unconditional, He pours in so we can pour out.

~ Lisa Blair

We are to love one another unconditionally, as our Father loves us in our sinful state, without conditions, caveats, or exclusion. We are to have Jesus’s mindset.

Love breaks down walls and gives the giver peace despite the circumstances. We don’t have to like everyone or keep them in our circle if toxic in anyway, but as a child of God we are required to love them as He loves us.

God pours His love into us so we can pour it out into a dark world, casting light and changing the atmosphere. When we reflect chaos and hate, we are contributing to the darkness. When we, like Paul, love everyone as God loves us, our love attracts others who are seeking God and want a relationship with Him. We are the model of Christ. Are we modeling Him or living in the natural world modeling the evil one? Do we love unconditionally, are we kind, do we sacrifice for the good of others, are we patient, trustworthy, faithful, gentle and maintain self-control?

For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
‭‭Galatians‬ ‭5:13-14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Do we love our neighbors, those around us wherever we go? Are we the model God sets before man? The world sees Him through our actions. Are we modeling unconditional love through our actions or reinforcing worldly values and sel-righteousness? Paul wrote a letter to the Philippians stressing that we are to emulate Christ in all we do.

Have this same attitude in yourselves which was in Christ Jesus [look to Him as your example in selfless humility],”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭2:5‬ ‭AMP‬‬

Daily reminder, recite each morning   Today I go forth (intentionally) modeling Christ.

Images and Scriptures—YouVersion.Bible.com

Resource— Nelson’s Quick Reference. Warren Wiersbe

Free Yourself From The Shackles

Jesus humbled himself to the point of death to give us life. We should be able and willing to humble ourselves and, honestly, repent for our sins (stating what they are or were) and start anew (fresh). It is never too late, God forgives us when we repent, allowing us to move-on shackle free. Christ gave us the opportunity to rise above who we (presently) are. It is time to change our home location,  we are in this world, but not of this world. 

Go to a quiet place and speak to God, ask Him to forgive you. You choose the place. It could be in the midst of a train station, bar, standing on the corner in busy traffic. Just still yourself and pray. He will receive you wherever you are at the moment.

We belong to Christ. New Beginnings.

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RePost – Naked Without the Armor

The Bible offers everything we need to be active Christian Warriors. It gives us spiritual authority and is our manual for living a Godly life. While in prayer this morning, something came to light. Many of us may read parts of the Bible from time to time, But we do not study what we have read. We understand what we read intellectually, but there is so much more. To understand the spiritual intent, we have to study what was read. When reading Ephesians 6:10-18, we understand we should clothe ourselves in the armor, but do not necessarily understand why we should do so, or what each piece represents. This Post will explain the what and the why. The most important point is that we are naked and vulnerable without the armor. As the adage says, ‘don’t leave home without it.’

In reading the Book of Ephesians, particularly chapter 6, we see Paul wrote to Ephesus alerting them that the enemy is always near and ready to attack. In Ephesians 6: 12, 13 NASB, he warned:

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” our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.”

There is no question that our struggle continues to be a war against the rulers of darkness. We can see it in our daily lives, on the news, and social media. The evil forces are in play, we see violence and hate in every aspect of life. We are in the midst of an invisible war, one that works through people. We struggle with uncertainty, fears, and doubts. Scripture makes it clear that much of our self-doubt, our difficulty in keeping healthy relationships, and many of our fears are rooted in the efforts of those same ‘spiritual forces of evil’ that plagued the Ephesians. Paul warned that we cannot be passive Christians. We cannot use the term ‘Christians’ without acting Christ-like. Christians have to exude Christ-like behavior through our actions. We must actively change our position and become Christian Warriors because we live in a time of full engagement against the evil forces of darkness. The evil one is present and works through people, he will not back down and neither can we. We are in the war, like it or not, there are no deferments. God calls for peace, and the evil one calls for chaos in all that we do. We cannot go quietly in the night, we have to rage against the evil forces that try to debilitate, paralyze and destroy us.

‘The evil one continually tries to infect us through our wounds inflicted by sinful words and actions that warp and twist our self-image’. He tells us we are unlovable, useless, hopeless, frail, weak, not good enough, and failures. He intentionally places difficulties, trouble, and chaos in our paths. He tries to destroy our inner peace and distort our harmony that should exist in our relationships with others and our surroundings.

Always be alert. It is important to recognize that we are prey to the evil forces of darkness and as in other parts of our daily living, must protect ourselves, and put on the Amor of God. The Armor of God is our invisible clothing Each morning when dressing for the day, putting on our visible clothing, is the perfect time to also put on our invisible clothing. In fact, we should begin the day with prayer and put on the Armor before getting out of bed.

The Armor

The Helmet of Salvation covers your head, mind, and eyes. 

The helmet is our invisible filter and keeps evil out of our mind. It helps our focus on the Lords will and not on sin. It helps ward off and reject harmful words and actions directed at us by others. It protects us from evil. It deflects hurtful things people say and do to us. It protects us while we live out our ‘true identity in Christ’.

The Breastplate of Righteousness protects your heart.

Righteousness is the quiet voice of the Holy Spirit that lives in us; it is a gift from God, and cannot be earned. Righteousness is much like a filter that strains out unGodly things and reinforces our desire, to be honest, trustworthy, kind, good-hearted, loving, and joyful. (Fruit of the Spirit – Galatians 5:22-23). It guards our mind and emotions.

The Belt of Truth holds us together. 

It keeps all the armor in place. It is like a belt or a girdle-like support strap. It supports our core. It helps keep our heart and mind focused on Christ. Without the belt of truth, we are not prepared to stand and fight. The belt represents living a life of honesty and integrity. It supports our total commitment and devotion to God Almighty.

The Sandals of the Gospel of Peace (the Good News) weaponry covers our feet.

Everywhere we walk, we walk in peace. Our footwear keeps us from hurting our feet. The gospel of peace is the Word of God that we share with others as we walk in His Word. Without the Gospel of Peace, we are barefoot and cannot walk without fear. The footwear brings ‘inner and interpersonal peace when we commit to living by God’s Word, which means forgiving those who may have harmed us.

The Shield of Faith protects us from the weaponry of the enemy. 

God gave is faith to protect ourselves from the things we cannot see and may not understand. It enables us to advance, despite adverse circumstance.

The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God.  

Gives us boldness to reject and attack misinformation. We can use it to defend ourselves from things we may or may not know are wrong. The sword cuts through everything the enemy can send our way. It is the only defensive weapon we have. Everything else wards off the offensives of the evil one. The sword is the way, the truth, and the light. It is the Word of God. This sword is able to cut through every defense our enemy can raise. When wielded by us, nothing can withstand its ability to cut straight to the core and uncover the truth.

We are naked when we do not wear the Armor of God. Never go out without it. We put on a coat to protect us from the cold and our armor to protect us from the evil one.

Faith, Hope, Love, Dependency, and Obedience Synopsis

Finally, our March theme is affirmed by this Post. To be Christian Warriors we must have faith, hope, and love. When we are in a relationship with a loved one, we have faith in them, love them, are in a dependent relationship with them and are obedient to the values and intent of the relationship. Putting on the Armor of God is a faith move by which we are dependent upon the fact that it works to protect us. We are obedient in that we put the Armor on every day. We have hope that our armor will hold up and invite others to live as Christian Warriors, and for non-Christians, to receive the Lord’s salvation and join our family. Love, the most important of these, operates in faith and dependence upon the Word of God and his relationship with us.

Sources

Books:
The Full Armor of God, Larry Richards
Waging Prophetic War, Jennifer Claire

Websites:
The Belt of Truth and the Breastplate of Righteousness. Bible.org, Mar. 3, 2018
The Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. Freebiblestudyguides.org, Mar. 3, 2018
Helping Children Put On Their Armor Through Prayer, Lisa Blair, Youngchristianwarriors.com

Images – Google Images
Scripture-Biblegateway.com

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.

Lips Expose the Heart

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The things that proceed out of our mouths are the things of our hearts. These things defile us.

Jesus spoke to his disciples and said, “These people draw near to Me with their mouth and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me.” Matthew 15:8

“For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fortifications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies. These are the things which defile a man.” Matthew 15:19

Jesus was speaking to the disciples about the Pharisees who questioned Him about the actions of his disciples. They wanted to know why his disciples did not wash their hands before eating bread and why they transgressed the tradition of the elders. Jesus, in turn, asked the Pharisees, why did they transgress the commandment of God because of their tradition.

He further shared with the disciples that tradition is not bad, religious customs and rituals in themselves are not bad unless they take precedence over the clear Word of God. If these things begin to replace the Word of God, they become a problem because they sever the connection with God, who wants our hearts.

When we speak, when our lips move, do they speak of the things of this world that have become our idols, things of our flesh, or do they speak of the things of God: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, products of a Spirit-filled life? (Fruit of the Spirit, Galatians 5:22-23)

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Our lips expose who we are. Our outward appearance may suggest that we are followers of Christ. We go to church, honor our religious rituals and customs, quote scripture, and tell the world we love the Lord, but our lips betray us and expose us to the world. God sees how we behave. He hears what we say. And, is often displeased because all He asks of us is to give Him our hearts, to earnestly and honestly worship Him, and stop displaying actions that express our flesh and not his Word.

Ask yourself, am I more like the Pharisees than Christ? Am I a vain worshiper? Have my lips exposed me? What can I do to change who I am and how I act? Am I willing to repent and turn away from the things of the flesh today, and give my heart to the Lord?

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Today is the best day of your life. Give your heart to the Lord and enter into a relationship with Him. We must deny your flesh every day and pick up your cross to become more like Christ.   Working to become mature, intentional Christian Warriors is a daily process and often a challenge to put our old man down.

My cousin summed it up – “Wonderful words don’t let your mouth profess one thing and your heart another ❤️”

Images – Google Images

Scriptures – Biblegateway.com

Resource – Life Principles Bible. Charles F. Stanley. NKJV

Visit my Young Christian Warriors site. The earliest Posts were written to help parents guide and train their children to access the Word of God to direct their steps. Later Posts were written for everyone, though I believe the Posts to parents can serve as reminders for all ages.

Related Posts:
YoungChristianWarriors.com
~Use Your Words, June 7, 2018
~God’s Promise – The Lord Determines Our Steps, April 27, 2018
~Thoughts as I work on Part 3, God’s Will – God’s Promises, April 19, 2018
~Change Your Filter, Hear His Voice, February 22, 2018
~Core Values Early In Life, September 23, 2017

Dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com
~Let the Spirit Lead-June 29, 2018
~God is With Us Even When We Feel We are Drowning, June 8, 2018
~The Lord’s Light Shines Through You, May 9, 2018
~Lack o Discipline, Part of Growing Peace and Holiness, May 5, 2018
~Free Will, Water Cooler Talk, and Responsibility, April 4, 2018
~Dying To Self, March 24, 2018
~Who Directs Your Steps? March 13, 2018

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.

Be Strong, Do Not Waver

It is important that we do not waver in our faith, even when we do not feel like it, or when things are not going our way.

The Lord is our rock, shelter, healer, teacher, advocate, counselor, guide, friend, and Father. He is always by our side. He is always with us.

We are secure in the hands of the Lord, when we waver, we enter uncharted waters.

Images – bible.com

Scripture – YouVersion, Bible.com

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.

Use Your Words

As we tell children, use your words. Words have creative power. Speak to yourself. Speak to the Lord, and believe what He promises you. Stay in agreement with the Lord, hang all hope on His Word. God will never leave you or forsake you.

I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart.
Jeremiah 1:5, NLT

Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.
Deuteronomy 31:6, MSG

It is comforting in knowing that He will never leave us or forsake us. This truth allows us to stay in faith when we are suffering through whatever circumstances are prevalent in our lives. Always focus on the truth – God will bring you out. Through faith, even if we do not see what He is doing, we know that He is working behind the scenes for our good. God orchestrates the outcome long before we are aware of the prevailing circumstances.

Don’t wallow in despair, which is what most of us want to do in times of stress. It is important to continuously stir up our faith, especially when you want to give up. Remember God is always working, especially when we are weary. Faith reinforces our stamina, it girds us up. Jesus carries us when we cannot take another step. This is the time to stay in prayer and use our words to verbally seek our Lord.  Which words you ask? The Word of God, the scriptures in the Bible. God enjoys our relationship with Him. Feel free to speak His words back to Him asking for guidance and deliverance.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen.
Hebrews 11:1

Our future is always greater than our expectations

Expect a supportive outcome, it may not be what you expected, but it will be one that moves you forward. Speak to the expectation/outcome, whatever it is. Don’t speak failure or despair. In other words, do not harp on being fired, speak to the next step, a new job or career path. Ask God to show you the way and put you in the right place at the right time. Be open to new adventures. Give God your attention and He will reveal how his promises operate in your life. You ask, when will I see my next step, when will I have a clear vision? You may see it either through revelation before it manifests or after the manifestation when you have the opportunity to look back over the given episode in your life and you are able to say ‘ah-ha’, that is where God moved in my life.

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In review, this post began with Romans 8:18 and covered the entire chapter. Take time to read Romans 8 after completing this post and reviewing the summary below. Ask God to show you how He supported you in your life to this point, how opportunities arose, health was reclaimed, spiritual maturity developed over time, how your family prospered, and your career took a turn that led to a success that you could not imagine.

The entire chapter directs us to keep our mind centered on the things of the Lord. These points will help you on your path

 

  • The Holy Spirit resides in us and therefore lives in us.
  • It highlights that we have been adopted into God’s family, which leads us to spiritual maturity, and is our inheritance.
  • We are no longer orphans, God adopted us into His family.
  • Belonging to God’s family means we should no longer be frustrated when suffering through our own experiences, or by what we see in the world. because we have hope, which is part of our inheritance.
  • God’s purpose is for us to succeed here on earth. He gave us the Holy Spirit who intercedes for us and guides us as we pray, and He ensures that life’s circumstances work out for our good, no matter how painful they may be.
  • God always sees us through the dark days.
  • God’s love is real and manifests in us in the form of the Holy Spirit, who is the very life of Jesus Christ.
  • Nothing can separate us from God’s love.

USE YOUR WORDS

Tell yourself, I have God’s favor, nothing can hold me back. I am standing fast to my faith, even in the darkest hour. My God is still in control. If God is for me, then who or what can be against me and succeed? My God is a good and faithful God. His glory in my life is His promise to me.

Images – YouVersion, Bible.com; LAB Photography

Scriptures – Biblegateway.com

Resources – Hayford’s Bible Handbook. Jack Hayford, General Editor, 1995. Nelson’s Quick Chapter-by-Chapter Reference: Bible Commentary. Warren Wiersbe,1991.

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.

Showing Goodness

As humans, we often become frustrated when the person on the other end of a business call cannot assist us. The reality is that we are not angry at the person but the representative of the company. The problem is that during work hours the person on the other end of the call is the representative, they are one and the same during working hours and are simply responding according to the company script.

Christ tells us to exhibit ‘goodness’ in all we do, that includes being kind to all people. The person on the other end of the phone does not deserve a curt response or defamed in any way. They, like most of us, are working to earn a living.

So, let’s agree that we can all do better. I can do better. Before speaking when we do not agree with or do not like what is being said, we should quickly think – would Christ respond in the way I am planning to proceed? The answer is an emphatic, ‘NO.’ One of the God’s gifts to us is goodness.

For He satisfies the longing soul and fills the hungry soul with goodness.
Psalm 107:9 NKJV

O, my soul, you have said to the Lord, “You are my Lord, My goodness is nothing apart from You.”
Psalm 16:20 NKJV

The Lord gave us ‘goodness’ so we could become more like him. Our responsibility is to [try to] purposely display goodness in all that we say and do.

But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
Galatians 5:22-23 NLT

Our goodness is connected to the Lord, it fills our soul. Without goodness, we are left with exhibiting meanness, and on occasion, wickedness. Absent goodness, we become hosts of evil residing in this world, and cannot proclaim ‘we are in the world – but not of the world’.

We can all do better, we can show goodness in our conversations, actions, and deeds.

Images – Google Images; LAB Photography

Scripture References – Biblegateway.com

Thank you for spending time on my sites, if you like what you are reading, follow me, lisasdailyinspirations.wordpress.com and receive the daily inspirations in your inbox, or visit my other site, youngchristianwarriors.com and subscribe.