Every Good and Perfect Gift

Every Good and Perfect Gift

Every Good and Perfect Gift

The Book of James 1:17“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

 

Every good thing is given and every perfect gift is from above; it comes down from the Father of lights (the Creator and Sustainer of the heavens) in whom there is no variation (no rising or setting) nor shadow cast by His turning (for He is perfect and never changes).

Humans are a funny bunch.

For the most part, they don’t know what they have until they lose it and they don’t have a real appreciation for the value of something until it’s gone.

I believe that in our walk and relationship with the Lord Jesus there are times that He must withhold certain things to teach us this lesson. 

Getting right to the point, I have seen this withholding in my life especially in my relationship with Him. I have experienced His intimacy morning after morning during my quiet time hours. 

Just like the story of the manna, you must feed on the Lord Jesus Christ daily to stay alive spiritually. It’s like being awakened from sleep or having a fog lifted from your being. 

When He comes in His is manifest presence your mind, body, soul, and spirit respond to Him.

You receive from Him life, light, energy, love, and a host of gifts. You become one with Him and become more like Him.

I believe that He honors your willful choice to see Him, ask of Him, and knock on His door. This must be a constant daily practice. He has been so good to me in this regard over the years. 

Randy is not only a great author but a great photographer. He takes all the images on his blogs. 

Fellowship with Jesus is life itself.

But what happens when you go into a period of soul darkness? You may experience a valley of the soul when things seem dead or dark and the Lord seems far away.

You ask, where is the intimacy, the presence of the Lord, the joy, the supernatural power?

My personal experience has been one of a very challenging life, many difficulties having to do with mental peace and tranquility. 

I have at times felt and experienced great mental and emotional turmoil, depression, loneliness, confusion, despair, extreme shame, and unstableness. There have been times in my life where I could barely cope with being here on this Earth.

This has been true for me from the early age of 5 and 6 as I have struggled with self-rejection believing that I was an outcast and different and that the world would never accept me, nor would I be accepted by society. 

The lies of the enemy can start at an early age. 

He is not respectful of any human.

My only way out of the turmoil of being a human and in practice the only thing that has made any sense to me was pursuing an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. (God the Son and my Creator). The grace that He gives overrides so much of the frailty and what lacks in me.

It most definitely reflects best in the idea of being a new creation in Him. All of this comes from being in a close intimate relationship with Christ.

And so, when I am in a dry spell spiritually and lack these daily graces,

I do have a greater appreciation for His grace in every area of my life including my heart, my soul, my mind, my spirit, and my physical existence.  

He sends grace on your relationships, your work, your ministry, and even the seemingly insignificant things.

I choose to keep pursuing Him and know that His intimacy and those daily graces will return if I wait on the Lord and have faith in His love.

Every Good and Perfect Gift

Examples of God’s Grace in My Life

 

1.) Waking up empty, cold, hard, distracted, passive spiritually and when you meet with God, coming before Him in whatever state, He comes to you in manifest power and His presence purges, cleanses, and enlightens, makes alive, energizes you (physically, spiritually, mentally) and you get to enjoy God and His goodness! “The chief end of man is to know God and to enjoy Him forever”

2.) He blesses your relationships with other periods you can always tell because the supernatural love and intimacy in possible without the Lord elevates the human relationship. It becomes a cord of 3. When I am away from the Lord, living and selfish sin, and being disobedient my relationships suffer.

3.) He makes your life significant by supernatural using you to love others and share him and his truth. He makes divine appointments that you would never experience on your own.

4.) He may bless you with little acts of kindness, delights and special moments as you live your life. You also get to enjoy the goodness of others prompted by Him. You just know in your heart that these blessings are from Him.

5.) Physical blessings of healing, health, and the ability to exercise enjoy exercise. And of course, mental health and intelligent thought.

6.) The grace to enjoy his creation, nature, beauty, and all of the arts.

7.) The resolution of differences in our relationships most often is a blessing from the Lord and impossible without His intervention.

8.) Correcting misconceptions, deception, and perceptions in our minds.

9.) Allowing us to have jobs or means to make a living that are satisfying and fulfilling, giving us purpose and significance.

10.) The continual process of sanctification – being made more like Jesus in His mind, His heart, His Spirit, His emotions, His purpose, His character, and His love.

And of course, many more!

Hope, forgiveness, our worth, prayer to change the world.

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Every Good and Perfect Gift

Every Good and Perfect Gift

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Marriage Mimic’s Our Spiritual Relationship with Christ

Marriage Mimic’s Our Spiritual Relationship with Christ

Marriage Mimic’s Our Spiritual Relationship with Christ

We see the promise of eternal bliss in an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, illustrated in marriage, (your relationship with your wife), parent -child, and friendship.

We know the possibility of a perfect relationship without spot, wrinkle, or blemish.

We see this in the Eternal and unending joy that the God Father and God the Son and Holy Spirit experienced prior to the interruption of the event of the cross when Jesus became sin for us, and God had to turn his head!! 

That perfect eternal relationship was broken. 

Marriage is probably the most important illustration and teaching tool of what God is after in terms of His relationship to us. What I have been noticing is the complexity of being born into and raised by sinful, broken people who are not only imperfect but have a nature to be rebellious towards the very One who created them.

Marriage Mimic’s Our Spiritual Relationship with Christ

After salvation the Holy Spirit, God Himself enters in to our being and we began to experience a higher plane in terms of our relationship with Him. (Even the possibility of a perfect relationship with a perfect being).

In order for us to have an intimate relationship with God Our nature has to reflect the nature of Christ and through the blood of Christ God sees us as alive, not dead in our sins.

Without the life of Christ in us we are just like zombies. 

It certainly wouldn’t work to have a relationship with a dead person, physically or spiritually. Marriage seems to mimic our spiritual relationship with Christ in many ways. As successful healthy marriage is very godly (if it follows the same path of pursuit spiritually), In practical terms, all of the same things that would interrupt our fellowship with God can also interrupt a marriage.

For example, we have a supernatural enemy who is against any harmony and love and will do anything to destroy marriage. We have our fleshly desires and our selfishness which continues to try to put ourselves on the throne of our lives and certainly is only in love with self.

We have a multitude of distractions that continually causes us to wander off of that very clear simple path.  We have all pressures dealing with our human body; aging, health, survival, and safety.

The challenge in both relationships are real and seemingly unending.  Our blessed Hope is to be free from all that would come between that oneness. 

The minute by minute work is pruning out anything that comes between that.

Thank God for GRACE that comes down from the Father of lights saving us continually from ourselves.

It is easier for a small child to love. They don’t focus on the bad in a person.

 

Marriage Mimic’s Our Spiritual Relationship with Christ

Author Randy Williams

Author Randy Williams

I have written other blog post on marriage and God’s relationship to us. “God Transforms His Bride”

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Inescapable Hope

Inescapable Hope

Inescapable Hope

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life. Proverbs 13:12.

 

As a sinner myself, I am personally and directly responsible for Jesus’s crucifixion; it is my sin that drove the nails through His hands, and it is my sin that brought God humiliation.

The torment of Christ is something that I deserved to experience for all eternity.

Jesus quoting Psalm 22 gives us a picture of Jesus’s spiritual state in that moment. Similar to how one quotes a movie or song to describe how one is feeling, Jesus quotes Psalm 22.

The Psalm itself describes tremendous suffering of various kinds yet ends with a steadfastness of faith that ensures trust in God. His last words, a quote of Psalm 31:5, He shows that He was unwavering in Hope.

This provides a terrifying form of suffering that the wicked must endure false hope.

If Jesus was not vindicated by the resurrection, then His Hope would have indeed been vain. Nonetheless, as an eternal Being experiencing hope deferred, He experienced spiritual sickness of an eternity of deferred hope.

Inescapable Hope

We all place hope in something.

A person who is not saved by the blood of Jesus Christ, too, has their hope in something. Perhaps it is hope in a better future, better living circumstances, or even the cessation of suffering via death.

Unfortunately, there is only one proper place to place one’s hope: The Incarnate Lord.

All other hopes are vain false hopes, and Hell is to experience an eternity of bitter deferred hope.

Even if someone were to try to abandon all hope as they enter the gates of Hell, they would still hope that the abandonment of hope might somehow produce a better existence, be it through a pseudo-death via eternal transcendental meditation or by holding to a hope of “making the best of it”.

Hope is an intrinsic part of the human experience, and the damned have an eternity of their vain hope burning in their stomachs by the logical necessity of conscious existence. 

Inescapable Hope

Jesus is the only true Hope, and only he can survive experiencing the full brunt of eternal deferred hope.

By Jesus being vindicated, so too was an eternity’s worth of deferred Hope fulfilled.

That is the same Hope that is offered to you and I through the Gospel of Christ.

How sure are you that you are placing your hope in the right thing? 

 

Inescapable Hope

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Delight Yourself in the Lord

Delight Yourself in the Lord

Delight Yourself in the Lord 

This blog post was written by a friend of mine whom I will leave anonymous.

 

“Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” — Psalms 37:4

 

How doggedly I pursue joy and pleasure; it drives my choices almost minute by minute.

Things that I do:

  • Watch TV. 
  • Converse with my wife or the kids.
  • Visit my grandchildren or look forward to their visits. 
  • Golf, practice golf, buy golf clubs and I think about golf. 
  • Work out for the pleasure of losing weight or being thin.
  • Work puzzles, I volunteer at church, and I go for walks.
  • I go to Dunkin’ Donuts for coffee.

These are just “neutral or wholesome” things I do for pleasure.

But I don’t want to consider all of my negative or unwholesome or sinful actions that I pursue for pleasure.

Are the wholesome pleasures and desires that “Psalms 37: 4” promise me if I delight myself in the Lord?

I think not!   

In fact, I think that conclusion is to misunderstand God’s Word here.

I believe my “focus objective” and dogged pursuit should be to pursue God Himself for pleasure.

Perhaps this one area is where I can be completely self-centered and seek personal pleasure while simultaneously obeying God and pleasing Him.

I needn’t even ask if it refers to unwholesome desires.

I expect that as I pursue God doggedly, even without the pursuit of pure or highest motives at the start, that I will over time, become more and more astounded at…

His glory, His love, His mercy, His compassion!

That I will begin to become so righteously enamored with Him that my pursuit for pleasure will become a pursuit of pleasure in Him.

At that moment I will have delighted so much in the Lord that He will have given meet the desires of my heart, which will be sweet, unhindered fellowship with Him.

So, what should I conclude?

I am free to choose, for my own pleasure, to pursue God relentlessly…

…and it will please Him.

 

Delight Yourself in the Lord 

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What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel of Christ?

What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel of Christ?

What about Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel or Christ?

I do not know about you but this this is a question that I have asked since I became a Christian. I know many others have asked the same thing but never really got a satisfactory answer.

Until now.

Dr. William Lane Craig, who is philosopher and theologian, has a short 5-minute video from Reasonable Faith that you can view at the bottom of this blog, but I will attempt to lay out his article in print here.

When Christians claim that Jesus is the only way to God, an objection is often raised: If Jesus is the only way to God, what about those who’ve never heard of Jesus? Is God unfair?

Are some people just unlucky – born at the wrong time and place in history?

 

They can’t possibly be saved … or can they?

What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel or Christ?
What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel or Christ?
What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel or Christ?

Is Jesus the only way of salvation? The only way to forgiveness? The only way to God?

Many people consider that Christ is the only way to God unacceptable and deeply offensive.

People ask what about those people that have never heard of the gospel or Jesus.

God is not unfair. The Bible says God wants all people to be saved.

Those that have not heard of Christ will not be judged on what they do not know but will be judged on what they do know.

What about those who have never heard of Christ know?

 

Two truths God has revealed to everyone everywhere.

 

1.) God Exists. In nature.

By observing the natural world around us.

 

2.) There is a Moral Law

Our conscience within us. Every one of us has a sense of right and wrong.

 

So those that have not heard of Christ can respond to the light they have been given through God (nature) and Moral Law (Conscience) if they turn to God for forgiveness and new life.

Just like people who lived prior to the time of Christ they can be saved through Christ even though they have not heard of Christ.

But what about people who don’t respond to God’s self-revelation through nature and conscience?

Granted, they freely separate themselves from God and God will not force them to believe if they do not want to.

But maybe they would have believed if only they had heard of Him?

Are they just victims of bad luck? Born at the wrong time and place in history?

According to the Bible, people are not born as a result of an accident, but that God decides where and when each person will live. So, it is possible that God so ordered the world anyone who would believe in Christ if they heard of Him, is born where he does hear about Him.

No one is lost through historical or geographical accident. Anyone who wants or would want to be saved will be saved.

Our eternal destiny truly lies in our own hands.

How about you?

“God made every nation of men… that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history… and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for Him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us.” Acts 17:26-27

 

What about Those Who Have Never Heard of the gospel or Christ?

A short 5-minute video from  Reasonable Faith

What About Those Who Have Never Heard of the Gospel or Christ?

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