Monday, September 28, 2009

The Measure of Our Walk

Beloved:

Some time ago I woke up with the following on my mind and in my spirit:

What is the measure of my (our) walk with the Lord” or how can I tell if I’m hitting the mark?  All I want to do is to serve the Lord, to walk with him in intimate fellowship and to love Him.

I’ve never found it to be a good idea to compare myself with others -- this is especially true when considering one’s walk, the word tells us to work out your salvation with fear and trembling:  


“Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence -- continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling.
Philippians 2:12 (NIV)


I always personalize this scripture by adding the word “own” to "work out your OWN salvation with fear and trembling."  Again, we need to develop our own relationship with God.


Comparing ourselves against another believers walk is contrary to God's word.  So the question remains “What is the truest measure of our walk with the Lord?”

Do you know?

Could it be having great faith?  Could be, the word says without faith it's impossible to please God:

"And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him."  
Hebrews 11:6  (NIV)



But my question isn't how to please God, it's about how to measure our walk -- one might even call it our obedience.  I don't believe the measure is how much we believe, or having great faith.  So the question remains.

How about the number of soul’s you’ve won for Christ? 

“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise.” 
Proverbs 11:30 (NIV) 

  
Clearly the great commission, spreading the good news of Christ Jesus is one of the most important things we are called to do as a believer.  We're promised rewards in heaven for winning souls for Christ -- but counting souls for Christ doesn't relate to our closeness. 
 
Could the measure be found in one of the awesome gifts of the Spirit, such as speaking in tongues? 

Now, brothers, if I come to you and speak in tongues, what good will I be to you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or word of instruction?
1 Corinthians 14:6 (NIV)


What about the gift of healing?  Wouldn’t it be awesome to simply wave your hand over a room or stadium of sick people, being an instrument of God’s power to heal, and then witness the entire gathering being healed of whatever was ailing them?  God has anointed many great men and women with the gift of healing; many of them eventually fell away making me wonder if they truly had an intimate relationship with God.

Of all the signs of our oneness with our Savior and our Lord, what would it be?

Would it be a fruit of the Spirit?

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law." 
Galatians 5:22 (NIV)



There shouldn’t be any hesitation, most likely your first thought was correct.  But when allowed to think about the answer too long, or to try and come up with some spiritual sounding answer, you quite possibly will have missed the obvious.  This can be embarrassing. 

Let me give you a hint: “How’s your love life?”

The Lord has been speaking to my spirit about the answer to this question for quite some time now.  In fact it finds its way into just about every conversation I have, every book I read or Christian radio show, podcast and TV program I listen to.

Simply put, I believe our ability to love one another is the truest measure of our walk and our relationship our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  After all it was He who left us with this one new command:

"A new command I give you: Love one another as I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."  
John 13:34, 35

True, and overwhelming revival necessary for the Lords return won’t happen until the entire body of Christ loves one another as He loves us. 
 
There’s no question, the greatest hypocrisy seen by the non-believer is our continued lack of love for each other; and just as great, is our lack of sincere love for the unsaved.  Such love must be demonstrated through our actions.  Jesus always showed his love through signs and wonders -- feeding the multitudes, healing those that were sick, casting out demons.  These were the works of a loving God, the same love that we're called to have for others. 
 
This is what the Apostle Paul had to say about love --


"If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.  If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing."
1 Corinthians 13 (NIV) 

Here's a sad example of our lack of love for one another --


Recently I had the opportunity to follow a discussion on Face Book between two believers over an important question posed by another believer.  Unfortunately it turned into a heated theological debate.  What was sad about the whole affair was that from the moment I read the question, I knew what was coming.  I wished I were wrong, but having been in the middle of, and witness to, the issue many times since I first received the baptism in Holy Spirit, I knew how it would end.  Yes, sometimes it’s important to hold your ground, and to tell your brother or sister that he or she and is following a false teaching, or is limiting God.  But this type of correction should not be in public and certainly not in a way that would cause those new or weak in the faith, or those non believers to see just how ugly we believers can be.

I'll be visiting the subject of love many times in this blog, which is why its names 1 John 4 . . .


Beloved, let us love one another,  for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 
1 John 4:7 (NIV)



Father God, please help me to see others as You see them, to love them as You love them.  Please give me a special anointing of grace and love through the Holy Spirit so that Jesus may be glorified.  I ask this in Jesus name.  Amen




4 comments:

  1. God's love for us is so unconditional and the world has taught us everything is conditional. When giving our lives to the Lord we are to renew our mind - our thoughts are no longer to be as the world view things. I've learned a long time ago if we think wrong we in turn believe that way. It's a good post I'll enjoy reading more of your posts in the future. Me~

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  2. you are invited to follow my blog

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