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(Healing & Victory Through Jesus Christ)

Archive for the category “Christ In You”

The Only Way For Mature Growth

One you know the convincing proof of  new identity in Christ – convinced that you are a child of God, you must grow in maturity toward the fullness of this identity.

II Peter 3:18 tell us “But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”

This growth is spiritual in nature and can only be done daily.  It involves the same choices that all Christians must make.  You either choose spiritual death or spiritual life in your daily walk decisions.

Death is the way of Satan and your flesh; life is the way of Christ and His Holy Spirit.  The way of Christ is Calvary, the narrow road.  Few go this way because of the deep pains along the way.

Jesus wants to (1) reveal, (2) remove, and (3) heal these pains and hurts.  His way of Calvary is so healing, loving, and gentle even though at times it may be very painful.  The pain will only be temporary as you consistently keep your heart open to His love.

However, you must go through His Calvary cross daily so you can die daily to your flesh.  Calvary is where your flesh is put to death.  Otherwise, your daily resurrection experiences of the love of Jesus within you will often be just beyond your grasp.

Is not Calvary a symbol of death?  Of course it is.  Fortunately, it is the necessary death of our flesh, not our spirit.  This is what Jesus refers to in Matthew 10:38-39 “And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.  He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for My sake shall find it.” 

It is only our daily opportunities to crucify our flesh so the life and love of God can be rooted in us more deeply.  He desensitizes us to our flesh desires more and more.  (Just remember not to carry your cross alone.  Jesus is with you and in you carrying it.  Let Him carry your burdens.  Just rest in His love.) 

This is how you grow daily in maturity and character.  You have the frequent opportunities to die daily to your already dead flesh.  Therefore, the life and love of Jesus in you will grow and flourish.  His love will flow from you naturally.

This is the love the fearful, hurting world so desperately needs to hear and experience.  God wants to share this love to the world through you.  But, first, you must grow in His love – to grow in maturity and character.  As you die more to your flesh, God trusts you more to share His love to the world.

Think About It:  For you to share the love of God to the world, God must first trust you to handle it properly, to not abuse it.

This is why you are given opportunities daily to die to your flesh desires.  After you die to them, you easily become increasingly more dependent on Christ in more areas of your life.  Therefore, God can trust you more to share His love to hurting and needing people.  Only His love will motivate you to.

As I look back 25-30 years ago when I was a young Christian, I persistently prayed for an increase of spiritual gifts.  I sure wanted them to help the body of Christ.  My desire and prayers were very sincere.  However, I was immature (not in a selfish way); I was not ripe to be used (to fly) in this area.  (One can be very sincere, but sincerely wrong.)  I did not know it then, but what I really needed was a deeper, intimate walk with Jesus.  After all, I was “masking” my severe depression during this time. 

Because I was covering up my depression (and all my flesh), God could not trust me to share His love to a hurting world.  Why would He?  I needed His love for myself first, to heal my own heart and hurts.  Otherwise, I definitely would have abused His love.

Basically, my prayer for spiritual gifts was very ego-driven.  My flesh would have been so puffed up; I would have bragged and shown off my spiritual gifts.  I would always be looking out the corner of my eye to see who noticed “how spiritual I was.”

What an abuse of the love and grace of God!  It is now so easy to understand why God never gave me more spiritual gifts.  He surely answered my prayer, but in His way.  I definitely needed a deeper, intimate love relationship with Him.  I am so grateful.  He quickly reminded me often of Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” 

It posibly may be the same for you.  How many of your prayers and motives are driven by your flesh?  How often do you peer out the corner of your eyes to see who notices “how very spiritual you are”?  Only you can answer that.

Be very honest with yourself.  Do you not desire the love of Jesus to root deeper into your heart and life?  Spend intimate, silent time with Jesus often, especially in His Word.  Keep your heart open to His love.  The Holy Spirit will reveal your true motives.  Do not run away when He reveals more of your flesh desires.  Acknowledge them and face them.  It is only Jesus permitting you opportunities to die to them.

God is looking for which of His children He can trust more to share His very intimate love with to a hurting world.  Do you agree?  Do you think you can easily abuse His love and grace?  Do you believe you need a deepening awareness of your intimate love with Jesus?  You do this as you die daily to your flesh desires for power and popularity in the Christian world, especially the world of spiritual gifts.  Only the Lord will show your own specific answers.

Then, I assure you – He will elevate Himself in you and through you because He can trust you more to share His love and grace to people.  People will most definitely see the love of God flowing from you very clearly and very easily.  You will be ready to fly only as God intends you to fly.

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All Things Are Possible Through CHRIST IN YOU

Matthew 19:26 “With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.” 

The impossibility is only possible because JESUS IS YOUR VICTORY.

In your weakness, Jesus becomes your strength.

Jesus takes over your entire new life (as much as you permit Him to.)

Your new life is to be hidden with Christ in God.  You need to begin seeing life through His eyes from above.

Colossians 3:1-4 “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.  For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.  When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.”

From these verses, Paul is showing you how to live as your new identity.

  1. You die to flesh and hide yourself in Christ.
  2. Christ, as your new identity, now takes over and lives through you.
  3. People will now see Christ in you when you “seek those things that are above.”
  4. You are now risen with Christ, risen from the grave with your flesh left behind buried.

The Christian life is not as complicated as many make it out to be.  The Christian life is only Jesus Christ.

Once you understand and focus more on your new identity, Jesus takes over through you and the rest falls in place under Him.  The Holy Spirit now teaches you how to live as God’s child.

 The Christian life is only JESUS CHRIST. 

 When you begin to see life from above, you easily flow into the intimate love and grace of God.

Jesus calls you daily to come into His heart of love and rest so He can take over.

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”  One must reflect daily on these verses.  Take them into your heart often so the Holy Spirit can truly make them real.

The Impossible is NOW Possible Through Christ In You.

Our Growth as Christians (A Charles Stanley Devotional)

Galatians 2:20

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

There’s a goal to the Christian life, which God expresses this way: “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son” (Rom. 8:29). This refining process is called sanctification. And there are several identifiable stages en route to this goal, but sadly, most believers are unfamiliar with them. Let me offer some definitions so you can identify where you are on the journey and understand what to expect.

Salvation is the first stage of the Christian life. This describes our redemption from sinfulness through Jesus’ atoning sacrifice. What results is forgiveness of sin, which lets us have a relationship with Almighty God.

Next, God gives us opportunity to serve (Ephesians 2:10). We were created to do good works in Jesus’ name.

But at some point, we notice something isn’t working. This is the start to stage three: frustrated inadequacy. This unpleasant but necessary part of the journey can last varying amounts of time. Without it, we’d undoubtedly experience self-sufficiency and pride. But we should recognize this difficult phase as beautiful because it leads us into the best part of our spiritual lives: total dependency upon Jesus as Lord of our life. And we will be fulfilling our ultimate goal: becoming a reflection of Christ.

Sadly, many Christians don’t reach a point of complete reliance on the Lord. Pride, discouragement, and distraction can ruin focus and perseverance. Paul reminds us to fix our eyes on the goal of maturity in Christ (Phil. 3:14). Learning to die to self is painful, but ironically, it’s the only true way to life.

True Freedom & Victory – The Key Way

True freedom & victory in Christ can only be achieved when you are able to face the deep depths & pain of your broken heart.
This permits you to bring Jesus into the midst of the brokenness & place His healing touch of love over it.
That’s why it’s called Calvary – the way of the cross – to death.

The victory process continues in then experiencing the joy of the resurrected life and love of Jesus in you.
The focus then becomes more consistently CHRIST IN YOU.
Christ in You becomes more and more your primary focus.

This can only be achieved through SILENCE within.  Silence within you is where Christ In You resides.  Too many Christians look for Jesus in signs & wonders.  God, though, will OFTEN & ONLY reveal Himself in the still, small voice within the heart of each person.

May the simple truths just shared penetrate the deepest depths of your heart.

The reality of Christ In You eagerly & expectantly waits to be experienced every day.  Don’t pass this magnificent joy by.

 

Christ Living In You – – – simple living

  1. Christ living in you NOW is your DAILY VICTORY.
  2. Christ living in you gives you capability of a one-on-one, intimate relationship with God.
  3. Christ living in you gives you the opportunity to experience Jesus Christ every moment of every day for the remainder of your life.
  • When you sleep.
  • When you awake.
  • When you work.
  • When you are at school.

 

Basic Reflections of Victory

  1. You share Christ’s life IN YOU every day, until you share it eternally with Him in heaven.
  2. IN CHRIST makes you fit for heaven.  CHRIST IN YOU makes you fit for earth.
  3. With Christ in you 24/7, it makes no sense to settle for second best – the desires of the flesh.
  4. Jesus has PERMANENTLY taken up residence in you.  He will never have a desire to leave.  In fact, He is demanding your flesh move out.
  5. Christ living in you permits God to have total & complete access to your heart & life.

Too Hurt Or Too Christian? (Personal Experience)

The Holy Spirit was burdening my heart about this subject.  He is the author of what I am now writing.

I’ve experienced much in my 33 years as a born again Christian.  Jesus saved me on April 1, 1979.  It only seems like yesterday, but life has gone by so quickly.

Accepting Jesus Christ as my personal Lord & Savior is by far “the greatest decision I ever made.”

I’ve experienced the highs and the lows of being a Christian.  I’ve lived reality.  What I will now share is an accumulation of what I have learned from all this experience and how it relates to today.  Specifically I will be referring to the hypocrisy that many Christians live – whether intentionally or not.  The majority of this hypocrisy is called legalism.

One of the biggest challenges a Christian faces is using discernment and common sense when dealing with other Christians.  It’s challenging enough to do this with the world, but the hypocrisy Christians do to one another is nothing but a big disgrace and scandal in God’s eyes.  God’s heart is deeply grieved when He sees His children acting more like children of Satan, the devil.

A good portion of my life from childhood was lived with severe depression.  Unless you have been depressed, one has no idea of the depths of one’s pain.  It basically was a deeply, hurting, broken heart that I lived with for decades.  I wanted so much to be accepted and loved by anyone and everyone.  Without going into many details, the depression stigmatized my life that I couldn’t even function as a normal person.  I often would cry myself to sleep every night.  I would avoid stress or conflict at all costs.  My hands & body would shake whenever a stressful even occurred – which was often every day.

The depression actually led me to give my life to Christ.  What a joy it became as a Christian.  I never experienced such joy in my entire life.  It was like every joy and need in my life was filled.  Life became totally worth living.

I grew over the next few years as a Christian.  Reading the Word of God about my personal Savior Jesus just made me fall in love with Him more everyday.  I could not put the Word of God down.  His Word and Love were rooting deeper into me.  I was memorizing Scriptures and becoming more involved in ministry within my church.  I was believing that I had arrived at maturity as a Christian.  That was a bad thought. 

My life started to become self-righteous and egotistical.  I thought I was so much more mature than other people that I started proudly showing off how spiritual I was.  I looked to be pat on the back whenever I could.  I took credit for things that I had little or no part in.  My ego was definitely inflated big time.  I looked down on other Christians and enjoyed making mincemeat out of them – for they were so immature as a Christian.

My Christian life was only one of a hypocrite, a fool.  I could quote Scripture and be available at church whenever needed.  However, my tongue was one of evil, but, of course, I would not admit it.

Many Christian hypocrites live the same way.  They scoff and demean other Christians thinking they know it all.  Of course, they would never admit they are wrong.  For only the Holy Spirit can reveal the depths of a hypocrite’s heart.  Fortunately, they is what occurred to me.

After 12 years as a Christian, the depression symptoms I experienced earlier in life came back to haunt me more than ever.  What made it worse was being a Christian I was suppose to have all the answers.  It did not make one bit of sense.

What was I doing wrong?  Very simple: I was a hypocrite still living with depressed issues and a broken heart.

The symptoms overwhelmed me again.  The Holy Spirit showed me how evil I was living as a Christian.  Jesus was still living inside me, but I was letting my ego side of sin control me  – acting like a Christian.  I never stopped being born again for I knew Jesus lived in me despite all my hypocrisy.

Fortunately, with this revelation of how evil I was as a Christian, I admitted I was a very mean person to others.  I was not a very pleasant person to be around.  I was so grateful to the Holy Spirit for this revelation of evil within me.

This revelation actually was the big turnaround I needed.  The Holy Spirit was showing me the depths of my broken heart.  I cried again like never before.  Fortunately, the stage was set for my total healing and victory.  I was living a life as a Christian that only Christ can live through me.  No wonder I was a mean, arrogant, and egotistical failure.  That is a Christian hypocrite.

The healing and victory is CHRIST IN ME.  It is Jesus in me living His life through me.  I am simply to rest in His love and be sensitive to the Holy Spirit in me as to what actions to take or words to say.  That’s all.  So simple, but we Christians make it so difficult.

Jesus is the Christian life.  Only Jesus can live the Christian life through us.  No matter how evil and hypocritical we live as a Christian, Jesus in us will never leave.  We don’t become unborn again.

When your eyes are focused on Jesus, Jesus lives His life through you.

  • This means you will simply look at people with love – the way Jesus does.
  • You will not judge as condemnation the wrong motives of other.
  • You will not showoff your Christian knowledge.
  • You will not boast about your Christian intelligence.
  • You will not scoff or demean others.
  • You will simply let Jesus live through you and leave the results to Him.

I was hurt with depression and a broken heart.  Jesus saved me, but as time went by, I still had a broken heart.  I covered up the heart by becoming a legalistic hypocrite – too Christian.  Jesus delivered me from being a legalistic hypocrite but showing me to let Him live His life through me.  Life now is the most magnificent it has ever been.

My prayer for you is the following:

  • From my experience, may the Holy Spirit teach you whatever lesson you need to learn about understanding & being Too Hurt or Too Christian.

 

 

 

Limiting CHRIST IN YOU

Many Christians “mask” the deep pain & shame of their hearts.  Instead, they drown themselves in ministry & other Christian activities.  It is all a facade.

God cannot heal the broken heart unless the Christian permits Him access.  It will be very painful, of course, but, it is absolutely necessary.

Jesus wants to heal the entire being of the Christian.  He is limited when the Christian, for whatever reason, is not ready to face those deep hurts.

The deep hurts are understandable, especially if they have been rooted down for many years (even decades).  Years of shame & pain have been covered with dirt, cobwebs, and thorns.  That’s why when Jesus does the healing, He does it one day at a time.  He gently & tenderly removes the thorns and cobwebs so His seed (Christ in you) can grow on fertile ground.

If Jesus removes them all at once, then there will be a large, wounded opening in the heart which can easily become infected & possibly worse than before.

However, it is a MUST to be transparent and come before Jesus with an open heart.

Seek Jesus intimately, especially the Christ In You.
He is Your Victory . He is Your Strength.  He is Your Everything.

The Christ In You wants to burst forth so Jesus can share His love through you to a hurting world.  Too many people need to know that Jesus personally loves them.  Jesus has personally chosen you.  Jesus wants to trust you more to share His love to others.  Jesus wants people to see Him when they see you.

Are you ready to open your heart further, despite the pain that will come?

You do it by faith in The Christ In You to do it.  Rest in His love and be patient as you do it.  I assure you that you will come out shining, however short or long it takes.

This is the victory I have personally experienced now for 17 years.
IT’S THE CHRIST IN ME.

The Life Of Christ shall come forth in you.
You will experience Christ In You more than ever before.
You will be satisfied, joyful, and totally fulfilled in the enjoyment of the Christian life which is Christ in you.
I can’t wait to hear the GOOD NEWS about CHRIST IN YOU.

IDENTITY – The Christ In You

One of the biggest guarantees for a Christian’s daily victory is knowing his identity – who God says he is.

We are all born into this world with a human identity.  We are the child of our parents.  As we grow, the ways of the world & what we do define who we are.  Additional identities are added.  We become students, friends of others, know ourselves to be a cousin, grandchild, aunt, uncle, etc.  More identities are added years later – college student, occupation, husband/wife, alcoholic, depressed, etc.  We even learn we are born into this world as sinners, without the presence of God in us.

What is important to remember is that every identity the world gives you is only temporary.  One day you will become an “ex” identity.  For example, one day Lebron James will be an ex-NBA basketball professional.

Think about it: Who wants to have an identity as an “EX?”  Very unattractive it is.

Who or what we place our dependence and hope on defines who we are.

That’s why it’s important and invaluable to have an identity that will last forever.  That’s where God comes in.  God gives you an identity as His child.  You are a son/daughter of the King.

Do you think your identity as a child of God is temporary?  I hope not.

Your identity as a child of God is based on what Jesus did, neither how you feel nor what you do.  One can NEVER become an ex-child of God.

God guarantees your identity as eternal because of Who lives in you – CHRIST IN YOU.

When God the Father sees you, He ONLY sees Jesus in you.  Jesus dealt with all your sins and consequences on the cross.  He crucified them & left them buried in His tomb when He rose from the dead.  He then took up residence in you when you chose Him as Savior & Lord.  He made you a child of God.

Since you are now a child of God, God wants you to walk that way.  Ephesians 5:8 You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, so live your life as children of light.

If you are now a child of God, why do you want to walk in sin?  Makes no sense.  Should a butterfly go back to live like a worm caterpillar?  Makes no sense.  You can do it and enjoy the pleasures of your sin choice.  However, you know the pleasure is very temporary and a big void of guilt & emptiness comes over you.  That’s the Holy Spirit convicting you to repent and turn back to God – and continue walking again as a child of God.  That is what occurred to the Prodigal Son in Luke 15.

Total joy and satisfaction only comes from God.  To walk in an identity of sin makes no sense for a child of God.  When you have joy & satisfaction as a child of God, sin loses its appeal.  You begin to realize that sin is just stupid to be a part of.  You may relapse/backslide.  However, you are growing in your maturity in Christ.  Christ In You is becoming more real every day.  With Christ In You, your recovery comes quicker each time.

CHRIST IN YOU is your Key to Daily Victory.

Christ In you is one identity that will neither disappear nor cease.  Jesus lives in you and will never leave nor forsake you.  Jesus guarantees it.  I encourage you to consistently see Christ In You in everything you do.  Christ In You will take over your life one day at a time, one step at a time.

  • If you are a teacher, Christ In You is the teacher.
  • If you are a parent, Christ In You is the parent.
  • If you are an executive, Christ In You is the executive.
  • If you are a pastor, Christ In You is the pastor.
  • If you are a taxi driver, Christ In You is the taxi driver.
  • If you are a college student, Christ In You is the college student.
  • If you are an unemployed worker, Christ In You is the unemployed worker.
  • As a Christian, ONLY Christ In You is the Christian.

You can see the difference with life when you let Jesus live the Christian life through you.  Now one cannot be, for example, a Christian and an alcoholic.  That is two identities.  One is either an alcoholic trying to be a Christian or a Christian struggling with alcoholism.  One cannot be both.  That is inconsistent in God’s eyes.  If one is an alcoholic, go ahead and drink.  That is what the identity of an alcoholic does.  And don’t complain about the hangovers or the destruction of lives (especially of your family) that your drinking causes.  However if you are a child of God, drinking alcohol is inconsistent with who you now are.  That’s why it makes no sense and is not attractive.  It is a way the world try to identify you.

I pray the reality of CHRIST IN YOU is taking deeper roots.

Jesus In You is your permanent identity as a child of God. 

Remember also, Satan is petrified of Jesus In You and will do anything to distract your attention from tapping into the riches of this Wealth in you.  Satan will try to tempt you in many ways, especially trying to get you to see your old identity.

Keep walking as a child of the King, a child of light.  You were once something else.  Now you are a child of God.  Ephesians 5:8 You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, so live your life as children of light.

 

 

NORMALCY For A Christian (A Word For NOW)

Jesus challenges us to be “in the world but not of the world.”

This is one of the most challenging responsibilities to do on a daily basis.  One can be very successful for a repeated number of days.  However, we are called to do it everyday.  What occurs is that often we fail, sometimes very often.

This has been one of the most important lessons for me in my walk with Jesus.  I am sure many of you can relate to what I will share.

I put so much into living daily living as a Christian.  What happens at times is I reach a “bump in the road” that stops me for a few seconds.  Other times those bumps are actually “red lights.”  That is my current situation.  Yesterday, I hit a “red light” that made me realize I was so burned out – physically, mentally, and spiritually.  It stigmatizes me to cease doing anything.

I want to shut out from the world.  One must be careful because when you shut yourself out from the world, it is easy to become too lethargic and depressed – a gateway for the devil.

My “bump in the road” and “red light” have taught me that I must always remember to seek God during this shutdown time.

I need to seek Jesus intimately to keep Him real in the midst of all this darkness. 

I realize I need to be more dependent on Jesus than ever before. 

I realize God can take any darkness away at the snap of the finger.  God can also permit any darkness to halt me in my tracks.

One other thing I realize is how much God continually loves me.  God desires to grow me in character, humility, confidence, trust, and the fruit of the Spirit.

So as much as I feel stigmatized right now, I want to seek God more intimately than ever before.

This is NORMAL CHRISTIAN LIVING.  As I go further into my daily walk into the world (my job, my family, my friends), I bring more of “Christ in me” with me.  That way people will see more of “Christ in me” living through me.  My red lights and bumps will be less as I have grown more in Christ.  That is what I am learning more of being “in the world but not of the world.”

So your bumps and red lights are NORMAL in Christian living.  It’s what you do in the midst, during them that matters much.  Seeking Jesus intimately, even when you don’t want to, will slowly become more a top priority when your heart continues to be open to His love.

The Victorious Life: Applying Christ In You (Part 3 of 3)

Again, remember we grow in maturity to this level.  True growth comes only from intimacy with Him.  God only causes the growth.

The more a believer spends intimacy with Him, being still in the inner man, the more God shows intimate love.  Then God will trust the believer more to show His love to the world.

God will never share any space with flesh.  Unfortunately, many have learned this the hard way by burnout.

I assure you if you continue this approach God will elevate you very much and very quickly.   You know enough now that you can never trust yourself.  Unfortunately, many believers have never reached this level.

I would also recommend you spend as much time alone with the Lord as possible.  Let the Lord show you what doors in your life He wants to close.

What I mean is you probably have many Christian friends and some will be very jealous of your spiritual growth.  They will look down on you because you will receive insight that so many of them have been longing for many years.  They will look at you as an immature Christian who thinks you know so much.

Therefore, they will think you should not have the blessings God will give you.  They are wrong.  It does not matter how long one is a believer; it matters how real Christ is.

Jesus wants to become so real to you.  So guard His love very well.  Use common sense wisdom as the Lord’s leading regarding sharing and fellowship.

I lived alone with this treasure for three years.  I did not meet one believer who truly understood these riches of Christ in you.  Now the fruit is paying off.  I have friends whom truly walk this way.

Remember it is the RESURRECTED CHRIST living in you NOW.

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