Tag Archives: Spirit

Love, Joy, and Peace

Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness”

This devotional comes from Greg Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship.

The future is something we all should be thinking about, because we need to plan ahead. Not only do we need to think about what we will do in this life, but also what we will do for all eternity.

An extensive survey conducted in the United States by a leading polling agency distributed questionnaires to people of various ages and occupations, asking, “What are you looking for most in life?” When the results were compiled, the analysts were surprised. Most expected those who were polled to say they wanted to achieve certain materialistic goals. But the top three things that people wanted in life were love, joy, and peace—in that order.

Galatians 5:22 tells us the fruits of the Spirit include love, joy, and peace. Thus, the very things people are looking for today can be found in a relationship with God. Yet some have given up on these things. They say, “Love, joy, and peace? That’s a pipe dream of flower children. Give me a break. You are not going to find love, joy, and peace in this world . . . not in the real world I live in.”

Would that describe how you feel right now? That isn’t the way life ought to be. In a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, we are promised not only life beyond the grave, but a life that is full and rich and worth living on this earth. Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10). Jesus gives us life with purpose and, of course, life with the hope of Heaven.

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Doubt, Reach Out

JesusChristLove1-e1393989333893Luke 24:36-40 “As they were talking about these things, Jesus himself stood among them, and said to them, ‘Peace to you!’ But they were startled and frightened and thought they saw a spirit. And he said to them, ‘Why are you troubled, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.’ And when he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet.”

What are those things bringing chaos or doubt into your life? The ultimate doubt and chaos for Jesus’ disciples was “what’s next”. How many times have we tried to “give it up”, “let it go” or “get over it” one for time?  What’s next?

Jesus tells is disciples not to be troubled and not to doubt. He simply showed himself and said “touch me”.

Today is an opportunity to reach out and experience His grace, mercy, love and care. Doubt? Reach out.

Renovation Time

 ... and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:24

renovation

The new self refers to the renovated nature. Like a house interior that’s been renovated. Same house new inside. The change is so great, that there is no impropriety in speaking of one who has experienced it as “a new person.” We has new feelings, principles, and desires. We have laid aside our old principles and practices, and, in everything that pertains to moral character, we are new.

This is not a small change. It is not a mere change of the outward condition. No, no new paint job or dry wall patch here.  It’s not just being brought from the world into the church, and being baptized.

Our body is still the same; the intellectual structure of our mind is the same; but there has been a change in our principles and feelings which challenge us. The interior of our house has been completely redone.

God works in us through His Spirit to make us like Him.

You’re at War?

2 Corinthians 10:3-6 “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.”
We are already at war spiritually. Constantly contending in our minds, we battle over thoughts and emotions which flow through them. The enemy often attacks by bringing up issues from our past. Failures, regrets, wounds, and traumas all have the potential to drag us down into doubt, darkness and despair. Our tremendous challenge is not to respond to these memories with old destructive thought patterns. Our victory lies in responding to these thoughts and feelings.
While we don’t necessarily ignore thoughts and feelings from the past, it is vital that we don’t allow them to control our souls and emotions, but that we take them captive through prayers and declarations inspired by our spiritual mind.
The battle over past issues is won we  takes authority over their meaning, purpose and definition in our lives with Jesus on the throne of our hearts and minds, everything in our past is brought under His authority and works together for our good!

Camouflage

1 Corinthians 2:10-12 “these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God.”

I’m fascinated by the way animals camouflage themselves in the wild. There is a fish in the Pacific called the Merlet’s Scorpionfish (Neat name for sure!). Scorpionfish blend perfectly into one particular type of coral. You can be staring at this coral and thinking to yourself, “My, oh my, that’s unique and beautiful,” and you would have no idea you were looking at a fish.
There’s an old phrase that my wife loves to use: “It’s hidden in plain sight.” This refers, of course, to something that is apparently obvious but that people still miss. If you know there is a fish in the photograph of the coral, you’re better able to spot it. It’s still tricky, but, eventually, you’ll see it—because you’ve been tipped off that the fish is there.
The apostle Paul is saying in this verse that the same is true with God. No one knows what’s really going on inside God’s mind unless He tips us off and reveals it through His Word and/or His Spirit.  How does He go about doing that?
What we need has already been given to us: the Spirit.
Everything you need to live your abundant life you already have. He’s already given it to you. It may be “hidden in plain sight,” but you know it’s there. The Holy Spirit is the Teacher who wants to show it to you.

Encouraging Leader

God has chosen you to lead the way as an Encouraging Leader.
Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”
2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”