BY REV. JOSEPH M. MAY
So we are made new in Christ Jesus because of the Resurrection power of Christ has made us new and His Spirit lives within us (Romans 8:11). We have been set free but bond captive by the love of Christ.
So, if the old has passed away and the new has come, can you see the power of Christ in your life? Is it evident that Christ is alive in you or do you still carry around your decaying sin? Was His sacrifice not enough or are you still abusive to your wife with your words or do you wash your wife in the word (Ephesians 5:26)? Do you beat her as if she is your slave or do you lead as if she is treasured inheritance from the Lord (Proverbs 19:14)?
Does she bow her head in submission to you out of fear daring not to say another word because she is afraid of what will come out your mouth next or what hand will hit her this time or does she follow you as you follow the Lord (Ephesians 5:22-24)? Are you new in how you are being led? Is the Spirit leading you or are your emotions leading you?
Do you humbly submit to Christ Spirit and listen before you allow your emotions to rule and anger to lead you down a path that will bring no glory whatsoever to God (James 1:19-20)? Do you still make harsh comments to get your points across leaving anyone who hears you speak so broken inside they cannot function or do you speak the truth in love in the hopes of building your brother/sister in Christ up so they can walk forward in Jesus (Ephesians 4:15-16,29)?
Do you let what you hear determine how you feel and what you believe or do you actually consider the matter and seek the Lord (1 John 4:1)? Do you still make assumptions about others based off limited information or do you actually take the time to pray and lean on the understanding of Jesus (Proverbs 3:5-6)?
Are you still carrying around the weight of sin and seeking the temporary satisfaction it brings or laying aside any sin that would hinder you from being with Christ (Hebrews 12:1-2)? Do you still lie as if no one knows the truth or have you come to a place to confess your sin that you may be encouraged, held accountable, and walk firmly with the Lord (James 5:16)? Do you think on things that bring glory to God or do you still focus on past lovers, worry over the future, or ways to get over on people (Philippians 4:6-8)?
Or you still turning to alcohol to ease your mind, justify it by saying "just one more" or have you turned to the Holy Spirit to be a comforter (John 14:26)? So I ask you: Are you walking in the newness of Christ or are you still wearing the clothes of death?
Because God has reconciled you, you do not have to live as you once were. You can now live for Him. He has entrusted the message of the Gospel to you and it the message is most evident when it is visible in all the aspects in your life whether public or private.
He made you an Ambassador and to not gloat prideful about who you are where you came from but to humbly with all JOY! Extend to the others the great opportunity to be with Christ. You are the Righteousness of God, not a side piece, dime bag buyer, wet brain alcoholic, prostitute, abusive husband, abusive girlfriend, addict who can't kick the habit, pathological liar who does not want their secrets known, not some religious nut who can talk a good game but is nothing more than a scrub, not a bully who always wins, not a mockery of Christ, not a hypocrite, NO YOUR ARE SO MUCH MORE THAN THAT!
The death and resurrection of Christ was not in vain and without purpose in your life. The Power of Christ lives within you, to break you free from who you were in sin. You don't have to be abusive or abused, you do not have to be addicted or an enabler, you do not have to be smiteful but you can be loving.
You don't have to privately struggle with sin but you can be wrapped in the loving arms of a Savior who can transform every part of you, you don't have to be those things anymore ... my dear child you don't. So let us stop flirting with death in the adulterous relationship of sin and come to Jesus.
This article may be convicting to you and painful to read but I tend to find surgery is painful but beneficial to me in the long run. And the Lord is working on your heart right now. The time of playing the part of a Christian has ended, the time of private struggles is over, the time of just being "good" has run out. It is time to submit to Christ by simply saying, "Lord I surrender all and I will follow you all the days of my life! No more games, no more lies, I just want you."
I am challenging you here, Christian, as well as myself. No one is leaving reading this article unscathed. Through God's Word I am asking you to live for Jesus today. I'm imploring you to be so consumed by His Love that you put Him first and mean it. I want you walk in the Resurrection power of Christ and share His Truth.
You will need to rely on Christ because to endure this call because you will face afflictions, hardships, calamities, beating, imprisonment, riots, labors, sleepless nights and hunger to name a few. I am calling you to display purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, the Holy Spirit, genuine love, truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left. And it does not matter if you are shown honor or dishonor, praise or slander, treated as in imposter even when you speak truth, you are unknown by man by known by God, dying outwardly but being made alive within, serving unjust punishment, considered to be surrounded by sorrow yet rejoicing in Jesus, content in Christ and not your wealth, as a loser but really a winner I am calling you to do the work.
Friends if you are ready to meet the challenge and answer the call then let's begin the work and do the mission God has placed us here for. This is a rally cry for the Lakes area to cast of the religious molding and walk in the newness of Christ. This is a call for us to gather as an untied Body of Christ and share His Gospel. I implore you to join in the call and do the work because you love Christ, I offer you my email if you want to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) because I am serious about the mission, the newness of Christ, and answering the call. Join me and together let's see God transform the world.