Now that the whole hustle and bustle of the merry seasons are over, and the majority of the world is rudely being whipped back to the reality of life, its time for some much needed self reflection. Though the reality is that in God’s calendar, now is actually not a new year that He intended for us. According to His calendar, the new year is signified by the springing up of new life after the long winter, and is called spring. So, as you can see, the father’s new year actually has a purpose, but I digress. Lets get back on point, since this is a new year for most, its time to get to work.
In John 8:31-32, it tells us that if you believe on Christ, and continue in his word, then and only then can we be considered his disciples. That means the reverse is true, we are not considered his disciples if we are not continuing in his word. In order to know the truth, we must continue in his word and in order to be free we have to know the truth. Freedom from what? The shackles of religion, man made doctrine, traditions of man etc. With that freedom comes responsibility, what are we going to do with what we know? If we know the truth we would continue in the word. How do we continue in his word? Matthew 16:24-25 tells us we are to deny ourselves, carry our crosses and follow Christ. To deny ourselves means we no longer do the things we want to do, but recognize them to be of no benefit to the kingdom growth, no matter how good it makes us feel. By taking up our cross, we are putting our sins on that cross, washing our hands of those sins and turning away from them. As true disciples of Christ, this is considered our reasonable (absolute very least) service – Romans 12 :1-2. Our reasonable service and duty is to obey the written word of God by daily transforming our mind to be in alignment with His, as we put what does not belong on the alter.
While self reflecting, its important to remember this warning given to us by Christ. In Matthew 16: 26-27, Christ rhetorically asks what the benefit would be for a man to live on this earth for as many appointed years that he has, only to lose his soul at the end of it all? What are we exchanging our souls for? Are we exchanging our souls for what the world is giving us, forgetting that the world has absolutely nothing to offer? Is our time and energy being put into the world with nothing to show for it? Christ says he will come back with his angels and reward everyone according to their works. The question therefore is what are you going to be rewarded for? I urge you to take as long as you need here to answer this question, because its your honest, soul searching answer that will guide your steps for the rest of your life! James 1:21-23 categorically tells us that we have to be doers of the word and not just hearers. We can no longer hear the word, but then pass the buck to someone else as if it is their responsibility and not ours. We cannot serve two masters, so we either believe the bible or we don’t, its that plain and simple! As James 2:17 tells us, faith without works is dead. How can we say we have faith, yet do no works? If we have faith, we will believe what God says, roll up our sleeves and get to work!
Let’s get down to some true talk, and the issue the majority of us have and need to overcome. Firstly, we expect to be warmly received by everyone. Well, sorry to be the bearer of bad news and break it to you…that will not always be the case. However, well received or not, does not give us the excuse to get angry to the point of wanting to destroy a mans life, neither does it give us the right or excuse to stop doing the work. In Luke 9:51-56, we see that Christ was not well received, and his disciples James and John were ready to rain fire down on the so called culprits. However, Christ immediately rebuked them saying theirs was not to destroy mens lives. Likewise us, we being Christ’s disciples don’t destroy mens lives or behold grudges. Secondly, we unfortunately indulged in a double helping of lies from satan, and have been led to believe we have all the time in the world. Therefore, we figure we have to get our lives in order first, get the career, the marriage, the kids, the kids education, their weddings, their kids education and so on and so forth out of the way first, then we will have time to do the work. Ha! and good luck is all I say to that! Why does something else always have to come ahead of what Christ is telling us to do? The bible calls those that put their hands to the plough and look back, unfit for the kingdom – Luke 9:57-62. The kingdom comes first!
In conclusion, there is plenty to be done, but very few willing to do it. We have the homeless with us daily (not only in December) that need food, shelter and raiment -Isaiah 1:17. We have our youth that are void of the knowledge of the truth and need to be taught – Deuteronomy 11:19. The sick need to be healed – Matthew 10:8. Our brothers and sisters need encouragement and prayers so we don’t get weary along the way – 1 Thessalonians 5:11. The work is plenty! Consider what you have been exchanging your soul for, and what you now want to be rewarded for, then, roll up your sleeves and get to work!
Till the next time, shalom and blessings.