Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Convinced, Part 2 - His Ability

Well over a year ago, I had the privilege of talking with a small group of wonderful ladies at Bear Creek United Methodist over dinner about how to be convinced of Jesus.  It was a message of power and there are three parts to it.  If you want to read the details, go here.

I've been coming back to this teaching recently and it being Advent drives it home further.  In the Scriptures from Matthew and Luke that reflect on Christ's birth, a couple of key people were convinced God finally entered humanity and gave us salvation through the baby in Mary's arms.  People who'd literally been waiting on a promise God gave them FOR YEARS, Simeon and Anna.  They knew God was able but they had to trust He was willing to show them the proof.  They stuck around and were rewarded with Jesus.

We believe in and celebrate Christ this time of year.  We worship Him, as the Savior who is good and gracious and saved us from sin.  Yet, sometimes we stop there.  I know it because I've walked around with doubt in my own heart, especially at Christmas.  I wondered what the point is, with all the commercialization.  I "scrooged up" when I saw tinsel and holly, doubtful even in this part of the year made for Christ, He still acts on behalf of His people.

It took a fresh infusion of His love a few months back for me to clear away the doubt; to live in full belief He is good all the time.  Not just when things are going well and prayer is so obviously answered.  I mean, walking around every minute of the day knowing in my heart AND head He is good.  With that goodness comes the realization of the fact that God is not only able to do all He promises but He is willing to do it....right here....right now.

That kind of revelation makes the universe shift on its axis.  When you become convinced the Lord of Creation is willing to do things for you, the planets line up.  Your internal (and external) eyes clear and when the situations that usually set you off down long, dark roads pop up, you grab them by the throat and say, "Wait a minute.  Not so fast, buddy."

It is only your perspective that changes at first, but soon your circumstances catch up because by believing right, you start acting right. Conviction sends ripples of truth into eternity that get bigger and bigger.  You walk carrying feeling the reality of the verse, "No weapon formed against me will prosper," in your hands.  You mean it, in a Dirty Harry kind of way, no matter how big the gun the enemy points in your face.

You feeling lucky, punk?

Confidence is not arrogance.  Godly confidence is the opposite: humility.  It comes from knowing the One True King, certain He will not only act for our best interests, but that He is already acting.

If you were convinced that Jesus is not only able, but WILLING to do all He did in the Scriptures for you, what would change?

I said it in last week's post "But God": bad stuff doesn't come from God.  It is a result of what happened in the Garden - from the disobedience of Adam and Eve and from the enemy trying to get back what he lost.  He can only do that if we are destroyed.  I view life that way because I know God to be perfectly good.  And if God is perfectly good, then bad absolutely doesn't come from Him.

Yes, God uses bad things to shape His people.  Yes, He allows discipline to occur.  (Notice I did not say punishment, condemnation or mockery).  Yes, He tests our faith, but only to bring up and out the garbage trapped in our wavering hearts.  It is only to cleanse and fill us with more of Himself.  You don't have to look too far back in your Bible to see that when God's people turn (back) to Him, He brings them out of their horrible circumstances.  Not instantaneously, but it does happen.

They had to do the work of believing and acting out of that conviction, even when it didn't makes sense.

I have not always been willing to do the work, but I am now.

Are you?  Are you ready to believe God is not only able but WILLING to bring about His promises, into your life....right now?

Leave your answer in the comments....

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