Reliance on God Equals Serenity

The book of Proverbs reminds us to rely on the Lord instead of ourselves (Proverbs 3:5). A point often overlooked is a dependence upon God brings us an inner serenity and an eternal future with our Savior. Given these points reliance on God calms the storms of life leading to a peaceful existence.

It’s difficult to abandon oneself to God. Everything inside ourselves wants to go it alone. This instinct to rely on our own limited power isn’t new. In fact, it started the moment sin entered humanity.

We understand this truth from Adam and Eve’s fall from God’s grace (Genesis 3). Even though, Satan persuaded them to disobey God (Genesis 3:4) it shows the consequences from relying on oneself.

But God’s mercy provides a way out (2 Peter 3:9).

My Experience With Self-reliance

I know the fruitless results from living life without leaning on Christ. When I use my understanding of how to live in a broken world, the outcome isn’t satisfying. This places me in a position where I collide with God’s word and live in disobedience.

In my experience living a self-searching lifestyle, the courage needed to overcome temptation stays elusive. I find myself unable to meet life’s terms without sin. My inability to live free from the bondage of sin coupled with my powerlessness over it leads me to resentment, fear, and ungodliness.

And I know without Christ’s strength it gets worse.

Every day we come up close with the dangers of separating ourselves from Christ. We live in a world riddled with examples of evil deeds with wicked intentions. These sinful global occurrences give evidence to a life anchored in action unacceptable with God.

Leaving Christ out of our decision making the door to more problems swings open. Even in our Christian walk, this unintentional approach can cause us to stumble.

On the positive side, our experience in trusting God leads us to refocus our efforts and seek Jesus divine wisdom. And once we shift our hearts over to His care a peace unlike any other enters our inner-being.

Glorifying God Comes From Christ-reliance

One of the most favorable actions God looks for is glorifying Him. It doesn’t take much of exertion to praise Christ. The Lord’s recipe for salvation includes the ingredients of humility, sincerity, and willingness to live in Christ. Those three spiritual actions lead to heaven.

On the other hand, self-sufficiency glorifies individuality an act of pride and distasteful to Christ.

The antidote for self-reliance is improving our relationship with Christ. Since God made Jesus His entry into salvation, then it becomes our responsibility to surrender our personal agendas and live in His purpose. It’s important to realize the more we rely on Jesus the greater our ability to live acceptable in God’s eyes.

What are your experiences with reliance on Christ?

 

Keeping Spiritually Balanced

 

Finding balance in life is challenging. The world places unrealistic expectations on our need to survive and meet its demands. Each of us struggles. No one is immune to the tribulations of living in a world full of uncontrollable circumstances. These predicaments are age-old perplexities and traced back to humanity great fall from God’s grace.

But a powerful solution is available. One greater than humanity. He is called God and through His mercy freedom from the bondage of worldly things emerges.

Christian balance is imperative in living on the narrow way.  Without God’s courage, we can’t stay faithful. Temptations are too strong for us and left to our limited power it’s impossible not to give into sin.

 
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When Jesus died, arose from the dead and ascended into heaven, God made our sanctification reality. And the Holy Spirit keeps us on the road to redemption. Our hope for eternal life rests upon God’s grace and our willingness to live in Christ.

Remember, it’s Christ who brings us spiritual equilibrium in living a saved life.

It’s easy to get to involved in personal activities and slight our daily devotion. Family, careers, friends and other endeavors prevent us from giving Christ our undivided attention. When we stay away from God, we are headed for troubles. We can’t afford to forget the sacrifice God made (the death of His Son) to bring us into His kingdom.

I know how to live isolated from God. When I fell from His grace, it took eleven years before He reopened His door. My complacent faith returned me back into the darkness of unremitting sin. A loneliness unlike any other entered my soul leaving me in constant spiritual turmoil.

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My unnecessary suffering caused by disobedience led me to utter desperation. Then one day I asked for His help, and He showed me mercy. I’m grateful Christ gave me a second chance. And today I do not allow my faith to be inactive. I give Him my best efforts each day. I’m not perfect but by surrendering myself over to His care, everything turns out according to His plan.

Wisdom knows God is the reason we live, and this makes placing personal choices above Him unwise. Faith is a verb and when active opens the door to a Christian strength stronger than God’s enemy. Real faith is setting aside personal by sacrificing individual time to seek God’s will. This faith is favorable to Christ and works under every life circumstances.

Christian action is our mightiest exertion in staying obedient to God. God’s word is full of instructions that need personal effort in living holy. There is a direct link between self-examination, prayer, and meditation. Each one of them brings us spiritual value but when practiced together an unshakeable faith develops, and we draw closer to Christ. It takes discipline and balance to incorporate this crucial God attributes.

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Don’t be mistaken, without an active faith life becomes unbearable and we live in constant sin. Our ancient ancestors the Israelites give testimony to a dead faith and the way God responds to disobedience. God’s truth never changes. Christ is the same today as when He walked on earth. No one can escape God. The Lord holds humans accountable for their actions and is fair in His judgments.

Real balance is relying on Christ in everything we do. Here is where we find the ability to place our personal agenda on the back burner and trust God in every personal affair. Our greatest challenge is letting go of the driver’s seat and let Christ guide us in the way God wants us to handle life’s terms. This approach stops us from failing and keeps us from becoming too elated or pitied over the problems sin creates in a broken world. Remember in times of uncertainty; pause asks God for direction and acts on His commands.

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The Irrefutable Proof Of God

God’s proof is irrefutable. No matter how a person tries to deny God, it doesn’t change the fact of His existence. The Lord left His mark on every continent. God designed His awesome creations as a way to notice His creations. God is the creator!

Even unbelievers are amazed by their natural surrounding but fail to give God glory and stay in darkness.

Many scientists use their intelligence to disprove God. They come up with theories to explain how life emerged. But their facts have limitations because they fail to understand the complexity of God’s incredible organized design. The debated Big Bang Theory and Darwinism is flawed. No one gives birth to themselves.

One of my friends shared with me an amazing story attesting to God’s invisible attributes. Chris’s sister sustained a horrific head injury. She fell down a flight of stairs causing severe skull trauma. Her physical condition was serious, and most people don’t recover without major problems.

The doctors shared with Chris and his family her poor prognosis. Those physicians became surprised because she made a full recovery with no speech, cognitive or mobility problems. And because of her miraculous healing, it drew other well-respected doctors to witness her unexplained recovery. These men of medicine marveled over her extraordinary outcome from a devastating accident.

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Here we see how God created the human body with an ability to heal itself. Now if doesn’t prove God as a Creator, then I sorry for you. Scientists find themselves baffled over this unbelievable cleverness of God’s unique planned design.

The greatest experience with God is His remarkable Living Spirit. Once God saves a soul, then He showers the individual with an undeniable love. This astonishing awakening to His presence leaves no doubt since nothing the world offers matches God’s grace.

Connecting with God isn’t our choice. Remember, God saved us by His grace. This is a special privilege not given to everyone. When God opens the door to His kingdom through Christ, then we know He is the sole Creator of everything. Our eyes become full of spiritual light, and we understand the difference between physical and spiritual death. This wisdom isn’t by mistake but from Christ.

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Another impressive God consciousness is the peace we find in Christ. Adam and Eve’s disobedience caused everyone to experience sin. And this real and painful truth can’t be denied.

No one is without sin.

God wants to love His creations and provided faith as a way back into His grace. God designed everyone with the same emotional DNA and Christ relieves us from our darkened souls. Our devotion to Christ gives testimony to God as the Creator because without salvation freedom from the bondage of sin stays elusive. We are blessed to experience God’s mercy!

God makes His existence known. He didn’t limit us to those visible signs where we see His creations. He allows us to experience His Living Spirit. This inner-connectedness makes living in a world riddled with corruption a temporary existence since our spiritual inheritance is in heaven.

It doesn’t matter if you are a new believer or a seasoned veteran; we agree God isn’t dead. He is alive in us with Christ, and our salvation bears witness to God’s creations.

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Enjoying God’s Natural Surroundings

Everything God made is incredible. He is an excellent creator, and we are blessed to witness His marvelous creativity. Even though original sin caused us suffering, He surrounded us with a stunning natural setting appealing to our eyes.

Nature is full of God’s remarkable imprints. No matter what natural setting you prefer, God created it for your enjoyment. Finding joy in God’s other creations isn’t by accident but by His design. Our Father left us an abundance of other creatures, mountains, oceans and forests for pleasure.

It’s tough for me to narrow down a single choice from God’s enormous creations. I enjoy watching nature, and it always lifts my spirits. Sunsets and harvest moons are pleasant to experience bringing joy to my day and night. Dolphins are fascinating. When I’m around mountains, it captures my attention, and I enjoy their incredible scenery.

Evolutionists try their best to discount God the Creator. Charles Darwin had doubts but published his theory of evolution. Random chance and mutations are his claims for life.

Even if Darwin had the advances in today’s modern science, it still doesn’t explain the organized design from living organisms. The complexity of DNA and cell development are beyond human comprehension, and God hasn’t shown humans everything. He has mysteries unknown to us. And it’s in His creation of nature that has left His mark on every continent and body of water.

The evidence of God is everywhere. He allows us to enjoy our stay on earth by exposing us to supernatural powers. Every flower, insect, creature and cosmic events prove His existence. Isn’t God terrific!

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. (Genesis 1:1)

Are you enjoying God’s creations?

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The Wisdom of Fearing God

Fearing God is found throughout the Bible. The Old and New Testaments tells us to fear God. And for good reason. Contained within God’s Book are many examples of the way he disciplines disobedience.

God wrath isn’t subtle. He gives us every opportunity to repent. The Old Testament is full of God’s patience in allowing the Israelites to change their sinful ways and live in obedience. The Lord was fair with them before acting on His judgment for their defiance. And God has given us their recorded history to remind us the penalty for disobedience.

When God delivered Christ to the world, this changed the way He deals with unfaithful actions. Jesus is God’s last covenant with humanity and without believing in Christ, no one will enter heaven. Once a believer places faith in Christ; then the wisdom of fearing God becomes understood.

The fear of God isn’t one that pushes us away from Him. It draws us closer to Christ because the knowledge of God’s judgment becomes real. Christ is the one who teaches us the way God will handle unbelievers, and the Book of Revelation is the blueprint to God’s final judgment. Don’t be mistaken; everyone one will face Christ’s verdict.

The good news is fearing God paves the way for our eternal inheritance. God shows us through Christ the rewards for following His commands. Our Father makes sure we have a place in heaven. We are fortunate to be chosen by God!

Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil. (Proverbs 3:7)

Do you fear God?

Working for the Divine Craftsman

We are privileged. Chosen by God to work for Christ. This divine honor has eternal treasures. Christ paid our price and freed us from sin. Our labor (faith) allows us to experience God’s grace. And for as long as we stay faithful our inheritance in heaven is secure.

The joy of salvation is losing our lives for Christ (Matthew 16:25). It’s in Christ’s body we enjoy living in obedience to God. Christ is our Master Craftsman showing us the spiritual tools necessary to building our eternal foundation.

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In God’s toolbox, we find the tools needed in fixing our broken lives. God’s specialty is providing the precise Christian instruments in repairing the damage sin causes to humans. And the one handing us them is Christ. Without Christ, we can’t diagnose the problem.

In Apostle Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians we find an indispensable message for becoming Christ’s workers.

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them,” (Ephesians 2:10).

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God united us with Christ making us acceptable in performing His work. God doesn’t force Himself on humans; He uses His chosen ones to make the world see His hands working for the good of humanity.

If I’m not willing to leave my comfort zone and do good for those I want to avoid; then I must examine if I’m working for Christ. I can’t be selective because everyone is God’s creation. Christ reminds me He came to save sinners. It’s tough doing right for selfish people, but the rewards from God are incredible.

God created good deeds to lead us away from sin. He planned for us to show the world His holiness by using righteousness as an attraction to the gracefulness of a spiritual life.

It’s the light of Christ that shines the spotlight on those we are to help. Often we fail to see them because we are too busy or look the other way so we won’t become bothered by the countless people begging for help. Christ, Himself tells us not to be blinded to anyone in need of aid (Matthew 25:35-40).

Working for Christ means making personal sacrifices that are tough but necessary. When God saved me, my life changed. He granted me apprenticeship into Christ’s kingdom and now Jesus is showing me the blueprints of discipleship.

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God leads me to a way of life where unconditional giving outweighs my concerns about how the recipient will use the help. I take the action and leave the results of Christ’s hands. I’m not perfect and fail but the moment I’m willing to act God is pleased.

Each day we awaken to a new opportunity to stay on God’s roll call and receive our daily bread. Christ knows we won’t have perfect attendance since God understands we become weak in faith. But the moment we become willing and report for work then Christ finds a spot on God’s roster. No matter how sinful we become working for Christ will always nurse us back to spiritual health.

Are you working for Christ?

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A Troubled Celebration

Today, the United States of America celebrates its independence from Great Britain. Two hundred forty years ago they ratified their Declaration of Independence. They paid a heavy price (war) to break free from English rule. This wasn’t easy and took many human casualties to win against their mighty opponent. Their relentless pursuit of freedom secured the victory.

I’m grateful to live in the United States of America. My entire life this country has allowed me to make personal choices with little government interference. I know other countries don’t rule the same way, and this shows me how fortunate I am to live in a nation with good intentions. Even though the USA has problems, it still attracts people to its borders.

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I try to avoid discussing what’s wrong with our nation, but many of my family and friends ask me my views. So, I took this opportunity to share them with you.

The founding fathers of the USA incorporated a set of Christian standards as the way to rule their citizens. Their faith in God helped shape the way this country conducted themselves. They wanted to show their citizens a new and improved government where expressing spiritual beliefs matter.

It’s sad but over time the U.S. moved away from acknowledging God to a nation anchored in secularism. This subtle shift started when they overtook the Native Americans (Indians) and stripped them their freedom. Civil war, capitalism, mistreatment of citizens (African Americans) and liberalism give evidence to the spiritual decline it shows, and a nation centered in ungodliness.

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In Biblical times we see how God treated nations who reject His rule. The  Old Testament gives excellent examples of God’s justice. Many ancient empires came into contact with God’s wrath. Egypt, Assyria, Babylonia and Persia couldn’t defeat God and experienced His mighty power (Psalm 9:17). And now the U.S.A. is showing God the same rejection.

God’s enemy is cunning and uses leaders to help separate people from Christ. Unbelievers are blinded to the devil ways because they live in spiritual darkness and believe government can solve cultural problems. Their deception keeps them from knowing God. This outlook is shallow since it blocks them from understanding Christ solves humanity’s problems.

The United States has forgotten their roots. Abortion (murder), same-sex marriages and transgender behavior are accepted and glorified. Racial hatred, incarceration of innocent people and poverty continue to make national headlines reminding us the ungodliness this nation has become. These are the facts and no matter how much someone denies them the truth stays the same. No country can change without God.

Don’t misunderstand me. God uses this nation to do well, and I’m grateful to notice the kind acts it shows. But my salvation isn’t contingent on governments. I must stand firm on my faith and live according to Christ’s will or face spiritual death. This means sharing my faith and help spread the Gospel. Every time I live in God’s purpose, the rewards are remarkable. Christ is amazing!

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The Lost Meaning of Thanksgiving

Have you noticed?
 
Thanksgiving has changed.
Decades ago this Holiday meant a time for our country (USA) to stop and give thanks for the nation. Most businesses closed their doors so they could spend time with family and express gratitude for each other.
I remember a time when walking into a store and saw a big display of Thanksgiving goods. Every section of the store had many choices to buy Thanksgiving nick knacks. I felt connected with Thanksgiving.
This tradition still goes on, but it has lost its punch.
 
Today the misuse of Christmas has taken preference. Black Friday starts on Thanksgiving night. Stores are displaying Christmas stuffs before Thanksgiving Day. Cities are decorating their streets with Christmas lights the week before Thanksgiving.
It’s not surprising this change has occurred. The USA has gone astray from the spiritual principles their founding fathers set for guidance. They included God in separating themselves from British rule.
 
In the Bible, we are taught to be watchful. It warns us how the evil one uses the world to destroy the godliness of the human soul. Satan uses family destruction is against God. And the United States government has opened the door for the devil to play havoc in the family.
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Abortion (1973) and same-sex marriages (2015) are facts of the unholy direction the United States has taken. That is a sign of how the Devil uses man laws to abolish the family sovereignty of God. Those laws have destroyed human life (Exodus 20:13) and God’s intended purpose of marriage (Genesis 2:24). And no human power can reverse their devastating consequences. It’s up to God.
 
Remember, we are God’s temple (1 Corinthians 6:19). We are His gift and cannot afford to live outside His commandments. The narrow way is tough to follow for it takes abiding in Christ to stay on heaven’s path. God’s wrath is real. Sodom and Gomorrah reduced to ashes and the great flood of Noah’s generation wiped out the world population (2 Peter 2:5-6). God’s verdict to disbelief is eternal damnation.  
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God has blessed me with a family full of love. Each year we gather in Carrollton, Georgia to celebrate Thanksgiving. My family isn’t small. I have four brothers and four sisters. Mom now eighty-six, and dad gone ten years. Six of us will be in attendance along with many nieces and nephews.
 
Preparation for such a large gathering has many challenges. My sister-in-law is terrific for she prepares most of the meal. Her selfless service is wonderful watch. And I can see God working in her spirit. I’m grateful to be a witness of God guiding her life.
 
As Christians, we know it’s imperative to place God above everything. We understand giving thanks to God is daily. Our walk with Christ is an hour by hour commitment and not reserved for times of emergencies. Faith without works is fruitless and a setup for disaster.
 
May Christ be your guiding Light in these dark times.

 

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Our Holy Purpose
What is our holy purpose? Obedience? An active faith? Spreading the Gospel?
Those are a few of God’s attributes and essential to our Christian existence. Without them, we stop growing in Christ’s image. They are the byproducts of God’s divine plan. But they are secondary to the Lord’s most precious desire-glorification
Our primary purpose is to glorify God through walking in the footprints of Christ.
This is our top priority and the focus of eternal life. God delivered Christ to the world and completed His eternal plan. The Lord made Christ the entrance to His kingdom.
Our eternal destination rests upon building an unshakable trust in Christ. This means seeking the Messiah with our minds, bodies, and souls. Lukewarm faith avail us nothing, but abiding in Christ glorifies God, and we become sanctified.
It’s impossible to worship God without the cleansing Christ brings to our sinful lives. Jesus is the bread of life. We cannot afford to miss the mark for God is watching the way we seek Christ as our savior.              
We must glorify Him or face eternal damnation. This may sound harsh, but God rejects those who mistreat Him. The Bible is full of God’s justice to those who don’t give Him glory.
In the Old Testament and during Noah’s generation the power of God’s glory is displayed. It took the Lord’s wrath to rectify the wickedness of that era. Evilness had reached an epidemic where God had to take drastic action. Here, God showed Noah His mighty justice.
The Lord took away the life of every human except Noah’s. In those times, Noah’s faith glorified God, and the Lord used Him to repopulate the earth.
It’s hard to imagine God did such a thing. He did, and the Book of Genesis recorded the great flood. The Lord made sure that future humans understood the penalty for not giving Him glory. God makes glorifying Him imperative to our salvation.  
Another excellent biblical account backing up God’s displeasure is when the Lord called on Moses. The Lord gave Pharaoh several chances to show Him glories by releasing His people. God took away the life of Pharaoh’s son before he unwilling succumbed to God’s glory. Either by choice or consequence, God’s always gets His glory.
The greatest example of God’s glory is in the New Testament. It came in His New Covenant through His resurrected Son Jesus Christ. Here, God rose Christ from the dead and showed His glory to the real believers.
Most of those people witnessing Christ painful death didn’t realize God’s display of Glory. They watched Christ shedding His blood waiting for a sign, but didn’t understand the real meaning of His sacrifice. Even Christ’s faithful followers had trouble grasping it, but when Christ rose from the dead, they saw God’s glory was at hand.
The moment Christ spoke and showed Himself to Mary Magdalene God’s glory is fulfilled. She knew it was Jesus and rejoiced in His name. And from this point forward Christ became the way to glorify God.
I try my best to worship God daily. To live my life in Christ’s sovereignty is a challenge. Every day I try to steal God’s glory and my spirit suffers. It happens in subtle ways, and the villain is pride. During the day Christ steps in and reminds me of this and gives me a chance to humble myself.
I’m grateful to have the opportunities Christ presents in correcting my wrong behavior. The “Spirit of truth” makes my suffering well worth the pain, for I know it’s for my good. And I shed a tear when I absorb what the Lamb of God did the day He died. I have a long way to go on staying in God’s spirit, but His promise of heaven motivates me to continue seeking. 
A life centered in Christ radiates to the world the essence of God’s glorious attributes. In our private relationship with God, we are given an unconditional abundance of love, forgiveness and selflessness. Then, as the result of abiding in Christ the courage to take those same holy principles to believers and unbelievers glorifies God in our righteousness.

The list of ways to glorify God is limitless. Christ holds the keys and will unlock those ways to the faithful. Each day is a fresh start. An opportunity to give God glory. Let’s unite and continue giving God, His precious desire-glorification


The Simplicity of God’s Will 

Sometimes it’s easy to overlook the simplicity of God’s will. Our human tendency is to complicate matters. We wonder if we’re on the right track or question our worthiness.

God created us out of unconditional love. The Lord finds us worthy enough to be saved. And He simplified His will by introducing His Son Jesus Christ to the world.

God made salvation available to anyone who will believe in Jesus as the Savior. Once someone picks up their cross and walks with Christ, then God’s will comes to life. Without establishing faith in Christ, the door to God’s mansion is closed. (John 14: 1-6)   

When Adam and Eve sinned, it damaged their interaction with God. His penalty for their disobedience excluded humanity from the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3). The Lord didn’t give up on them and showed His mercy by teaching them repentance. God’s grace saved them from the evil one.

It’s easy to find God’s will. The first thing He wants is being placed above everything. Nothing less is acceptable for God’s judgment is harsh on unbelievers. The Bible speaks God’s truth, and many examples of His corrections are recorded.

Noah, Moses, David, and Habakkuk are the testimonies attesting to God’s wrath on disbelief. They saw God’s righteous justice and wrote of those events so we can understand the Lord’s judgment on disobedience. 

Our ancient ancestors of the Old Testament lived in and out of God’s favor. The Lord practiced patience with them and used Prophets to help guide His children into eternal light. Their long periods of captivity and God’s merciful interventions wasn’t enough to convince them to change. Lack of faith and their inability to repent paved the way for God’s next and final plan.

God activated His final plan for salvation in the New Testament. The Lord ended prophecies and introduced His Son the Lord Jesus Christ. God narrowed His will to one crucial act of faith: abiding in Christ.

Apostle John’s Gospel simplifies the truth of abiding in Christ. Here is where the Messiah explained to His Disciples the truth of God’s will. In John’s 14th chapter, he wrote the command Christ made for entry into God’s kingdom.

Christ told Apostle Thomas this: “… I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14: 6) Verse 6 is precise and easy to understand. Here God identifies Christ as His eternal will. God leaves salvation in Christ’s hands and eliminates any confusion on His everlasting plan.

Our Father is incredible and by believing in Christ, we are anointed by the Holy Spirit (John 14: 15-18). Here God’s overwhelming presence is obvious. Our Father never leaves us guessing for no other feeling or emotion matches His living spirit. The Holy Spirit makes God undeniable.

Experiencing God’s will of love comes from loving Christ. Jesus unfolded the essence of God’s love and the Gospel of John highlights the action necessary to receive this gift. Our love for Christ unites Him and us with God (John 14: 23-24). Then we are given an unshakable foundation for everlasting life.

Another manifestation of God’s love from abiding in Christ is becoming friends of Jesus. Christ told the Disciples this: “No longer do I call your servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you,” (John 15: 15).

God wants us to be friends of Jesus. The characteristics of real friendship comprise love, trust, faith and selfless giving. Those spiritual gifts produce a fruitful partnership and can withstand the storms of life. God is glorified when we become Christ’s friend.

The inner peace I have from abiding in Christ is exhilarating. Christ’s serenity comforts my soul and keeps me humble. God has provided me hope in times of distress and I love being corrected from my disobedience. Christ has changed my life and made it whole. I’m no longer afraid to lose my life in Him.

On our own and without Christ our lives are meaningless.  God’s will is centered in Christ. Humility is the cornerstone to Christ’s wisdom, and this provides us with the knowledge of God’s will. The light of God brings us a brighter future.  

How has Christ changed your life?