Christ in You

May 25, 2017

Matthew 25: 35-40

“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37″Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40″The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’

Christ in You

You are a ray of sunshine.

You are the extension of God’s divine.

You bring healing in the midst of pain.

You are heaven on an earthly plane.

When you walk into a room it brightens up.

When you spend time with me you fill my cup.

You are my companion when I feel alone.

The voice of love is in your tone.

You are the servant that gives your all.

You pick those up who stumble and fall.

You encourage those who have lost their worth.

You share the life that brings new birth.

I see His face when you smile.

I see His walk when you go the second mile.

I see His love in your unselfish ways.

Yes, you are His expression day by day.

Kent Stuck 

Blessings,

#kent

Psalms 91

1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.

3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.

4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.

5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;

6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.

7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.

8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.

9 Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;

10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.

11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.

13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.

15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.

16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.

God wants to Reign in You

God has raised you up and it is He that will sustain you.  Even when you walk through the valley of the shadow of death He walks there with you and His presence overshadows you.   Many are the perils of the righteous, but the Lord sustains them through them all.  The place of rest is the place of total release and letting go into the arms of the Father.  It is so hard for us to stop clinging to human dependence and reason.  Everything in the natural screams if I let go of control I’ll fall to my death.  How can Father bear you up on eagles wings if you never jump with the wings of faith and trust.  Father is training His sons and daughters to soar in the heavenly places, but they can never know that freedom as long as they confine themselves to the nest.  Father is stirring up the nest.  He is making it rough and uncomfortable.  Where it was once a place of comfort and safety it is now a prickly and hard place.  One we can no longer rest in.  That is to cause us to launch out of our nest of self-dependence and world economy. 

Yes. we may flounder as we flap our inexperienced wings of faith, but even as we fall Father is there to bear us up and bring us again to that place of safety.  He is teaching us launch out.  He is coaxing us out of the nest that we might fly with Him in the heavenly places.  Fear is our greatest detriment to faith.  Once fear is overcome faith will abound.  We must learn to stop operating out of the nature of what we had been and start operating in the nature of who we now are in Christ Jesus.  Old habits die hard, but it is a day for a new paradigm in how we live life.  God gave us His life by investing the talent of His Son within us.  How will we invest and use what He has given us?  Will we bury it in the ground and go on with life as usual or will we invest it in faith in the lives of others till we see it increase and multiply?  Christ didn’t put the responsibility of saving souls upon our shoulders, but He did say, “If I be lifted up I will draw all men unto Myself.”  If we will be faithful to lift Him up the Holy Spirit will draw the souls to Himself.  Faith requires us to step into what we can not naturally see.  It requires us to believe what does not naturally exist.  It is making God’s Word the substance of those things we hope for and the evidence of what we do not see. 

It is by faith that we will go and will do as the Father leads us and as we hear the Good Shepherd’s voice.  In Him alone is our safety and our provision.  All that the world offers is so soon fading away.  Your only true place of rest is under the wings of the Almighty.  That rest can only be entered into by faith and obedience.  That is where we will find His highest and that is where we will find our peace.  Proverbs 18:10 says, ” The name of the LORD [is] a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.”  Today, we as the people of the Most High God, stand, live, move and have our being out of Him and unto Him.  We are become the expression of His life and even as He breathed into unto us His image, we are exhaling in His very nature and life.  Now, unto the God who sits on the throne be glory and honor, power, majesty and dominion forever and ever.  Our God reigns and He will reign through His holy priesthood and His holy nation.  Rise up people of God and shout to the glory of God for He reigns in our hearts and His salvation is unto everlasting. 

Blessings,

#kent

Setting your Mind

May 23, 2017

Setting your Mind

Colossians 3:2

Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.

Once there was a little girl who at young age was taken to piano concert at Carnegie Hall where she listened and watched in awe as the master pianist brought the keys alive and made music like she had never heard before.  As she went home the music continued to play in her head and as she closed her eyes she could visualize it all over again.  That day marked a turning point in the direction and the purpose for which that little girl lived.  The next day she announced to her parents that she had decided to be a concert pianist.  Her parents listened with a patient, encouraging and yet skeptical ear.  A lot of kids are impressed with something for a while, but then they grow bored or tired of it and move on to the next thing that impresses them.  This was not the case with this little girl.  She convinced her parents to get her a used piano and give her music lessons.  It became apparent early on that she was passionate in her pursuit and committed to her practice.  Day after day they would see her, without being told or prodded, spend her spare time practicing.  Even when she was not at the piano she was going through the notes in her mind, thinking upon how to better perfect a piece. That day at the concert she had made a commitment and promise to herself that she would one-day play in Carnegie Hall and in other great places around the world.  She held fast to that promise and commitment.  Through much diligence, hard work and practice she began to excel in her music ability and proficiency.  As she grew older she never wavered from her dream.  Along the way she experienced some hurts and setbacks, but it was the disappointments that drove her the harder to be the better.  Finally came the day when her dream was realized and she began to be invited to play at greater and greater venues as her fame and reputation grew.  Then one day, she realized her greatest dream of all when she was invited to play at Carnegie Hall.  No doubt her tenacity, desire and faith inspired other children that they also could strive and position their lives for greatness.

When we read through the Bible and as we commit our lives to Christ may we be inspired as we behold the hand of the Master and His handiwork, as we read the words of Jesus and behold His life.  He is our inspiration and our call to commit all that we are unto Him and begin to practice His presence.  Our goal in Christ will never be obtained through looking at our inability, our sin or our failure.  We set our eyes upon Jesus and commit our hearts to Him knowing that as He has come to live in us, He is also able to live through us in greater and greater ways, as we are able to give over who we were, into what He is.  Like the little girl, everyday means practice.  Every day we learn to walk closer to Jesus and more in tune with the Holy Spirit as we practice being in His presence and living out of His life.  He is the foremost on our minds; He is the motivation and the inspiration behind all that we do.  To be like Him, to be conformed to His image and nature, to give our all for Him as He gave His all for us, that is our dream and that is why we set our affections upon things above and not on things of earth.

Blessings,

#kent

Foundation for Faith

May 22, 2017

Foundation for Faith

Psalms 18:2

The LORD [is] my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, [and] my high tower. 

We find in life that often we are a self-filling prophecy.  We become and are shaped in the image of whom we think and believe that we are.  Maybe we started out in our lives doubtful, fearful, with a lack of confidence and very little faith in ourselves that we could do much of anything or be anything.  As long as we hold on to that mindset and it is coming through in our outward demeanor, do you think we will see much success in our lives?  If we don’t believe in ourselves, then how could we expect others to believe in us?  What if, on the other hand, we dare to believe all that God says about us and dare to believe all that He said He would be for us?  Now we have a foundation for success.  As we believe and then act upon that premise by faith and those beliefs, will our life change?  

King David was a man who is a prime example of one who spoke, sang and wrote what God was to His life.  Even in the deepest valleys of his life he dared not trust his soul, but rather He spoke out of His spirit and ministered to His soul the truths and the realities of God’s Word.  He was constantly meditating, and reminding Himself of the goodness of God, His faithfulness, His power, His salvation and all of the attributes and benefits of God and His nature.  This is what makes the Psalms so powerful.  They are Spirit anointed sonnets and songs of who God is and why life is worth the living because He is in it.  David would recite the Word of God and encourage His soul.  His faith would then lay hold of the truth that He spoke and begin to act upon it.  

Many of us see ourselves as weak, untalented, insignificant people.  That may be you and I outside of Christ, but what can we be in Christ?  Are there any limitations to what God can do in and through us, except in our own mind and thinking?   The foundation of faith is wrapping our mind and heart around God’s Word, assimilating it into our hearts and speaking into our doubtful and fearful souls.  It is so often good just to pray the Psalms, reading and speaking them to God as if they were your own.  It will inspire faith in your heart and courage to your soul as it did for David.  

Who is the Lord and what is that to me?  When we answer that question we find the foundation for our faith.  Upon that foundation we can build a successful life, for our confidence is in Him who is able to do abundantly more than we can even ask or think.  

What is the foundation of your life today?   Is it the Rock or is it the sand?

Blessings,

#kent

Spiritual Position

May 19, 2017

Ephesians 4:2-7

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.

Spiritual Position

I asked the Lord a while back about how do we begin to operate out of the third heaven or that kingdom realm rather that the  second heaven of flesh and spirit?  In that realm we have only seen and experienced in part and my heart is to see ‘God’s kingdom come and His will be done in this earth as it is in heaven.’ I realize that the reality of that truth begins in us, His people.  That truth first has to take place in  us, because we are His body and the vehicle through which He manifests His kingdom in the earth.  So as I asked about this operating out of the third heaven and I felt like God gave me three keys that would bring us into our authority.  It is not just in the knowledge of these three keys that this brought about, but it is in the revelation and the experience of these that this takes place.  These three keys were in the revelation of your identity in Christ, your position and your purpose.   When we get the revelation of ourselves and what Christ has brought us into then we will begin to step into our authority. 

If you read the past articles written you will observe that a predominant topic of conversation deals with the identity of who you are in Christ.  We can do nothing truly effective if we don’t really know who we are or we are just focused on what we used to be.  When we see Jesus, we see the image we have been created in and the character and nature that we are to possess.  Jesus came bringing the kingdom of God into the earth.  He was the firstfruits, the predecessor, the template and the pattern for what His many-membered body is to become.  “Christ in you, the hope of glory”, that is the mystery of who you are becoming.  1 John 4:17 says, “In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.”  In Galatians 2:20 Paul says, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”  Through these many other scripture we a revelation of our true identity in Christ. 

It is this next part that I wish to address today, “Our Position”.  Our scripture here in Ephesians 2:6 describes our position in Christ.  “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.”  While we may occupy the earth with our natural bodies we get insight here that our spirit man is positioned with Christ in heavenly places because we are in Him and that is where He is seated, so we can also operate out of this position and seat of authority.  Colossians 3:1-2 goes on to tells that if we understand our position in Christ then this how we should operate out of that position, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 3For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.”  Your position in Christ is a spiritual position and you must operate out of that position from you spiritual man.  That means our focus has to be on kingdom or  “things above” and you can only be and operate out of this position if you know who you are “in Christ.”  Paul goes on to make it more practical in verses 5-11.  “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. 7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. 

Jesus makes this comment to the Pharisees in Luke 17:20-21, “Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, 21nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you.” In this “position” it is all about Christ, because that is who we operate out of by faith in Him and the empowerment of the Holy Spirit.   What that ultimately means to us is the eradication and putting away from ourselves any identity that is not of HIM.

One sister shared an astute observation,  When you are on the earth looking at the giants in your life they look so big and unconquerable, but when you see your position, “in Christ”  seated at the right-hand of God the Father  looking down on your giants, they are as grasshoppers.  What is our perspective?  For us to move into these places we have to be willing to lose our old stinking thinking that we might put on the mind and the perspective of Christ.  He finished the work and He set down at the right hand of the Father until His enemies be made His footstool.  What makes up the feet of Jesus if it isn’t His body.  We are simply the fulfillment what He has already done, but how are we going to accomplish that if we don’t know our identity, our position and our purpose? 

Blessings,

#kent

1 John 4:13-17

We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. 16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.

Living Example of Love

We know that God is love and we know that God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son, so what is our response and responsibility?  John is a disciple who has a revelation of the love of God.  No other writer expresses the love and relationship with God the way that John does.  I think that we hear of the love of God with our ears, but do we experience it in the depths of our soul?  What is John saying here?

God is love.  His love expression is Jesus Christ.  We know that we now live in this love because we live in Christ and He lives in us through His Spirit.  What does this say about the atmosphere and the aura that surrounds our life and permeates our being?  In Christ we are saturated in the love of God.  If then we are saturated in this love shouldn’t this love define our life, our purpose and the expression of our being?  The judgement of God is not our fear, because the purpose of our being is to express the love of God to a lost world to rescue them from judgement. 

A fellow related a story to me this week about a time when his car broke down and stopped in traffic.  He said he set some safety cones out and was trying to get his car running again when a car came up behind him and began to honk profusely.   He thought. “I have designated that I am having a problem why doesn’t he just go around?”  He said he finally went back to see what this guy’s problem was and it happened to be the associate pastor at the church he attended.  He said when the man recognized him as a person from the church; he ducked his head and quickly pulled around and drove on.  He said he has never mentioned it since.  Now we could judge this associate pastor for his actions, but probably most of us, with a little thought, can think of times in which we acted no better.  We, like the scribes, Pharisees and religious ones have crossed to the other side of the road and turned our head to ignore an unpleasant or inconvenient situation we haven’t wanted to get involved in.   In fact, at times we have become down right irritated and angered at the inconvenience that others impose upon us. 

The question becomes who is our neighbor and what is our responsibility to love them?  Remember now, we are the ones who are saturated with the love of God.  I hope you see my point, because it is very convicting to me when I look back and see my actions and responses in the light of the love of God that should be prevailing in me.  If self-interest is still my predominate motivator then have I really gotten a revelation of the love of God that is resident in me?  It is one thing to know who I am, but then I have to become the expression and the substance of whose I am and that should be LOVE.  Love possesses me, He owns me, He fills and He lives in me.  If there is one thing that should be noticeable and stand out about our life it should be His love.   If we know and rely upon the love God has for us, how much more the world, without realizing it, is depending upon God’s love through us to reveal to them salvation and hope, “because in this world we are like Him.” 

Are we like Him?  Are we His expression of love?  In this world we must be the living examples of God’s love.

Blessings,

#kent

Old Things Obstruct the New

Hebrews 9:6-8

Now when these things were thus ordained, the priests went always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service [of God]. But into the second [went] the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and [for] the errors of the people: The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:

As I was looking around my yard and home today I was noticing areas where we have made improvements, remodeled and changed our existing structure and yard.  I also noticed how much of the remnants of those old things still remained and cluttered my house and yard.  Either I hadn’t gotten around to getting them hauled off or I thought they might come in handy someday, so for whatever reason they remain cluttering up our lives and home, keeping us from fully enjoying the fullness of the improvements that we have made.  It occurred to me that our spiritual lives are a lot like that.  While we don’t remove the foundation of our homes we do update and make improvements to our existing structure.  The same is true of our spiritual lives.  We are continually growing in our revelation and understanding of God, of who we are in Him and who He is in us.  Why aren’t some these revelations having a more profound effect in our relationship with God?

The Lord showed me some time back that He gave the tabernacle of Moses, the priesthood and that spiritual service as a type and shadow of the true spiritual tabernacle and service that is revealed in Christ and His Church.  This is clearly seen and discussed in the book of Hebrews.  What the Holy Spirit brought to my attention is the little phrase contained the scripture above, “the Holy Spirit thus signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing (Hebrews 9:8).”  Now we know through the Word that when Christ died upon the cross, the veil in the temple was literally torn supernaturally from top to bottom, the Lord spiritually signifying to us that we all now have access into the Holy of Holies, His very presence.  Hebrews 10:19-20 verifies this by saying, “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus.   By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh.”  Why is it that now that we have access to the Father we are not experiencing the measure of His fullness and presence we so desire?  Much of it may have to do with the excess baggage we are still carrying with us from our former belief system that was steeped in law and the traditions of men.  It may be that our first tabernacles are still standing or least remnants of them.  We have our own religions, denominations, agendas and our own way of doing things.  So much of it is not placed there by the Spirit of God, but by man, much of it by his own prejudices and opinions.  While, in many cases it contains elements of truth, is it the truth of the revelation that God has for us in this hour.  Just as the tabernacle of Moses and priestly service was truth in the day of Moses, in God’s reality it was only pointing the way to a deeper truth and reality of God’s true spiritual tabernacle contained in Christ and His Church.  2 Corinthians 3:18 says, “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.”  The Lord is conforming and transforming us to His image from glory to glory, from understanding to understanding, from revelation to revelation.  We are continually maturing and should be growing up into Him in all things.  The question is, as we are growing in our understanding and revelation are we still clinging to the old?  Do we still maintain our former belief system, our former mentality, our former thinking and level of faith?  Is there a lot of clutter in our spiritual house that is hindering us from experiencing a deeper and more meaningful relationship with God’s presence?   The only way we can enter into the Holiest of all is in full assurance of faith and the blood of Jesus.  What other things in our lives and in our beliefs are we using to try and gain this access.  The Lord Jesus has done it all, but we may not be experiencing it all because as long as the former temple is still standing the Holiest of all is still not going to be made manifest to us.  The truth is, most of us need to clean house and get rid of a whole lot of junk that is doing nothing but hindering us from moving into a richer and more meaningful experience with God.  This is where we need to begin to seek the Holy Spirit’s help in identifying and getting rid of old ways of thinking and believing that are not inline with His present day revelation and truth.  2 Corinthians 5:17 says,  “Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”  As the old things have passed away we must get rid of even the remnants of them from our lives that we may come, unencumbered into the fullness of the new, into His Holy presence, with boldness, fullness of faith and with the blood of Jesus.

Blessings,

#kent

Colossians 1:27

To whom God would make known what [is] the riches of  the glory of  this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

The Experience of a Saint

This was forwarded to me by a dear one in Christ and my spirit bears such witness with it that I wanted to share it with you.  It is somewhat lengthy, but very rich in its wisdom and content.

Reading this ( below ) not only blessed the socks off of me , but brought my focus right back where it belongs, on the Altogether Lovely One . It isn’t about me  or ministry or revelations or experiences. It is all about HIMSELF.

And when at last I got my eyes off my sanctification, and my experience of it, and just placed them on the Christ in me, I found, instead of an experience, the Christ larger than the moment’s need, the Christ that had all that I should ever need who was given to me at once, and for ever! And when I thus saw Him, it was such rest; it was all right, and right for ever. For I had not only what I could hold that little hour, but also in Him, all that I should need the next and the next and so on, until sometimes I get a glimpse of what it will be a million years afterwards, when we shall “shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of our Father” (Matt. 13: 43), and have “all the fullness of God.”

And so I thought the healing would be an it too, that the Lord would take me like the old run-down clock, wind me up, and set me going like a machine.

It is not thus at all. I found it was Himself coming in instead and giving me what I needed at the moment. I wanted to have a great stock, so that I could feel rich; a great store laid up for many years, so that I would not be dependent upon Him the next day; but He never gave me such a store. I never had more holiness or healing at one time than I needed for that hour. He said: “My child, you must come to Me for the next breath because I love you so dearly I want you to come all the time. If I gave you a great supply, you would do without Me and would not come to Me so often; now you have to come to Me every second, and lie on My breast every moment.”

He gave me a great fortune, placed thousands and millions at credit, but He gave a cheque-book with this one condition, “You never can draw more than you need at the time.” Every time a cheque was wanted, however, there was the name of Jesus upon it, and so it brought more glory to Him, kept His name before the heavenly world and God was glorified in His Son.

I had to learn to take from Him my spiritual life every second, to breathe Himself in as I breathed, and breathe myself out. So, moment by moment for the spirit, and moment by moment for the body, we must receive.

You say, “Is not that a terrible bondage, to be always on the strain ?” What, on the strain with one you love, your dearest Friend ? Oh, no! It comes so naturally, so spontaneously, so like a fountain, without consciousness, without effort, for true life is always easy, and overflowing.

And now, thank God, I have Him, not only what I have room for, but that which I have not room for, but for which I shall have room, moment by moment, as I go on into the eternity before me. I am like the little bottle in the sea, as full as it will hold. The bottle is in the sea, and the sea is in the bottle; so I am in Christ, and Christ is in me. But, besides that bottleful in the sea, there is a whole ocean beyond; the difference is, that the bottle has to be filled over again, every day, evermore.

Now the question for each of us is not “What think you of Bethshan, and what think you of divine healing?” but “What think you of Christ?”

There came a time when there was a little thing between me and Christ. I express it by a little conversation with a friend who said, “You were healed by faith.” “Oh, no,” I said, “I was healed by Christ.”

What is the difference? There is a great difference. There came a time when even faith seemed to come between me and Jesus. I thought I should have to work up the faith, so I labored to get the faith. At last I thought I had it; that if I put my whole weight upon it, it would hold. I said, when I thought I had got the faith, “Heal me.” I was trusting in myself, in my own heart, in my own faith. I was asking the Lord to do something for me because of something in me, not because of something in Him.

So the Lord allowed the devil to try my faith, and the devil devoured it like a roaring lion, and I found myself so broken down that I did not think I had any faith. God allowed it to be taken away until I felt I had none. And then God seemed to speak to me so sweetly, saying, “Never mind, my child, you have nothing. But I am perfect Power, I am perfect Love, I am Faith, I am your Life, I am the preparation for the blessing, and then I am the Blessing, too. I am all within and all without, and all for ever.”

It is just having “Faith in God” (Mark 11: 22). “And the life I now live in the flesh, I live,” not by faith on the Son of God, but “by the faith of the Son of God” (Gal. 2 20). That is it. It is not your faith. You have no faith in you, any more than you have life or anything else in you. You have nothing but emptiness and vacuity, and you must be just openness and readiness to take Him to do all. You have to take His faith as well as His life and healing, and have simply to say, “I live by the faith of the Son of God.” My faith is not worth anything. If I had to pray for anyone, I would not depend upon my faith at all. I would say, “Here, Lord, am I. If you want me to be the channel of blessing to this one just breathe into me all that I need.” It is simply Christ, Christ alone.

Now, is your body yielded to Christ for Him thus to dwell and work in you? The Lord Jesus Christ has a body as well as you only it is perfect; it is the body, not of a man, but of the Son of man. Have you considered why He is called the Son of man? The Son of man means that Jesus Christ is the one typical, comprehensive, universal, all-inclusive Man. Jesus is the one man that contains in Himself all that man ought to be all that man needs to have. It is all in Christ. All the fullness of the Godhead and the fullness of a perfect manhood has been embodied in Christ, and He stands now as the summing-up of all that man needs. His spirit is all that your spirit needs, and He just gives us Himself. His body possesses all that your body needs. He has a heart beating with the strength that your heart needs. He has organs and functions redundant with life, not for Himself, but for humanity. He does not need strength for Himself. The energy which enabled Him to rise and ascend from the tomb, above all the forces of nature, was not for Himself. That body belongs to your body. You are a member of His body. Your heart has a right to draw from His heart all that it needs. Your physical life has a right to draw from His physical life its support and strength, and so it is not you, but it is just the precious life of the Son of God. Will you take Him thus today, and then you will not be merely healed, but you will have a new life for all you need, a flood of life that will sweep disease away, and then remain a fountain of life for all your future need. Oh, take Him in His fullness.

It seems to me as if I might just bring you a little talisman today, as if God had given me a little secret for every one here and said to me, “Go and tell them, if they will take it, it will be a talisman of power wherever they go, and it will carry them through difficulty, danger, fear, life, death, eternity.” If I could stand on this platform and say, “I have received from heaven a secret of wealth and success which God will give freely, through my hand, to everybody who will take it,” I am sure you would need a larger hall for the people who would come. But, dear friends, I show you in His Word a truth which is more precious. The Apostle Paul tells us that there is a secret, a great secret which was hidden from ages and from generations (Col. 1: 26), which the world was seeking after in vain, which wise men from the East hoped they might find, and God says it “is now made manifest to his saints”; and Paul went through the world just to tell it to those that were able to receive it; and that simple secret is just this “Christ in you the hope of glory.”

The word “mystery” means secret; this is the great secret. And I tell you today, nay, I can give you, if you will take it from Him, not from me-I can give you a secret which has been to me, oh, so wonderful! Years ago I came to Him burdened with guilt and fear; I tried that simple secret, and it took away all my fear and sin. Years passed on, and I found sin overcoming me and my temptations too strong for me. I came to Him a second time, and He whispered to me, “Christ in you,” and I had victory, rest and blessing.

Then the body broke away in every sort of way. I had always worked hard, and from the age of fourteen I studied and labored and spared no strength. I took charge of a large congregation at the age of twenty-one; I broke down utterly half a dozen times and at my last constitution was worn out. Many times I feared I should drop dead in my pulpit. I could not ascend any height without a sense of suffocation, because of a broken-down heart and exhausted nervous system. I heard of the Lord’s healing, but I struggled against it. I was afraid of it. I had been taught in theological seminaries that the age of the supernatural was past, and I could not go back from my early training. My head was in my way, but at last when I was brought to attend “the funeral of my dogmatics,” as Mr. Schrenck says, “the Lord whispered to me the little secret, ‘Christ in you’; and from that hour I received Him for my body as I had done for my soul. I was made so strong and well that work has been a perfect delight. For years I have spent my summer holiday in the hot city of New York, preaching and working amongst the masses, as I never did before; besides the work of our Home and College and an immense mass of library work and much besides. But the Lord did not merely remove my sufferings. It was more than simple healing. He so gave me Himself that I lost the painful consciousness of physical organs. That is the best of the health He gives. I thank the Lord that He keeps me from all morbid, physical consciousness and a body that is the object of anxious care, and gives a simple life that is a delight and a service for the Master, that is a rest and joy.

Then, again, I had a poor sort of a mind, heavy and cumbrous, that did not think or work quickly. I wanted to write and speak for Christ and to have a ready memory, so as to have the little knowledge I had gained always under command. I went to Christ about it, and asked if He had anything for me in this way. He replied, “Yes, my child, I am made unto you Wisdom.” I was always making mistakes, which I regretted, and then thinking I would not make them again; but when He said that He would be my wisdom, that we may have the mind of Christ, that He could cast down imaginations and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ, that He could make the brain and head right, then I took Him for all that. And since then I have been kept free from this mental disability, and work has been rest. I used to write two sermons a week, and it took me three days to complete one. But now, in connection with my literary work, I have numberless pages of matter to write constantly besides the conduct of very many meetings a week, and all is delightfully easy to me. The Lord has helped me mentally, and I know He is the Saviour of our mind as well as our spirit.

Well, then, I had an irresolute will. I asked, ‘ Cannot you be a will to me?” He said, “Yes, my child, it is God who worketh in you to will and to do.” Then He made me to learn how and when to be firm, and how and when to yield. Many people have a decided will, but they do not know how to hold on just at the proper moment. So, too, I came to Him for power for His work and all the resources for His service, and He has not failed me.

And so I would say, if this precious little secret of “Christ in you,” will help you, you may have it. May you make better use of it than I! I feel I have only begun to learn how well it works. Take it and go on working it out, through time and eternity-Christ for all, grace for grace, from strength to strength, from glory to glory, from this time forth and even for evermore.

HIMSELF

by A. B. Simpson

Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord;

Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word.

Once His gifts I wanted, Now the Giver own;

Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone.

Once ’twas painful trying, Now ’tis perfect trust;

Once a half salvation, Now the uttermost.

Once ’twas ceaseless holding, Now He holds me fast;

Once ’twas constant drifting, Now my anchor’s cast.

Once ’twas busy planning, Now ’tis trustful prayer;

Once ’twas anxious caring, Now He has the care.

Once ’twas what I wanted, Now what Jesus says;

Once ’twas constant asking, Now ’tis ceaseless praise.

Once it was my working, His it hence shall be;

Once I tried to use Him, Now He uses me.

Once the power I wanted, Now the Mighty One;

Once for self I labored, Now for Him alone.

Once I hoped in Jesus, Now I know He’s mine;

Once my lamps were dying, Now they brightly shine.

Once for death I waited, Now His coming hail;

And my hopes are anchored, Safe within the veil.

Unless Holy Spirit nudges me , I probably won’t be sending out “little letters” for a while and only to those who have responded in some way . I know there are those whose mailboxes are already clogged with unwanted stuff.

I’m always glad to receive a word from any of my brothers and sisters and shall try to give a personal reply ASAP.

Loving Him because He first loved me ,

and loving you in Him ,

Pat

Gussie

blessings,

#kent

John 10:28

And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.

In the Father’s Hand

The little boy put his hand in Father’s hand and clutched tightly.  The Father held firmly and lovingly the hand of the little boy as they walked through the streets of the city.  The little boy was in awe as he craned his neck to see the top of the tall buildings.  He was fascinated by all of the sights, sounds and all of the individual dramas that seemed to be taking place all around.  He felt the security and the safety of the Father’s hand as he inhaled all of the senses of that were rising out of the city streets where they walked.  They walked through some of the department stores with the variety of their wares displayed.  They stopped and ate at a local deli where the owner was very friendly and had great food.  They waited to cross the busy streets full of living machinery, moving, honking and pressing to reach their destination.  They saw men dressed very sharply in suit and tie and they saw men in rags, sitting and begging on the street corners; what a strangely diverse world.  It was so massive and grand and yet it seemed in control as long as the little boy held on to His Father’s hand. 

The visits to the city became more frequent as the Father always had a purpose for going and He would always encounter and speak with new and different people.  The one thing that didn’t change is that the little boy always held firmly to his Father’s hand.  The more they visited the city the more the little boy grew comfortable with his surroundings. He felt less intimidated and awestruck and now he was more curious.  As his Father would be talking to others he began straining and pulling on his Father’s grip to see some new thing or want to explore some new place. 

One day, near Christmas, they were in the city and the stores were alive with animated characters and displays of lights and toys.  As they were walking down the street they passed the most beautiful display with automated cars and video games that you could play and all of the things that he desired to have and play with.  As they passed he kept looking back, longing to go back to watch and play.  Suddenly without warning, he broke his grip with his Father’s hand and he began running back through the crowd to the place that they had passed.  He heard his Father calling out for him, but his heart was set upon a mission and that was to get back to the toy store that they had passed a ways back.  Suddenly, he forgot all of the caution and the warnings that His Father had given to him.  His heart was fixed on one thing; he had to get back to that toy store.  As he ran back, he heard the voice of His Father become more and more faint as he became lost in the crowd of shoppers.  Finally he arrived at his destination and with joy and delight he played with the interactive games and looked at all of the displays.  After he had finally had his fill, he began to look around at where he was and what he should do now.  He began to think about the warning and exhortation that his Father had given him, “Never let go of My hand.”  He had disobeyed, because he had become more caught up with the world around him than the relationship and the obedience he had with his Father.  Now he suddenly found himself alone, lost and with no one to look after him.  How would he eat, where would he sleep, who would watch out for him?  Suddenly the toys had little appeal as fear began to grip his heart and he began to grasp the gravity of his situation.  What if somebody wanted to hurt him or kidnap him, what would he do? 

He went over to a bench in the mall and as he set there he began to cry and repent that he had ever let go of his Father’s hand.  That grip held him in relationship with the one who was his protector, his provider and the one that truly loved and cared for Him.  He had thrown that foolishly away to pursue that which caught his eye.  Where he had once held such a reverential awe and respect for his Father, he had on a whim, abandoned Him to pursue the attractions of the world around him.  Now he sat there lost, alone, hungry and scared.  As he held his head in his hands, he cried and said out loud “Father, I have been so bad and so stupid to run away from you.  Please forgive me.  Please come find me.  I am so sorry I let go of your hand.”  After crying and repenting for sometime he finally opened his eyes only to see this large figure before him.  As he saw his legs and followed his form upward, his eyes met with the kindest and most wonderfully loving eyes in all of the world. It was His Father.  With great joy he leapt into the embrace of His arms and repeatedly sobbed how sorry he was.  Their reunion was wonderful as his Father forgave him.   The little boy wondered at himself that he could have taken for granted all that He had with his Father to run after such temporary pleasures and delight.

Later, he asked His Father how he found him.  His Father said that he had been observing him the whole time from the crowds.  He said, I would never leave you or forsake you, but you had to come to that place where you realized what it would be like without me.  Only then would you be willing to obey me and never again let go of my hand.

Blessings,

#kent

Psalms 71:1-6

In you, O LORD, I have taken refuge; let me never be put to shame. 2 Rescue me and deliver me in your righteousness; turn your ear to me and save me. 3 Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress. 4 Deliver me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked, from the grasp of evil and cruel men. 5 For you have been my hope, O Sovereign LORD, my confidence since my youth. 6 From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother’s womb. I will ever praise you.

What Value do we put on Life?

It is God who has given each one of us the breath of life.  He has known us from the foundations of the world and each one is precious in His eyes.  It is God who gives life and unto Him that life returns.  It is He that imparts to us a soul that we may comprehend, know and lay hold of Him.  How it must grieve the heart of God when a people can put themselves in the place of God deciding if a unborn child has the right to live and presumptuously thinking that we have the right to take that life that God has given.  When did God impart to us the right to decide who would have a quality of life worth living or that it could be done away with if it were not convenient to us?  We live in a nation that has legally given us this right to deny any rights to our unborn.  I can tell you that there are many grieving women out there that bought into this lie and have felt the horrible impact of what they have done. They have felt the shame and condemnation of their actions and live with that every day.  Morally, they know within their hearts, that what they have done is wrong, regardless of what our laws allow and now so many live, struggling to forgive themselves and no doubt struggling with the truth that God can forgive them for what they have done.  If you are one of those women, then know that God’s grace and forgiveness can extend to our deepest sin and there is no stain that His blood cannot cleanse if we seek Him in repentance and ask for that forgiveness.  Often it is not God’s forgiveness we struggle with as much as it is forgiving ourselves.  God would not have you continue to carry this burden of guilt, but through that experience may you become His greatest advocate for life and the instrument that can help others from making this same mistake. 

The greatest handicap in our life is not that we are born into adversity, it is that we would not know adversity, weakness or trial.  Some of the most challenged people are the greatest people of character and strength.  Like the psalmist David, in above scripture, adversity makes us cry out for God, it is the travail that births His presence and strength into our weakness and failure.  It is in what we can not be that we can find that He is.  It is through adversity that we become overcomers.  Usually we are praying, “God, deliver me out of my adversity,” but that would only defeat its perfect work in you.  Rather we should pray, “God, be my strength and enablement to go through this adversity and prevail through You.”  We so often have what might be termed a rapture mentality that looks for God to catch us up and deliver us from all tribulation.  The greater truth is to already be entering into the ark of His safety and life that He might preserve you and keep you through all tribulation.  David didn’t see God there when he was fleeing for his life from Saul, but His prayers and faith in God covered him and preserved him in safety.  God was there in the midst of David’s praise and supplications.  He was all that David asked that he would be.  It was through this adversity in David’s life that God was training him up to rule and reign.  It was in this adversity that God was training David that his reliance should never be upon himself, but always upon his God.  It was through this adversity that David could know that his strength, his wisdom and his ability was the presence of God’s anointing upon his life.  God’s favor rested upon David because he did know that and did trust in his God.  Even so, David also knew a time in his life of great failure and sin when he committed adultery, lied and had Bathseba’s husband put to death.  He had to live with the consequences of those actions, but I believe he also found God’s forgiveness and mercy through his repentance for his sin. 

We are all cracked pots, fragile, weak and subject to breaking.  That is why we must put ourselves totally into the Potter’s hands that He may shape and mold and be the glue that fills those cracks of our weakness and failure.

Respect the life that God has given rather it is unborn, old and frail, or lowly and unimportant in appearance.  God is the author of it all and to Him it is all, precious.   Our function is to be a light and serve His creation in the love of Christ.  We are His hands and fingers that holds, cares for and loves all His creatures, both small and great.

Blessings,

#kent

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