...The Son of Man did not come to be served, BUT TO SERVE..." (Mark 10:45)
Have you ever laid it all on the line? Can you remember what it felt like, how it tasted? That one championship game you played in years back perhaps? Or maybe when you confessed your dark secret to your lover that one time? Or maybe you stood up for what you believed in before a room of opposition, even though you were scared of what people might think of you later? For some this is the peak of human experience the last time they really felt "alive".
Whatever your expirence was I know it wasn't being scourged, humiliated and crucified by people who hate you and would do far worse to you if they had the permission and power to do so. And they did this, not for anything you did, but for you just being, "you". (Not very politically correct if you ask me) Jesus, in the performance of a lifetime, before the audience of God and man, practically stood on his head to serve you. He did absolutely everything in order to justify you before God, paving the way to your salvation with his blood, sweat and tears.
If you could rate yourself (turning that highly trained muscle of critique you love using on everybody and everything on yourself for a moment) could you honestly say you have given your all in life today? Why not? (Think about it don't just read it like a bystander to your own life)
Well for those who answered, "no..." Your problem lies in trust and faith in who God is, and you need to be encouraged. And rediscover who YOU are! If you answered, "Yes!" Then the question is, what have you given your all to today? Was it to build and manipulate your life and others to make your life better, or more comfortable. Or maybe to put a couple more bucks in the 'ol checking account? Or maybe you have to give your all because if you don't God will be mad at you. Well your problem also lies in trust and faith in who God is, and you too need encouraging.
If you read your Bible and try to memorize scripture, if you go to church and tithe, if you tell people about Jesus and listen to Christian radio does that make you a Christian? It is said, "if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck." But then how is it written, "On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name? And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'"(Matthew 7:22-23)
Be encouraged your life depends on how Jesus Christ performed and not on what you have done or ever will do! He is the only one who had the talent and worth to make laying it all on the line (paying for your sins with His life) have any validity or any power in your life. The only thing that makes a Christian a Christian is a living relationship with the person Jesus. Does God live in you? This is the only distinguishing factor and it is an inside thing not an outside thing. But the one who God is in will have outward characteristics that testify to that fact.
If you want a Spirit filled life, your life must be filled with the Spirit! Not just once but continually, over and over. A constant filling. But this only comes by believing there is really a person named Jesus, who really is God, who really did become a man, who really did resist sinning until the moment he had to bare all your sins and the wrath of God being nailed to a roman cross, who really did die, who really was resurrected bodily from death, who then ascended bodily into Heaven to sit at the right hand of the Father and who really sent God the Holy Spirit to abide in you. If you believe this, the Holy Spirit is in you! But, "Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives." (Galatians 5:25 NLT) If this doesn't apply to you then right now stop everything you are doing and pray to God with sincere humility and ask Him to fill you with his Spirit even now and BELIEVE! Thank God for doing what you asked and enjoy Him! (Did you do it?) Expel doubt and live in the newness of life! "At one time we thought of Christ merely from a human point of view. How differently we know him now! This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; A NEW LIFE HAS BEGUN! (2 Cor. 5:16-17) Fully free in Christ and fully accountable before God in truth. Do this as often as you need to through the day (which will be often) and you will not need anyone to tell you about God for He Himself will be with you and showing you everything and you will know what it means when people say, "a relationship with Jesus." Or ,"Walk in the Spirit." It is a plane of existence that can not be accessed by anything but faith in Jesus Christ. If you do not know what I'm talking about ask God for this life. If you know this life my prayer for you is that you remain steadfast in it! This is the work of God! Repent and believe!
So God writes to you who are conceived in confusion, "It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit."
The tree does not strain and strive to produce it's fruit neither do you will your blood to flow through your veins, so it is with the Spirit filled life it is not something sustained by your effort or will. It is sustained by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus. "This is the only work God wants from you: Believe in the one he has sent."(John 6:29) I pray you are experiencing this miracle in your life, if your not then know that this plane of existence is a reality and is alive and we all have access to this Spirtual life for it is ours in Christ.
“Awake, O sleeper, rise up from the dead, and Christ will give you light.” (Ephesians 5:14)