"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast." - Ephesians 2:8-9
Once we have received this "gift" of eternal life through the Blood of Jesus and the regeneration of the Holy Spirit, we will begin to face choices that affect our rate of spiritual growth, as well as our position in the eternal ages before us.
And He said to them all, "If any man will [willingly choose to] come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me." Luke 9:23
Each of us who desires to personally know and serve the Lord must first make this life-changing decision to "take up our cross." which is to come to understand and begin carrying out our calling in Christ. When we willingly do this, our present relationship to the Lord, and also our eternal position in the ages to come, will be greatly affected.
If we accept this challenge ("If anyone will come after Me"), the taking up of our cross must become a practical, daily reality in our lives. Many do not realize, or take seriously, the tremendous value of all that our Lord will make available to us as a result of the "willing" submission of our lives to walking in our calling in Christ.
OUR PERSONAL IDENTITY IN CHRIST
Understanding our Christ identity is essential in order to efficiently carry out God’s purpose for our life. .
We are called to succeed in advancing the Kingdom of God on earth -- to walk in overcoming victory: "...because as He is, so are we in this world" (1 John 4:17)
As we come to realize our identity in Christ, in Colossians 2:9 we discover this central fact concerning Christ Jesus: "For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." Since we are one with Christ Jesus that fullness of the godhead dwells in us.
Our outlook on life is changed as we contemplate: "And you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power." (Colossians 2:10)
"You are complete," which means we lack nothing at all, as we abide in Him. Abiding in Christ and allowing Him to flow freely out of us enables us to function with the greatest degree of success, thus furthering God’s Kingdom in the earth, bearing fruit that remains.
Matthew 7:8 -- "For everyone who keeps on asking receives; and he who keeps on seeking finds; and to him who keeps on knocking, the door will be opened." AMP
We must ask, knock, and seek until we come to understand and begin to carry out God’s purpose for our life (our Calling in Christ) Only then can we be the regular recipients of God’s favor on our life.
Romans 6:11,13,14 - "Think of yourselves as dead to sin but alive to God in union with Christ Jesus. Nor must you surrender any part of yourselves to sin, to be used for wicked purposes. Instead, give yourselves to God, as men who have been brought from death to life, and surrender your whole being to Him to be used for righteous purposes....you do not live under law but under God's grace."
The yielded life is essential for us to walk in the fullness of God's PURPOSE for our lives -- as we empty ourselves of the things we hold on to, allowing Him to reveal to us our calling in Christ and have His perfect work within us.
"To him who is overcoming, I will give him to eat from the hidden manna, and I will give to him a white stone, and upon the stone a new name written, that no one knew except him who is receiving [it]." - Revelation 2:17 Young's Literal Translation
The promise of the Lord is "to him that overcomes." As we overcome our "self-life" through willing obedience to the leading of the Holy Spirit, He will bring into God's purpose for our life and experience the "good land," -- as we are prepared to bear fruit that remains for the harvest.
ALBERT FINCH MINISTRY
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