Theme for 2018
WE ARE THE ARMY OF GOD &
WE ARE ARMED AND DANGEROUS!
“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (NIV)
This Week’s Thought – January 14, 2018
“Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for this is how their fathers treated the false prophets.” Luke 6:26 (NKJV)
When you choose to follow Jesus not everyone will speak well of you. This comes with the territory of commitment to Christ. It should not alarm you, since this is how Jesus was treated. The crowds praised Him for His authoritative teaching, but there always seemed to be a jealous group lurking about. His authentic life condemned their hypocrisy. His clear teaching made the teaching of the religious leaders look complex and controlling.
Not being well spoken of is part of the cup we must drink as a disciple of Christ. If you try to please everyone you run the risk of pleasing no one. People who fall into the trap of trying to please people, become anxious, fearful and exhausted. Pleasing all people all the time is not possible—as a matter of fact…it is futile! You cannot do enough to satisfy some people.
“You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?” “We can,” they answered.” (Matthew 20:22)
Why are some people chronic complainers? Their insecurity craves attention, their pride demands attention and their pain requires attention. Their hurt has caused them to lose perspective and unfortunately, you may become the object of their frustration. But by God’s grace you can love them through this unsettling time. You know better.
You can give them what they have denied you. Your patience and forgiveness will go a long way in loving them to Jesus. It is your life that validates your words during times of duress. Do not be surprised when others do not speak well of you. They may not have a context to understand, because they may not have Christ.
What does matter is what God thinks about you. Thankfully, by faith, He accepts you in Christ. When the Lord affirms your place in life, you can rest assured. Do not waffle when the conflicting opinions of others urge you their way. Your stability is in God. He is your rock and refuge. His validation matters most, so rest in Him and do not react to the unrealistic expectations of others. Only you, led by the Holy Spirit, can define God’s expectations!
There is a good chance someone will not understand your faith walk and give you grief. Doing the right thing may cost you a relationship or financial reward. Your obedience to Christ may draw out the firestorm of criticism from some, or it may be their subtle rejection that stings. Either way, pray for and love them regardless of their unfounded words. God knows, that’s all that really matters. Listen for His well-spoken words instead!
“He received honor and glory from God the Father when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” (2 Peter 1:17)
Application: Do you value the well-spoken words of Jesus more than those around you that quite possibly you are seeking too much to please or befriend?
Prayer of reflection you might pray this week: “Heavenly Father, by faith keep me focused on Your work for Your glory. This world is filled with so many temptations, distractions, and frustrations. I know that when I turn my thoughts away from You and Your Word, I suffer; but when I turn my thoughts and my prayers to You, I am safe and able to accomplish Your will for my life. Direct my path Lord, and allow me to discover and know Your will for me. I await Your voice. This is my prayer in the matchless, wonderful and compassionate name of Jesus, Amen!”
“And then God answered: “Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run. This vision-message is a witness pointing to what’s coming. It aches for the coming—it can hardly wait! And it doesn’t lie. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It’s on its way. It will come right on time.” Habakkuk 2:2-3 (MSG)
Yours in Christ, Pastor King