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Did you know your works do not make you holy, it is only by the blood of Yeshua and the gift of the holy spirit that we can achieve righteousness
The Chief II
(#154 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
“O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” (Romans 7:24)
Shaul’s further explanation of his reasons for confessing to be “chief of sinners” is seared into ones conscience with a proper perspective of the entirety of Romans chapter seven. Once the blazing light brings illumination, every false pattern of thinking is taunted by that light. Although some darkness may take years to be exposed, it was not so with Shaul and others; the others being those who submit and surrender to the truth that their own wicked inadequacies, apart from Yahshua the Messiah, will always be the whole of who they are.
Within your entire mindset and fleshly desires, a war is now being waged, which has often been discussed. Yet, the remedy which brings power is so clearly missing and seldom realized in these discussions. People forget. Somehow, the culture of those who profess to be Christians has come into this false, yet unified belief, that along the journey they call “faith,” they became “good” enough themselves. As if over time their personal wickedness, fueled by the ever-present ego, suddenly became a holy ego. It is not so loved one, not so at all! Power comes to those who continually acknowledge within that a complete takeover of the spirit, soul, and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23) is absolutely necessary if they are to have a shot at exercising the power they have been promised (Ephesians 1:19-20). In other words, they follow the Spirit of Yahweh, through Messiah in them, with the absolute realization that not one ounce of their own personal will can exist if they are to manifest what has been offered through Yahshua.
“Thanks be to the Mighty One [the giver of the perfected mind], I [the redeemed mindset] have deliverance [the ability to leave behind self-will] through Yahshua Messiah [mind savior] our Master [headship in consciousness]! So then, with this same mind [redeemed, yet undone], I myself [the redeemed part] am a slave to the Law of the Almighty [perfected mind patterns], but with the flesh [self-reliant ego still present, sinful nature] I am a slave to the law of sin [self-satisfaction].” (Romans 7:24)
Death brings life! Is this not exactly what Yahshua proved to us?
(#153 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
“This is a trustworthy saying, and deserves all acceptance: Yahshua the Messiah came into the world to save sinners, of who I am chief.” (1Timothy 1:15)
Previous to Damascus (Acts 9:3), Shaul hated Yahshua and all that He stood for. It was not until a blazing (mind piercing) light (heavenly illumination) struck him, that Shaul came to understand Yahshua as his own Messiah. With a correct application of the timeline, we must pay very close attention to the timing of Shaul’s words above; “Of who I am chief.” Is Shaul calling himself chief sinner after his redemption? What’s going on here? Those who are sanctified in the Messiah Yahshua are called to be saints (1 Corinthians 1:2), yet Shaul is identifying himself as a sinner? Exactly! Shaul is really identifying the nature of his flesh (sinful nature; Galatians 5:16-21).
Shaul understood salvation in way that is very different than it is presented in today’s church. He would press on towards the goal of salvation, the upward call, (a completely renewed spiritual mind; Philippians 3:14), and in doing so would have never claimed to be “good,” for he believed Yahshua’s own words that not even He, the Messiah, was good, giving all glory to Yahweh alone (Luke 18:19).
“That in me first, Yahshua the Messiah might display all longsuffering, as a pattern to those who are going to believe on Him [Yahweh] for everlasting life.” (1 Timothy 1:16)
Shaul came to understand that he would be an example to many future generations of chosen ones. An example, which if understood correctly, would always leave you able and ready to say, “I am, in my sinful nature, the chief of sinners.” And this you would understand even after your personal confession that “Yahshua is my Messiah!” Why? Because it is only ever Yahshua “in you” that is your hope of glory (Colossians 1:27). Never would Shaul have meditated on some glory due to his own efforts, his own goodness, for it was through him that the Spirit spoke; “There is none righteous, no, not one.” (Romans 3:10) Shaul’s righteousness would be found only in the Mighty One through the Messiah (Philippians 3:9). Even after the light of Yahshua had shown on him, he would admit, “My best in my own strength is sin, nothing more.”
It is the “self” life directed by the ego that Yahshua claimed you must lose. As you continually reject any idea of your own goodness, the light of Yahshua, commanded by Yahweh Himself, will begin the takeover. This is a model prayer, which can be uttered by the humbled saints who, by love, have been forced to see this truth;
“Don’t let me be me any longer Father. Don’t let me think for myself. Let only Your Spirit, through the life of Your Son in me, make every decision. Please Father, don’t let my own will succeed.”
(#152 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
This is the title to this entire body of devotions, “Suffer Well!” The prevailing verse that is continually being brought into consciousness is Hebrews 2:10; For it was fitting for Him [that’s Yahweh], on account of Whom [Yahweh] all things are through, and Whom all things are from, in bringing many sons [that’s you] to glory, to lead the Prince [that’s Yahshua] of their [that’s you] salvation [saved mind] to perfection through sufferings.”
Yahshua, Who is our perfect example was made perfect through suffering. It would be ever so important to teach you according to the commanded precept that, even while suffering, “all things work for good” (Romans 8:28). And if suffering is good in its intended purpose, then we now hold a key to the perfected life, the perfected mind. Suffering is inevitably good and works for good. So, to rejoice in our sufferings would be the key.
To understand with inspired intellect that “If Yahweh only does what is good and perfect, then my suffering is intended to make me more like Him. His Son’s example of suffering demonstrates its holy intended purpose. In this, I can and will rejoice that my suffering is not for nothing.”
And so now, after so many devotions have been revealed to and within you, devotions that have taught you to lose your life (personal, ego filled desires), in order to find your life (a spiritually renewed mind), we felt an unction of the Spirit to remind you why we are all here together. It is to embrace every seeming pit fall, every valley experience, and every stumbling block, as a necessary encounter. Never see it as “warfare,” but instead as a spiritual encounter with a predetermined purpose. Suffering brings perfection loved one, and because we now know this, as it has been gifted to us by the Spirit to know, we do the supernatural; we suffer well.
We are just passing through. We have a better final place waiting for us.
Figure Me Out
(#151 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Though I Am to become predictable to you, it is only possible by My Spirit. Are all of your efforts and the cultivation of your faith focused on figuring Me out? Are you attempting to move My strong arm where you think it should be? When I tell you to seek Me, do you think it is so you can know My every move? Yes, My loved one, I do want you to operate according to My will. Be careful though; you must remember that My will overrides your wishes (hopes often steeped in “self” desire). My will has the last say. Do I have your permission to lead you right to the edge of My will, only to change course in the final hour? If the thought of this concerns you, then I need to remind you that My ways are higher than yours. They are better than and more perfect than yours (Isaiah 55:9).
May I give you an example? Oftentimes, you seek for only what My will is for your life. Perhaps you might even seek for the lives of those close to you. I am much bigger than that! I have a world vision in mind at all times, and it is very rare when one of My children seek according to My purposes alone, not mixed with their personal desires. A global plan for My body is paramount, but be of good cheer, I Am also concerned for the details of your life. I have your every desire in mind, even as I plan globally. I know all your needs ahead of time; every thought and every tear is collected (Psalm 56:8).
I have a word for all of you who are heartbroken, those who were so sure they had Me pinned down, those who had Me “figured out.” Yes, I never stopped being near to you. In time, you will see the bigger vision. You are not supposed to figure Me out; you are, instead, commanded to follow Me. Knowing My will means staying close to Me, as I do My work in and through you. Your obedience, your healthy fear, and love, all of these will open every necessary door, as I permit. Look at My ever globally focused Son. He was always attentive to Me, always doing as I say. He is the way, the truth, and the life (John 14:6). He is the way to Me, the truth about Me, and the life found in Me. Do as He did; be as He was. Leave the rest to Me. I do love you so very deeply. You will love My plan when I Am done; I promise. His shed blood guarantees it.
We are in a race and we must run this race to win and not give up. That is why we must do our best not to get distracted and pace ourselves to win the race. The prize is far greater than we can comprehend with our human minds. Eternity awaits us!
King of More
(#150 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
I met a man, a humble man. He was humbled by patterns of affliction. His wife, taken from him in a foreign country and jailed for reasons unknown to him. His four children, missing for months and only recently discovered scattered among friends and relatives. Yes, he himself imprisoned with no way of communicating with any of them. He says to me, “What can I do but trust? Every day I pray and wait, and that somehow I would hear some news. I pray that my wife is ok, and that she is soon reunited with the children. I pray that one day we will all be together again. Uphold me according to Your word, that I may live; and do not let me be ashamed of my hope. (Psalm 119:116)” He looked me in the eyes; I could see the depths of his soul. The word “surrendered” came to my mind. Like Job, everything was taken from him.
It is “natural” to consider such suffering and be grateful for what we have. It is the way we have programmed our minds, almost like “being content with settling.” We have these thoughts; “Well if he can be hopeful and he has it that bad, I feel ‘guilty’ for feeling bad. I should be more grateful, even though I desire more. Yes Father, I need to be content with what I have.”
Is this what Yahweh has for us? Is this more than we can ask for, think or imagine? (Ephesians 3:20) I declare that I would be amiss if I did not proclaim the contrary.
“You are the Father of more. You are the great I Am. You are the infinite One. I know this because You planted it in the heart You gave me. You have shown Yourself to be this way. For these reasons, I cannot settle. I want fullness of life, not just getting by. I need to believe in the abundant more Father. You are the King of more, and I come to You in obedience.”
Yes, my soul screams out “Abundance!” and with that Father, I leave it with You.
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
How strong is your faith? Do you ever doubt God? See this video…
(#149 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Abba, how I long for my love for You to become natural. I yearn for my obedience in praise and worship to become like breath to me, to be as oxygen. I hunger for my love to be unceasing, to become that which I need to never consciously consider. While awake or asleep, it is there. Is it because we cannot see You that this love we seek requires so much effort? Is it because we desire our own path more than Yours? Is it that Your Son’s death is not tangible to us in our hearts and soul? Are you keeping Yourself from us purposely? Though Your Son’s shed blood gives life to all who believe, do we treat this reality casually?
This I know Father; this I must confess: I am saddened by the amount of time I need to dedicate to simply believe that every word You speak is true, and that it applies to my life! And, that Your word will really take me to the higher places. I desire to cross over to this level of faith Father. I desire obedience that leads to healthy fear, admiration, trust, and love. My prayer is that I would attain all of these attributes towards You Father, and that they would be as natural as breathing.
I have another confession Abba. After so much seeking and so much effort to find You, I wonder; have I looked right past You? Am I making too much effort and not resting enough? Do I know how to receive Your love Father? Am I unwilling, for reasons beyond a conscious level, to accept Your love? My confession is this; I don’t know the answer to these questions Father. I don’t know why I cannot fill up my existence with You.
I wonder, at times, if You are hiding from me. Not in a way that a thief would hide, but like a Father who can’t wait to jump out and scream, “Here I Am. I’m real. I’m really here for you.” I desire that Father. If I am in error, correct me so I can find You. You know me; You know why I cry out to You. If I am anxious, it is for You. If I lose sleep, it is because I think of You. Perhaps, if I may ask this of You; could we have our own special language, one in which I could hear and communicate with You. I know Your word says, “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” (John 10:27) Help me believe that this means I can communicate with You with no doubting, with all second-guessing gone forever? May it be something intimate, powerful, and secure? May it be like my breath? I would like that Father. I leave this request at Your feet. So be it.
He who does not love does not know the Mighty One, for the Mighty One is love. (1 John 4:8)
(#148 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
I will never stop doing good to them, and I will inspire them to fear Me, so they will never turn away from Me. I will rejoice in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in this land with all My heart and soul. (Jeremiah 32:40-41)
My inspiration takes on many forms My child, so be on guard. It can incite a full spectrum of emotions. Some people obey swiftly and experience holy fear in proper time; others rebel and only slowly adapt. Those who resist require an inspirational nudge if you will. Although My nudging often feels uncomfortable, the fruit that blossoms from it is pleasing.
I Am a Father and I have appointed My Son as your good shepherd. He sits next to Me on His throne and reports to Me daily. We have a unified plan for your life. It is a good plan, specifically for you, My chosen child. Your walls are ever before Me; you are inscribed on the palm of My hand. (Isaiah 49:16) We have access to all you say and do. Nothing is missed. You must appreciate this greatest of gifts; not everyone shares the ability to call Me Abba, and call My Son friend (John 15:15).
I want to remind you of your main focus, your intended purpose. You have been appointed to bring honor and glory to Our Kingdom. Your thoughts and your actions point to Our thrones. How could it be otherwise? You share Our good news out of your zealousness for Us. Do you not expect others to look on and to analyze your witness? Do you not understand that the world desires your failure more than your success? “Why do they,” you ask? They want to believe Our Kingdom has nothing to offer them! Though they err, will you take the responsibility of knowing that this is the way of the world? Your actions cannot thwart Our eternal plans, yet you must behave as if can! Take responsibility for the injustice you bring to Our throne room. You will walk what I talk! I require this of you. Remember, I will inspire you to do so and “nudge” you if necessary.
Yes My loved one; it is as I say. My inspiration, My eternal touch, can be very heavy if needed. Glory is what We are due and glory is what We will have. This is a simple warning in love. If you are struggling with finding your purpose, might We suggest you slowdown in your effort to save the world and first find your place in it? Hint: your place is My call on your life! And remember, “Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent.” (Revelation 3:19) Make sure your inspiration is of Us, then perhaps you will inspire many others. Come! Ask! Receive! It is Our delight to guide you.
Do you really understand what tenderhearted really means? Please see this video…
The Way of Man II
(#147 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
A man and his wife enter the church. After the worship, the pastor begins to preach. The wife is fully engaged while the husband dozes off. He tries his best to stay awake. She nudges him when the service is over. They rise up and leave. For many weeks, this same pattern continues. The pastor notices the husband’s tendency and labels the man as disinterested in spiritual matters. He wonders why the man even comes. Others in the congregation have noticed and wonder the same.
Several weeks pass since the last time the man and his wife attend when she appears alone at a service. Afterwards, she finds the pastor and asks him if she could speak with him. The pastor willingly agrees and quickly discerns the meeting will be about her “disinterested” husband. He is ready to minister to her heart as needed.
As the meeting begins the pastor says, “I have not seen you in church for quite some time. How have you been?”
The lady, with tears streaming down her eyes says, “It’s my husband.”
“Yes, I figured that,” the pastor replies.
She continues, “You see. He has cancer. He is dying. He takes his medication and it makes him very tired and sleepy. He was embarrassed about coming and falling asleep so we’ve just stopped coming. He does not seem to have much time left and he wanted me to tell you something. He said that it made him so happy to be able to come and see you, to listen to you preach. You are his favorite teacher. He asked me to thank you.”
Never judge loved one. Never think you know what’s going on within someone, just by the external appearance of things. Caring takes time, and if you are willing to ask yourself the tough question, do you struggle with caring for others? Healing comes from a mind, spiritually redeemed, that can admit, “I don’t really care about other people as much as I should; help me Yahshua. Give me a heart (mind) that cares for others more than it cares for myself.”
Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. (John 15:13)
Can a Christian commit suicide and still be saved? Would a Christian commit suicide? This is not as easy as people make it seem, let’s learn more.
The Way of Man
(#146 from Suffer Well Devotional Series©)
Scene: Two men stranded on an uninhabited island.
One man says to the other, “We are never going to get rescued from this island.”
The other man replies, “Don’t worry, I tithe.”
“What?” says the first man. “What does tithing have to do with us getting off this island?”
The tither then explains; “I make a hundred thousand dollars a month.”
Perplexed, the first man says, “So since you make a hundred thousand dollars a month, Yahweh is going to rescue us?”
The tither, looking amused, says, “No, my pastor will.”
Think about what perceptions this gives you. What, if anything, is healthy in any of the mindsets portrayed in the above conversation? Pray and seek wisdom about the true way of the Father.
For the word of Yahweh is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)