To Be A Christian

4 05 2011

“To me to live is Christ”
(Apostle Paul, Philippians 1:21)

To be a Christian is nothing less than to have the glorified Christ living in us in actual presence, possession and power. It is to have Him as the Life of our life in such a way and to such a degree that we can even say as Paul did, “To me to live is Christ.” To be a Christian is to grow up into Christ in all things: it is to have that divine seed which was planted in our innermost spirit blossom out into a growing conformity to His perfect Life. To be a Christian is to have Christ the Life of our minds, our hearts, our will, so that it is Christ thinking through us, living through us, willing through us. It is increasingly to have no life but the Life of Christ within us filling us with ever-increasing measure.

–Ruth Paxson, Life On The Highest Plane

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Malicious Ministry

19 04 2011

 20“For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself is doing; and the Father will show Him greater works than these, so that you will marvel. 21“For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son also gives life to whom He wishes. 22“For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, 23so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.”
(John 5:20-23)

“We slander God by our very eagerness to work for Him without knowing Him.”
–Oswald Chambers





O Love Divine, How Sweet Thou Art!

18 04 2011

O love divine, how sweet thou art!

When shall I find my willing heart

All taken up by thee?

I thirst, I faint, I die to prove

The greatness of redeeming love,

The love of Christ to me.

Stronger His love than death or hell;

Its reaches are unsearchable;

The first born sons of light

Desire in vain its depths to see;

They cannot reach the mystery

The length, and breadth, and height.

God only knows the love of God;

O that it now were shed abroad

In this poor stony heart!

For love I sigh, for love I pine;

This only portion, Lord, be mine,

Be mine this better part.

O that I could forever sit

With Mary at the Master’s feet;

Be this my happy choice;

My only care, delight, and bliss,

My joy, my heaven on earth, be this

To hear the Bridegroom’s voice.

O that, with humbled Peter, I

Could weep, believe, and thrice reply,

My faithfulness to prove.

Thou know’st, (for all to Thee is known),

Thou know’st, O Lord, and Thou alone,

Thou know’st that Thee I love.

O that I could, with favored John,

Recline my weary head upon

The dear Redeemer’s breast!

From care, and sin, and sorrow free,

Give me, O Lord, to find in Thee

My everlasting rest.

Thy only love do I require,

Nothing on earth beneath desire,

Nothing in heaven above;

Let earth, and heaven, and all things go,

Give me Thy only love to know,

Give me only Thy love.

–Charles Wesley





The Deepest Thing

9 04 2011

“Love one another as I have loved you…”
Jesus, John 13:34

So self-surrender is at the very heart of God and is at the very heart of all His attitudes and actions. When He asks us to surrender ourselves He is asking us to fulfill the deepest thing in Himself and the deepest thing in us.

-E. Stanley Jones, Missionary





Ravishing and Irresistible

16 10 2010

“The way of holiness is sweet and ravishingly lovely.”

–Jonanthan Edwards
18th century pastor and academic

 

“Holiness is thinking as God thinks, and willing as God wills.”

–John Brown
19th century Scottish theologian

 

“How little people know who think that holiness is dull. When one meets the real thing…it is irresistible.”

–C.S. Lewis





The Call of the Bride

27 03 2009

But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God. Where you die I will die, and there will I be buried. May the LORD do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you.” 
Ruth 1:16-18 

When a woman consents to marry a man, she (if she’s a Christian) should think about the relationship between Christ the Bridegroom and the Church, His bride-and-beloved1Bride.  The Church responds to His call.  The Bride relinquishes her independence, her name, her destiny, her plans for a “life of her own” (remember Jesus’ words: “If anyone wants to follow Me, let him give up his right to himself”), her family, her home, and perhaps even her country to join the life of this man.  She accepts his destiny, his name, his future, and everything else as her own.  If she is called to be his wife, she is called to support and encourage him in the work God calls him to do. ..

…(The source of these perorations is not Why I Feel Good About Being Submissive, by Elizabeth Elliot [don’t order it—there is no such book], but the Book of Books—check out what it says about Christ and His Bride, and then ask Him to help you live by that paradigm.  I’m asking everyday.)

Elizabeth Elliot
“Where Will Complaining Get You?”
November/December 1983 Newsletter





The Nature of Worship

26 06 2007

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”
(John 4:21-24)

Worship is not what you feel when you look at the ocean or when you are enjoying a wonderful mountain lakworship-at-the-beach.jpge. It’s not the way you feel smelling the cut grass of a perfectly manicured golf course or hearing the squeak of perfect snow under your skis. Many of us confuse worship with inspiration. Inspiration occurs when God illumines our lives with His gracious presence. Worship is our response to those moments. If we truly want to honor the God who gave us perfect swells, clear trout streams, ski slopes, golf greens, beautiful children, and loving spouses, we should enjoy those things six days a week and then give God the worship He commands on the seventh. Worship always includes gathering with God’s people and participating in “spirit and in truth.”

–Tod E. Bolsinger, It Takes A Church To Raise A Christian: How The Community of God Transforms Lives, pp93-4