Ephesians 1:3 - "According as he hath chosen us in him, before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love."
God knew us before we were born.
Ephesians 2:8,9 - "For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast."
So, we can thank God in Christ for liberating us from a "works based" salvation, ie. we are not working for acceptance or to earn our salvation.
Ephesians 2:10 - "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."
Yet, the revelation that salvation is not based on our works should not be interpreted as though the family of God is a "work-free zone." God has not liberated us from the realm of works, only from self-generated, religious "dead works."
As new creations, the Holy spirit dwells in us in an eternal relationship. His presence is a living reality, capable of speaking to us, inspiring and directing our lives to fulfill God-inspired works.
We are not saved by our works, but neither are we saved from works.
The truth is, we have been "created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." So we are saved by faith, but God has a destiny for us that requires that we work with Him to see it come to pass.
Pursuit is the thing that attracts heaven to bring us into that destiny.
But whatever God's destiny is for us, Paul says, "....work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure."
"God is at work in you." This is such an amazing reality. It does, indeed, inspire fear and trembling, yet it is also the source of great confidence. For if it is God who is working in us, He will soon be working through us. It will look like us working, but it will really be God manifesting His works through us.
Our Task is:
1. To seek Him.
2. To study His Word.
3. To minister to Him through prayer and worship.
4. Then we are to make his inner working visible through us.
This is exactly how Jesus revealed the Father. He said, "...my Father who lives in me does His work through me" (John 14:10).
I EXPERIENCE GOD-INSPIRED IDEAS, LOVE-ACTIVATED THOUGHTS RISING UP INTO MY MIND FROM THE REDEMPTIVE SPIRIT OF GOD.
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS WORKING THROUGH ME TO REVEAL JESUS.
I AM ALIVE TO BURN FOR GOD. I'M ALIVE TO MAKE HIM KNOWN.
I FOCUS ALL MY ENERGIES ON CARRYING HIS PRESENCE WITH EXCELLENCE - I CAN'T AFFORD TO HAVE A MOMENT IN MY LIFE WHEN CIRCUMSTANCES DISTRACT ME FROM TENDING THAT FIRE IN MY HEART.