The one he planted to provide a hedge hide the unsightly view of an old landfill; the other to provide shade to rest under near a cool mountain stream which ran down beside his fields. As the two trees grew, both produced began to flower and bear fruit. One day the farmer decided to gather the fruit from the tree nearest his house — the one used to provide a hedge from the landfill. As he brought the fruit inside the house, he noticed that it was a little deformed — the symmetry of the fruit was not very good, but still the fruit looked edible.
Later that evening, while sitting on his porch the farmer took one of the pieces of fruit for a snack. Biting into the fruit, he found it to be extremely bitter, and completely inedible. Casting the fruit aside he looked across the field to the other tree over by the mountain stream. After walking across the field, the farmer took a piece of the fruit from the other tree and bit into it. Find the fruit to be sweet and delicious he gathered several more pieces of fruit and took them to the house. The fruit was greatly affected by the nutrition of the root. Just as the tree grew by the landfill to be bitter, and the tree by the stream produced sweet fruit, so the Christian has a choice.
He can either put down his roots into the soil of the landfill of fleshly pursuits, or into the cool refreshing stream of the person of Jesus Christ. We must understand that the root bears the fruit. The fruit of the Christian is the outward evidence of the inward motivation. When you walk with the Lord you can be sure that you will receive the nourishment needed to produce healthy, growing fruit. This morning we will look at 5 benefits of Walking with the Lord.
How to Walk with the Lord. We pick up this letter where we concluded last Sunday [read vs. We find here Paul making the statement that they, both Paul and Timothy have not stopped praying for the faithful saints at Colosse. Paul writes that they have not ceased to pray for them. Instead, we read this realizing that Paul viewed everything in life in relation to God.
As Paul went thru life encountering everything in life — good and bad, what he saw prompted him to prayer in some way. When we hear of bad news our reaction is to pray for God to act in that situation because we know that God cares. When we hear of good news, our response is praise to God because we know that He was glorified. When Paul thought or heard of one of the beloved churches, it moved him towards prayer with God. We could say that a person who prays without ceasing is constantly aware that God is constantly working. The other side of praying without ceasing is being aware of the needs of those around us.
The Hope of God’s Light
We need to be aware of the needs of others. We need to be able and look at others surroundings and understand what they are going thru. Illustration: There is a ministry in Waco that will take a group of teenagers and take their money away and any other possessions they may be carrying. They will then give them some rules such as stay in a group together and then they will drop them off for the evening — overnight on the streets of Waco. The unrest in my conscience was the Holy Spirit cross-examining me as I tried to rationalize my behavior. What I had thought was forceful leadership, He was identifying as the sins of impatience and unjustifiable anger.
I knew that taking scriptural action was the only choice I could make that would please my Lord. I confessed my sin to Him and appropriated his forgiveness.
I drove down to the office complex where my associate and his team were located and asked their forgiveness. We cried and laughed and prayed together, sensing a fresh outpouring of God's love in our midst. Then we talked through our mutual needs and found a way — as teammates — to rearrange priorities and accomplish the task — on time! That is what the Christian life is all about - just keeping Christ on the throne. You do this when you understand how to walk in the control and power of the Holy Spirit, for the Holy Spirit came for the express purpose of glorifying Christ by enabling the believer to live a holy life and to be a fruitful witness for our dear Savior.
As I have said previously, to be sure you are filled with the Holy Spirit, you need to remember two important words: command and promise. The command is found in Ephesians ,. Be filled Living Bible. Ask him for anything in line with his God's will. On the authority of God's command you know that you are praying according to His will when you ask Him to fill you — to control and empower you.
Therefore, you can expect him to fill and empower you on the basis of His command and promise provided that you genuinely desire to be filled and trust him to fill you. Remember that the Holy Spirit already dwells within you if you are a believer. You do not have to ask him to come into your life; he is already indwelling you. Your body was a temple of God from the moment you became a Christian. Then continue to breathe spiritually, exhaling whenever the Holy Spirit reveals sin that you need to confess and inhaling as you go on walking in the fullness and control of the Spirit by faith.
Some Christians breathe spiritually faster and more often than others.
- Consuming Fire (The Kevin Bridges Spiritual Warfare Series).
- Benefits of Walking in the Light - Today Daily Devotional;
- The Seventies Rocked.
- A K.I.S.S. Guide To Retirement Investing!
Do not depend upon feelings. Tied as they are to your ever-changing circumstances, feelings are unreliable in evaluating your relationship with God. The unchanging promises of God's Word, not your feelings, are your authority. A train is a good illustration of the relationship between fact, faith and feeling. Let us call the train engine "fact" — the fact of God's promises found in His Word.
- The Hope of God's Light!
- The light shows me the truth.
The fuel car we will call "faith" — your trust in God and His Word. The caboose we will call "feelings. As fuel flows into the engine, the train runs. It would be futile and, of course, ridiculous to attempt to pull the train by the caboose. In the same way you, as a Christian, should not depend upon feelings or emotion live a Spirit-filled life.
Rather, God wants you to simply place your faith in his trustworthiness and the promises of His Word. Feelings are like the caboose — they are important but are designed to follow a life of faith and obedience. Jesus promised all who obey Him, "Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him. But you should never depend on feelings or seek after an emotional experience. The very act of looking for an emotional experience is a denial of the concept of faith, and whatever is not of faith is sin.
To summarize then, you can know that your are filled with the Holy Spirit by trusting in God — His command and promise — and you can go through life with that assurance. Bill Bright, co-founder of Campus Crusade for Christ. All rights reserved. Understand how you can know God personally. What is Christianity? Learn the basics of what Christians believe. Dealing with Life's Questions Explore answers to life's biggest questions.
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Walking in the Footsteps of Christ | Truth Or Tradition?
Experiencing the Adventure The Christian life is so simple that we stumble over the very simplicity of it, and yet it is so difficult that no one can live it. Bill Bright. Here is His promise: I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. The Secret is Something Called "Spiritual Breathing" One of the most important truths of Scripture, the understanding and application of which has enriched my life as has no other truth, is a concept which I like to call "Spiritual Breathing.
You become a worldly Christian again when you develop over time an attitude of unbelief - when you set your heart against believing the promises of 1 John and 1 Corinthians No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.
But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it. This was at the heart of the apostle Paul's moment-by-moment experience: I have been crucified with Christ: and I myself no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the real life I now have within this body is a result of my trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. At this point I had a choice to make.
Then came the toughest part. The command is found in Ephesians , Be filled Living Bible And the promise is found in 1 John , Ask him for anything in line with his God's will.