So for me this keeps coming up over and over that last few weeks, so thought I'd share. Being a Christian is being saved, being a follower and doer is much harder. By technical terms you become a traitor to yourself, as you fight your thought, emotions, and beliefs at every turn.
The Requirements of Faith
The moment we trust Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, we enter into a life of faith. In other words, we live by the assurance that God is all He claims to be and will do everything He promises. Salvation is instantaneous, but it takes a lifetime to learn and understand what that entails.
As soon as we are saved, God begins what is known as sanctification, teaching us to be like Him. This is a process, as it takes time to learn to walk by faith, trusting what we cannot see.
Even with God’s Holy Spirit living inside of us, we nonetheless battle our flesh. We desire to do what God says and to see as He sees, but because we have behavior patterns left over from our old sinful nature, we will falter and do things in our own strength, according to our own rationale. We must choose daily to follow His way.
To grow in godliness, we must learn to listen to our Father. But since this is not a natural tendency, self-discipline is needed. It is best to set a specific time each day to meditate upon God’s Word. Eagerly expect Jesus to speak to you, and listen to what He is saying. Write notes in your Bible with the date and what the Lord has impressed upon you. Then, apply the truth you learn, and observe the results.
Hearing God’s voice and being in tune with His Spirit are vital parts of walking in faith. But these things don’t just happen; they require determined persistence. As with physical exercise, the more we strengthen our spiritual “muscles,” the more the process becomes part of who we are.
Bible in One Year: Isaiah 40-42
God's Promise for you
In Touch Ministries
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Posted 02 August 2016 - 07:52 PM
Growing in Faith
Our Heavenly Father desires that we grow spiritually from infancy to maturity. Yesterday, we talked about the discipline of listening to God. Today, let’s look at several more practices necessary for living a life in Christ.
• The Lord desires that we obey Him. Some of His teachings are easy to follow, while others are difficult. Choosing our own way might feel good at first, but the end result is always regret. On the other hand, every act of obedience builds faith.
• God teaches us to depend upon Him. In fact, He sometimes calls us to action in areas that seem humanly impossible. For instance, to forgive an atrocious act may feel beyond our ability. But when we cannot achieve what He requires, we rely on His strength to enable us.
• Our Father wants us to wait upon Him. We, on the other hand, want everything to happen according to our preferences and timetable. So there’s a temptation to manipulate circumstances, which typically makes a mess. The Lord’s way is best, and He desires for us to trust and be patient.
• Scripture teaches us to confess sin, repent, and learn from missteps. God doesn’t expect perfection, but He does want to see a healthy response to shortcomings.
The Lord longs for His children to have abundant, meaningful lives. For this reason, He sent His Holy Spirit to indwell, equip, and empower believers to reach their God-given potential. We can choose to cooperate with this plan or to live independently of His best.
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