“What is the source of quarrels and conflict?” (James 4:1)
We have plenty of conflict in our world today. Conflict over ideals. Conflict over the handling of those ideas. Conflict of who said what and who should have said something else.
When it all boils down, we just want our own way, huh?
Then how do we live?
This is the very time that we can be a great contrast to the world. Through Him, we can love one another. It’s obviously, not happening on the media or in our politics, but we’ve been given a greater grace. In other words, no matter what, we’ve been given the aid of divine favor.
In such a climate, encouragers will serve as magnets to the discouraged. While others are skeptical and distrusting, the Spirit-thriving individual will stand out like an anomaly. Pure Christianity is perfect suited for such a time as this.
We’ve talked about peace, joy and love. Now, let’s live it out. Let’s be more intent upon prayer than protest.
Find your strength deep within His Presence.
Brother Yun, a Chinese Christian evangelist who’s served several prison terms for the cause of Christ states this well:
“Once I spoke in the West and a Christian told me, “I’ve been praying for years that the Communist government in China will collapse, so Christians can live in freedom.” This is not what we pray! We never pray against our government or call down curses on them. Instead, we have learned that God is in control of both our own lives and the government we live under. Isaiah prophesied about Jesus, “The government will be on his shoulders” (Isaiah 9:6.)
God has used China’s government for his own purposes, moulding and shaping his children as he sees fit. Instead of focusing our prayers against any political system, we pray that regardless of what happens to us, we will be pleasing to God.
Don’t pray for the persecution to stop! We shouldn’t pray for a lighter load to carry, but a stronger back to endure! Then the world will see that God is with us, empowering us to live in a way that reflects his love and power.
This is true freedom!”
No matter how we voted, we must live united as Kingdom citizens. Jesus lived in the midst of a volatile political climate and yet there are very few places in which He even mentions a current event (see Luke 13:1-5; 31-32).
So here is my blessing upon you today:
“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).
“Have you ever noticed how ‘Bible women’ become more demanding and difficult as they age?”
My friend’s off-the-cuff question lingered with me for days. Although I’d never thought about it, I unfortunately knew plenty of instances in which this was true. My memories were filled with elderly Christian women who were never pleased. How could I assure that my own pathway led to grace, rather than grumbling? How could I hold onto the exact truth of His Word without becoming exacting toward my own way?
The religious leaders of Jesus’ day spent much time scrutinizing the Torah. With careful precision, they investigated each regulation given by Moses so that every action could be delineated as either black or white. They seated themselves “in the chair of Moses,” deciding much but obeying little (Matthew 23:2-3). How often do we “Bible women” of today pore over the Scriptures like the Pharisee’s, but remain unwilling to meet with Him face to face as our very Life (John 5:40; Colossians 3:4)? Indeed, the law was handed down on stone through Moses; but graciousness and truth generate into reality only through a Person (John 1:17). Becoming approachable and ageless unfolds as we daily approach the Ancient of Days.
In order to mature gracefully, we must regard His Word as the life where we rest, not just a book that we study. His Word is not merely a library of books to change your ideas, but a living force effecting change of your personality. These Scriptures we hold in our hands are not meant for mere knowledge. They bear witness of a Person — the very reality of Jesus Himself (John 5:39). In fact, Christ’s very Name is called the Word of God (Revelation 13:19)!
Nineteenth-century missionary Andrew Murray says, ”The whole… blessedness of waiting on God… is that we cannot for any time come into contact with Him without that life and power secretly, silently beginning to enter into us and bless us.” Oh, precious child of God — come daily before His Word as your very source of contact to the Living Person of your Lord. Pore over the Scriptures only in this way: allowing Him to secretly, silently pour Himself into your innermost being.