Diligence

October 9, 2014

Proverbs 4:23
Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it [are] the issues of life.

Diligence

It is often astounding when we have observed a garden or a lawn that at one time was so beautiful and groomed and then to observe it’s state after a time when it has been abandoned or neglected. What we see are two totally different scenes, first one of beauty and then one of weeds, deterioration and ruin. Our soul can be much the same way. It can be that beautiful garden where we meet and fellowship with God consistently and frequently. It can be a sanctuary of light and truth, filled with joy and blessing. In this state people can look upon it and see the beauty that fills it. What happens when we become less than diligent to maintain that fellowship and groom that garden of our soul? Little by little it will deteriorate. It will dry out, weeds will sprout up and the good fruit and plants will whither and die. A good garden requires continual diligence and so it is with our souls. Many of us can look back over our lives and see times when we have had that wonderful relationship and fellowship with God and our soul has flourished in the sunshine of His love and presence, but then other things came in and captivated our time and attention. We began to neglect more and more our time of prayer and fellowship with the Lord until our garden was one in name only, but not in appearance and fruitfulness. Darkness began to fill the areas where there had once been so much light and life and truth. Weeds began to spring up and choke out the purity, the love and the joy that once abounded there. One day it dawns upon us as we see our life a mess, what happened to my garden? What happened to that relationship and fellowship I once had? The Lord doesn’t abandon us, we abandon Him. He is always there to help us to reestablish that garden and that fellowship again. The thing that I have observed in my life is that when we give ground to the enemy, it is harder taking it back the second time. Yet, the Lord is there for us if we will return to Him in love and repentance.
Diligence is often what we loose sight of. Our Christianity and faith weren’t a one time thing when we walked an isle and gave our heart to Jesus, it is a day by day relationship that rejoices in the good times, but hangs tough and continues to trust even in the difficult and trying times. It is like a marriage, it needs our constant attention or we will grow apart. We want a relationship where every day with Jesus it sweeter than the day before.
Hebrew 6:10-12 exhorts us by saying, “God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. 11We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope sure. 12We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.” Our faith is not a sprint it is a marathon. It is not about how fast we run in the beginning, but about our steady and steadfast run through life. It is not about starting the race, but about finishing it and that takes perseverance and all diligence. The Lord called each of us to be a partaker of His divine nature and He has given us great and precious promise through which we might enter in. 2 Peter 1:2-10 speaks to this diligence in obtaining all that God has called us too. “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 9 For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. 10 Therefore, brethren, be even more diligent to make your call and election sure, for if you do these things you will never stumble; 11 for so an entrance will be supplied to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” The Lord has given us all that we need, but we need the diligence to keep pressing into Him and maintaining that garden relationship with Him. Perhaps for some of us our relationship and fellowship with the Lord has been slipping away and we are loosing that closeness and intimacy with Him. Be diligent to turn back your heart to Him and draw near again. He loves you and delights in your visitation and your fellowship. Be diligent and don’t give up or turn away.

Blessings,
#kent

Conformed to His Image

March 17, 2014

Romans 8:28-30

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.


Conformed to His Image


Early in the morning the alarm sounds to wake him from his sleep.  After a few groggy minutes he stirs and arises from his bed. The first thoughts are, “Praise you Father, thank you for a new day.”  As he staggers towards the bathroom his minds begins to clear.  “Who am I?”, are among the first thoughts that he thinks and hears.    

“I am a son, a called and set apart one for my Father.  I am what Jesus prayed I would be in John 17:20-23.  “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. ”  I am the product of sonship, Father God’s adoption and acceptance of me in Christ.  I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.  I am the product of God’s unconditional love, calling, purpose and design.  He has created me for His glory and I have been brought into unity with the Godhead, through Christ to let the world know that Jesus still lives, that God sent Him and that they may believe that He sent Him for them.  Even as Jesus told Thomas in John 14 that He was the expression of the Father, He has called me out of darkness to be the expression of Christ in me.  

I am no longer the man I used to be.  Old Adam has been crucified with Christ and no longer lives.  “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. (Galatians 2:20)”  Old things have passed away and behold all things are new, for I am new creation in Christ Jesus, no longer conformed to the world, but transformed, metamorphosed into His image through the renewing of my mind (Romans 12).  I am being changed from glory to glory.  With unveiled face I am being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit (2 Corinthians 3:18).  “As He is, so are we in this world (John 4:17).”  

“There is now no condemnation for me for I am in Christ Jesus and the law of the Spirit of life has set me free from the law of sin and death ( Roman 8:1).” I will longer embrace, identify and think upon the former life of sin, death and judgement.  As a son, I live under a new law, a higher law and a more glorious dispensation.  By faith I receive it and embrace it.  I no longer walk after the flesh, but after the Spirit, because I am a product of the Spirit and His life now abides in me.  I am for His glory and no longer for my own, therefore by the Spirit I will put to death the deeds of the flesh, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.  “For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. (1 John 5:4)””

Then he thinks what is my position as God sees me and he remembers the scripture from Ephesians 2:22, “And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”  So I am God’s habitation and abiding place, but positionally Ephesians 2:4-6 says, ” 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.”  So I am in Christ in heavenly realms and places.  With that heavenly position and perspective my giants will become as grasshoppers.  I will do as Colossians 3:1 says, ‘Since, then, I have been raised with Christ, I will set my heart on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 2Set my mind on things above, not on earthly things. 3For I died, and my life is now hidden with Christ in God. 4When Christ, who is my life, appears, then I also will appear with him in glory.’  If my life is hid in Christ then I sit with Him at the right hand of the Father.  For anything to touch me, it first must go through the Father, through the Son and back to me.  What touches me ‘I know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.’

What is my purpose?  Ephesians 2:10 says, ‘For I am God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for me to do.’  If the purpose of Jesus is to draw all men to Himself and destroy the works of the devil then that must be my purpose as well since I manifest Him.  I am to be the expression of His love, because He first loved me (1 John4).  1 Peter 2 says, “But I am a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that I may declare the praises of him who called me out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once I was not His people, but now I am one of the people of God; once I had not received mercy, but now I have received mercy.”

Now that he has refreshed his heart, mind and spirit in who God says he is, he is ready to arise, spend time with Papa and conquer his day.

 

Blessings,

#KentStuck

Zion

January 27, 2014

salm 132:13-18

For the Lord has chosen Zion, he has desired it for his dwelling:

14“This is my resting place for ever and ever; here I will sit enthroned, for I have desired it—

15I will bless her with abundant provisions; her poor will I satisfy with food.

16I will clothe her priests with salvation, and her saints will ever sing for joy.

17“Here I will make a horn grow for David and set up a lamp for my anointed one.

18I will clothe his enemies with shame,


Zion


Many of us may know that Zion was a stronghold or hill in pre-Israelite time.  David captured this hill from the Jebusites as described in 2 Samuel 5:6-7, “The king and his men marched to Jerusalem to attack the Jebusites, who lived there. The Jebusites said to David, “You will not get in here; even the blind and the lame can ward you off.” They thought, “David cannot get in here.” 7Nevertheless, David captured the fortress of Zion, the City of David.”  This is where David  takes up residence.  Here, in Psalms 132, Zion is referred to as the desired dwelling of God, His resting place where He eternally dwells and where He is enthroned.  In the natural it was the high place and stronghold of Jerusalem, the capital of Judah, the place of headship, rulership, authority and kingdom.

Verse 17 says, “Here I will make a horn grow for David and set up a lamp for my anointed one.  I will clothe his enemies with shame.”  A horn is a “strong one”  What we gather from the scripture and from how Zion and Jerusalem are described in the spiritual sense, we can see by the Spirit that the natural Jerusalem and Zion are only a shadow of a heavenly Zion and Jerusalem.  King David, is a type of Christ that has come to reclaim and conquer what satan has stolen and gained possession of.  Zion represents the spirit of man which was God breathed and owned but which fell into the enemies’ hands through Adam’s disobedience.  Christ Jesus is the King of Kings that reclaimed Zion upon Calvary.  Hebrews 2:8-11 says, “and put everything under his feet.”

In putting everything under him, God left nothing that is not subject to him. Yet at present we do not see everything subject to him. 9But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

10In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. 11Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers.”

That is a scripture to meditate upon for there is a wealth of truth in what is said here.  Jesus conquered Zion which is represented in the redemption of mankind.  Christ is that horn, that “strong one”  Psalms 132:17 refers to, but more than that, He has become the eternal resting place and dwelling place of God.  The awesome thing is that we are “in Christ” which brings us into and makes us a part of Zion.  Didn’t Hebrews 2 just say, “In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers.”  We, the IN-Christed Ones, are that Zion and Jerusalem of God.  We are His holy people and the place of His habitation, because our spirits are in Christ.  What we await is the New Jerusalem, the city of God to come down out of the spirit and manifest itself in this natural world.  Christ, Himself will lead that descent.  

Revelations 21:1-4 declares, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”  Do you see that New Jerusalem is not just a location, it is a person.  It is the bride of Christ.  Christ in His people.  Praise God! 

There could be so much more written and said about this, but I just felt Father wanted to give us a foretaste of what Zion is all about.  

 
Blessings,
kent

Only Believe

January 24, 2014

 

Only Believe


Matthew 5:35-36

While he yet spake, there came from the ruler of the synagogue’s [house certain] which said, Thy daughter is dead: why troublest thou the Master any further? As soon as Jesus heard the word that was spoken, he saith unto the ruler of the synagogue, Be not afraid, only believe.

 

 

This is the word the Lord is speaking into my heart.  How much of our lives are filled with fear, doubt, unbelief, lack of confidence and feelings of inadequacy?  How far are we living under our potential in Christ because of these limitations in our lives?  We still judge and evaluate our lives out of the standards of the world.  Many of us look at ourselves and all we see is our weaknesses, our inabilites, our poverty and our lack.  We walk about with our head hung down in shame and condemnation because we only see what we don’t have and what we are not.  

Beloved, that yoke and that mentality are the chains and prison of the enemy.  Why are we so willing to believe the lie rather than believe God’s Word about us?  I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of living in the limitation of my natural man and little thinking.  Isn’t it time that we step out into the awesome expanse and possibilities of God’s promises and word?  Little faith and lack of faith are accompanied by one thing, fear.  Fear equals one thing and that is spiritual defeat.  When we are fearful and unbelieving we cannot and will not embrace the powerful possibilities and promises of God.  

The children of Israel, after they came out of Egypt, could have entered in and possessed their inheritance forty years sooner had it not been for their fear and unbelief.  Moses sent twelve spies into Canaan in order to spy out the land, ten of them came back with a natural minded mentality.  Only two came back with a God mentality of faith.  Because the people embraced and believed the report of the ten spies they failed to enter in because of unbelief.  They all saw the same thing, why were there reports and recommendations different?  Ten of the spies saw the giants in the land and the fierceness of the people.  Joshua and Caleb saw it with the eyes of faith.  While they agreed there were giants in the land they saw how much greater and bigger their God was than these people.  They knew that if God went before them, even the giants of the land would be no match for them.  Are we still living in that mentality where we are cowering down to the giants in our land and in our lives?  We will never see the supernatural in our lives as long as we are living in that realm of fear and doubt.  Isn’t it time we got up off our defeated bottoms and begin to declare with authority and faith the Word of our Almighty God?  In our complacency and apathy we can dwell quietly in the shadow of our oppressor who has discouraged us from the great things that God has for us.  We have to be willing to fight the good fight of faith if we want to see the benefits and the power of our freedom in Christ.   Many of us are no different than the people who have lived under a dictatorship, it has become such a way of life, and even though it is miserable we have accepted it as the norm.   Yes, it is true when you rise up in faith and begin to press into what is your inheritance in Christ you will be met with great opposition, but who are you looking at, the enemy or your God that goes before you into battle?  We are the sons of God, why are we still content to wallow in the world’s mess and bondage?  Romans 8:17 says, “And if children, then heirsheirs of God, and jointheirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.”  

Are you going to suffer in the process, probably?  Did Christ Jesus suffer to conquer sin and death for us?  Yes.  Are we any better than Him?  

Romans 8:18-21 goes on to declare, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time [are] not worthy [to be compared] with the glory which shall be revealed in us.  For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected [the same] in hope Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.”  How can we set creation free when we ourselves are still living in the bondage and intimidation of the enemy who wants us only to look at what we have not, rather than what we do have in Christ.  We have the capability of possessing kingdom promises if we will rise up in the faith and confidence of our God and His Word and by the power of His might to go in and possess it.  What does it take?  ONLY  BELIEVE!   

 
Blessings,
kent

The Name of the Lord

May 31, 2013

Proverbs 18:10
The name of the LORD [is] a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.

The Name of the Lord

The Messenger bible states it this way, ” God’s name is a place of protection—
good people can run there and be safe.” The man and woman of God who walks with the Lord come to know that they abide in the name that is above all others. It the name of all authority, power and lordship. It is the name beneath which every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. What is so awesome to us as believers is that He has imparted His very name into us. He has birthed us in His DNA and He has purposed us to rule and reign with Him. Many of us struggle with this because we still see ourselves after the flesh with all of its flaws, weaknesses and failures, but God see us after the Spirit. More importantly than how we perceive that we are, is how He sees us for what we shall be and already are in His eyes. As we walk into our destiny we must see much more with His eyes and much less with ours. Paul even says in 2 Corinthians 5:16, ” Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we [him] no more.” It is in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ that we are coming into spiritual authority and awareness. He is our place, not only of refuge and safety, but of power, authority and strength. We not only have a safe place to hide in Him. We have a mighty authority and strength to war out of Him.
Sometimes our church theology and mentality is all about escaping the woes of this world, but Jesus came and died so that He might raise up an overcoming people. We face adversity so that our hands may be trained in spiritual warfare. God is raising us up to see our victory, not our defeat. In Judges 15:11 Samson has paid back the Philistines for what they had been doing to Israel. The Philistines are coming down and the people of Israel are afraid because Samson has stirred up the enemy and the oppressors of God’s people. He has done ticked them off. “Then 3,000 men of Judah went down to the cleft of the rock Etam and said to Samson, Have you not known that the Philistines are rulers over us? What is this that you have done to us? He said to them, “As they did to me, so have I done to them.”” Many of us as Christians have this same mindset as the children of Israel in that day. We are passive and we don’t want to tick off the devil. Just leave him alone and maybe he will leave us alone. Who was really the Lord of Israel, the Philistines or the Lord God Almighty? Who is truly the ruler over us? God is raising up a people as Samson who know their might and power in the name and authority of their God. Do you know your destiny, your authority and your purpose? It is not in kow-towing down to the enemy. If you are experiencing adversity it is so that you might experience victory. If you are being put to death in your flesh, it is so the life of Christ might be made manifest through your mortal body. It is not our flesh God seeks to protect, it is the integrity of His Name.
Romans 8:1 says, ” THEREFORE, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.” It is in the name, the nature, the character, the authority and the Spirit that we stand vindicated and empowered by the Lord Jesus Christ. Your life is hidden in the Rock of Jesus Christ. He is your habitation and stronghold. He has created you and called you out not to just exist in His salvation, but to triumph and overcome through it.
Fear not the enemy and the adversary of your soul. It is the Lord God Almighty that goes before you into battle. When you go forth in the authority and obedience to that Name you will not know defeat, but only victory even as David went up against Goliath. 1 Samuel 17 says, “Then said David to the Philistine, You come to me with a sword, a spear, and a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the ranks of Israel, Whom you have defied. 46This day the Lord will deliver you into my hand, and I will smite you and cut off your head. And I will give the corpses of the army of the Philistines this day to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. 47And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saves not with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and He will give you into our hands.
48When the Philistine came forward to meet David, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet the Philistine.” In the power of the Name of the Lord He is teaching us, not only His safety, but His authority. He is teaching our hands to war in the Spirit. He is teaching us not to shrink back from the battle, but to run quickly toward our oppressors and giants, because the battle is the Lord’s. The Lord is a strong tower and because you are in Him you have victory in your life today. You are the head and not the tail, the blessing and not the curse, the conqueror and not the conquered and yea though all of hell rise up against us, ” Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us. (Romans 8:37)

Blessings,
kent

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