“Be glad in the LORD and rejoice, you righteous; and shout for joy, all you upright in heart!” Psalm 32:11
The psalmist calls the righteous to rejoice and the upright to shout for joy. The Christian who is intimate with God the Father through Christ is well aware that anyone in such a state has reason to celebrate. Are you righteous? If so, it is a precious gift which is in no way of your own merit. Are you upright in heart? If so, it is a result of divine influence from the indwelling Holy Spirit, another undeserved, invaluable gift endowed by our Creator to those who simply receive Him by faith.
Any measure of spiritual success we may attain is a direct result of the crafting hands of the One who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. Let us always be careful to praise God for the righteousness we have received by grace, through faith. This righteousness and uprightness in heart was not measured out and delivered in one lump sum when we first received Christ as Lord and Savior, but is given daily, even hourly, to weak, failing men and women who call on the name of the Lord to receive the righteousness they know they lack. Friend, as we keep a sober estimation of ourselves, we will recognize each day as an opportunity to glorify God and humble ourselves by rejoicing, shouting, and praising Him for every underserved gift He has, is, and will give us. He is truly worthy!
I take this moment to humble my heart and lift my hands and voice in grateful adoration for all You have done for me. I ask that Your Holy Spirit would work within me to keep me aware and mindful of the gifts and blessings You are constantly pouring out. May there always be, from me, a resounding sound of praise as response for each gift You give. Amen.
Ephesians 1:3 Blessed [be] the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly [places] in Christ.
If we simply look around us, it’s difficult to comprehend that every spiritual blessing is accessible to us. The world doesn’t have much to offer and honestly, as a friend stated this morning, “heaven is looking better and better”.
What’s beautiful about this passage is that “every spiritual blessing” bestowed upon us is not contingent upon this realm we live in. In fact, the word blessed is defined in the English language as “enjoying happiness or more specifically, enjoying the bliss of heaven.” We have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. That’s the reality of where we live, friend. In Christ. “For in him we live and move and have our being.” Acts 17:28
Father, help us to get our bearings. Let Your blessing be unhindered by circumstance. Lift the fog of negativity so that we can see clearly the light of Your glory in our midst and enjoy the bliss of heaven today in the here and now! Thank You Jesus! Amen.
2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone [is] in Christ, [he is] a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
Without waxing morbid, this morning, let’s take a moment to plot the burial of some things. ANYTHING you are dealing with from your PAST, is DEAD. That addiction, relationship, bad habit, or self-destructive behavior is now dead with your “old man” who facilitated it. Why entertain dead things whenever God has granted you a new life in Christ to explore? Since the weather is breaking, we can do a group exercise, today. Write down on a piece of paper the “dead” things from your past. Don’t be shy about honestly putting pen to paper. You can either burn that note or grab a shovel to dig a small grave for it. Either spread the ashes or bury the note safely under ground. As you do, commit the past to the past and prayerfully embrace your bright future in Christ! It’s time we lay to rest the harassment of the past!
Thank you for full and total forgiveness in Christ Jesus. I believe in faith, that my future in Christ is full of good things. Today, I willfully bury the dead things that have harrassed and discouraged me. Symbolically, I act in faith believing that total severance has taken place. Now, I open my heart to possibilities for growth, maturity and blessing. Thank you for setting me free!!!! Amen.
2 Corinthians 5:7 For we walk by faith, not by sight.
When I was a child, my mother sang in church. I can still hear her with passion in her voice as she sang, “One Day I Will.”
The lyrics of verse one goes this way, “I have never seen the face of my Savior but serving Him has been such a thrill. I have never seen the gates of that city, but one day I will.”
In today’s passage, Paul is conveying to the Corinth church that the Holy Spirit gives us personal hope. We have a house in heaven and will have a new immortal body. In fact, it is His Spirit that stirs our faith. Even though I cannot see Jesus now, I know someday I will. That same faith not only believes for the life after but for what we presently cannot see, it stirs great faith to believe for. If seeing is believing, then it requires no faith. Without it, we cannot please God. No matter your present circumstance today, there is something greater than what you can see. It is the Word of God. Hold fast to it when you pray, knowing that everything by faith will change. See it by faith.
Heavenly Father, thank You for eternal life. Even though I cannot see You, You exist in my heart. By faith when I pass from this life, I will not taste death. Your Word says that immediately I will be in heaven with you. Thank You for the new body at the resurrection. Because I can trust you with my life, I trust You with every need I face today. Thank You for working all things together for my good. In Jesus name, Amen.
“For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “the just shall live by faith.” Romans 1:17
Paul writes to the Romans, saying “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth”. He goes on to explain that the gospel message works in the lives of believers and in the church as a whole to reveal the righteousness of God when we live “by faith”.
Paul is saying that the righteous man is one who identifies, not with human self-sufficiency, but with the gospel of the salvation that God provides. This is righteousness; to live each day with self-awareness and public proclamation of total dependence on Christ. When we express this dependency individually and corporately, God can confirm the message on our lips with signs, miracles, and wonders. Thus, the scripture is fulfilled that God can reveal His righteousness through those who live by faith. Faith’s greatest expression is trust. Our trust in Christ is expressed through obedience to His commands and rest in the salvation He died to offer. The obedient believer who humbly and consistently proclaims his best works are still filthy rags and useless to reconcile him to God is the believer through whom God can reveal His righteousness, from faith to faith, and glory to glory.
Heavenly Father, may Your Holy Spirit touch my heart and mind today. Transform me by the renewing of my mind. Help me to understand and implement the practical steps to honor You by faith so that I might be a vessel You can use to reveal Your Righteousness to those around me. Amen.
Matthew 9:22, Jesus turned around, and when he saw her he said, “Daughter, be encouraged! Your faith has made you well.” And the woman was healed at that moment.
There is such simplicity to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
In the previous verse, we see her approaching Jesus and she was not looking for anyone to encourage her in her plight. She wasn’t talking allowed so others would hear her and boost her moral. No. This woman with the issue of blood was conversing with herself. She was engaging her own faith and putting a demand on her mind, will and emotions to agree together with her faith. “If I can just touch his robe, I will be healed.”
If ever we believed our thought life to be insignificant, this should make us stop and reconsider.
Because her emotional being agreed with her spiritual being, her physical being took action. She reached for Him. Can you see it? There is such a crowd. So much so that she can barely reach her hand out in front of her. It seems everyone wanted the Lord’s attention. I’m certain many were asking Him to touch them but that’s not what caused Him to turn around. The turn around came because she wanted to touch Him.
Lord, today, although so many circumstances are crowding in around me, pleading for Your touch, I choose to press through the crowd. I’m determined to touch You. You are always available to me and my faith can access You, without fail. You turn around for me and I know I will see turn around! Thank you Lord Jesus. Amen.
Matthew 9:2 Then behold, they brought to Him a paralytic lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”
Was there an aura about these friends that revealed their faith to Christ? Was Jesus privy to an x-ray view of their hearts? No, I believe the friends of the paralytic demonstrated a level of faith that was obvious, not only to Jesus but to all who witnessed their moxy. Putting pressure on God is quite alright! These friends placed a demand on, as well as full confidence in Jesus’ supernatural ability to heal their paralytic friend. Faith demonstrated does two things: (1) puts the Lord on the spot (2) reveals child-like confidence in His abilities. Should you stand in faith, today – the folks in your world will see and take note! More importantly, your Father in Heaven will hear and move.
I am convinced of Your ability and desire to step into my situation. I present to You not only my needs, but the needs of those I care about. Because I know You hear me, I have full confidence that Heaven will move to meet the need. I love and worship You with all of my heart.