Friday, July 29, 2011

July 30, 2011 … Spiritual Growth and Rewards

Passage of the Day: 2nd Peter 1: 10 – 11 (see in bold below) … 5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.
10 Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

My Journal for Today
As a Christian reading this passage, especially verses 10 – 11 in the context of all of the attributes Peter has listed to which believers should aspire, do you find yourself drawn by God’s Spirit into a lifestyle of worship and witness exemplified by these exhortations?

>>> … Do you find yourself drawn like a magnet to a life of fruitfulness for Christ (meditate on John 15 and Paul’s great list of Spirit-given fruit in Gal. 5: 22 – 23)?
>>> … Do you find yourself building a house of faith on the foundation of Christ which will only be completed in heaven (see 1st Cor. 3: 10 – 15)?
>>> … Do you see yourself having a mission and purpose in this life compatible with Christ’s stated mission (in Luke 4: 18)?

If so, take heart … because one day those of us who have been born anew in Christ will be able to lay crowns of righteousness at the feet of Jesus, Who is the only One worthy of such praise and worship (see 2nd Tim. 4: 6 – 8 and Rev. 4: 10 - 11).

Personally, I find all of this daunting; because, though I do live for such pursuits, I most certainly fail at times, falling short of the mark which God’s Spirit sets before me. But if you, who read this, join me in surrender to the ideals of such a life of worship and surrender (see Romans 12: 1-2), we can revel in the assurance of our salvation. It is a healthy thing to be convicted when we sin and even to have doubts; … but to be able to openly and honestly confess those failures before God’s throne of grace and receive His merciful cleansing (see a verse I’m sure you have memorized - 1st John 1: 9). And we should be bathed in the confidence of what Peter has shared with us – inspired by God’s Spirit – in the passage above. We are CHRISTIANS !!

I once heard John MacArthur on the radio say that to have confidence in our salvation, we really must concentrate much more on our DESIRES than we do our DOUBTS. And if your desires really focus on Christlikeness for our own lives, we really should be buoyed in the assurance of our salvation; because lost people just don’t desire to become more like Christ. They are focused on themselves; and their doubts are in their own inabilities, not their shortcomings relative to our Lord. And so, my fellow Christ follower, it is our lot to live in this life worthy of that life we pursue; and that is Jesus Christ. [see Eph. 4: 1 – 2] And so, we move on to that end.

My Prayer Today: Thank you, Lord, for leading me in this life to become more like You. Amen

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