GOD’S WAY TO PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT [PT-2]

…. Being At Rest … Living An Accepted Life

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Jesus

God wants to change us!


In part 1 we learned that when we are Born Again Our Heavenly Father has placed His Spirit in us and through His Spirit He wants to conform us into His image; His Way of thinking, looking at our lives, and acting. He wants us to be transformed taking on His heart and exhibiting the Fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives. We are to become like Him.


In part 1 I mentioned that, in my view, the Body Of Christ today seems more focused on:

A] Chasing the provision verses chasing the Provider. This manifests itself in pursuing self-effort as opposed to receiving His Grace; operating under His power.


B] We seem more focused on rationalizing our way through life [self-effort] than acquiring revelation from the Word of God in order to live life His Way.


Take Joshua as an example. In Joshua 5:13-15 the account of the conquest of Jericho begins with the appearance of the “Commander Of The Army Of The LORD.” This encounter shows first, that God’s sovereignty and grace is FREE; second, that He and not Joshua controls the ensuing action;  and third, that Joshua is the servant of the same God that appeared to Moses in the burning bush. Jesus in this encounter encourages Joshua, but He makes it crystal clear that HE is not under Joshua’s command. Jesus came not to take sides but to take over. It’s as if Jesus is telling Joshua that HE called them to occupy the Promised Land and that HE was going to supply everything that they needed to do so; so REST in My provision, I will do all the heavy lifting.


Also we read in scripture that, 
“As He [Jesus] is so are we in this world”Jesus is at rest, sitting at the right hand of the Father. If He is at rest so should we be.

“From birth, our hearts are idol factories”, John Calvin.
It appears by our behavior that we hit this planet in pursuit of the created, 
searching forsatisfaction; that which only can be found in the Creator.

When I ask people how they are doing, they often reply, “Busy.” We define ourselves by what we do rather than by what Christ has done. The result is that we are weary and restless.Many of us find ourselves coming back from a week’s vacation needing a vacation from our vacation. A day (or week) off is not enough it seems to g
ive our souls the deep rest it longs for. Jesus gives us this invitation, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” in Matthew 11:28.

When I look back on my life prior to taking Jesus’ advice and “Come to Him …”, I see a person that was weary and heavy laden by the endless pursuit of idols. Every idol promises us a rich and satisfied life, to its fullest—but in the end causes us to sacrifice everything in pursuit of it. My Bible reads, 
“There is a way that seems right to a man but in the end it leads to death”The cost is often seen in everyday weariness, anxiety, and frustration. What we really need to do is rest in the Savior’s grace who has sacrificed everything for us up front and can give us life and life to its fullest every day, as well as for eternity. Remember He is the one that proclaimed from the cross, “It is finished”.

The gospel gives us that rest. The pursuit of idols is a relentless and endless pursuit of acceptance whereas 
the gospel gives us a position of acceptance in Christ Jesus. We already have in Christ Jesus all the acceptance, security, and hope that every idol promises, but can never deliver.

The gospel frees us to work from a position of acceptance versus in pursuit of acceptance [Psalm 103: 1-5]. The first leads to rest, the latter to restlessness.

It seems that we can 
live our lives in one of three ways:

                            1. BEING REACTIONARY—passively dominated by urgencies and pushy people. Our life becomes dominated by the tyranny of the urgent. This results in a life that is a frazzled mess: disorganized, without a sense of priorities, full of half-finished tasks, tardiness, and at the very least a frantic lifestyle. This is a life in which our compulsions cause us to exceed our calling and step outside the will of God for our lives.

                            2. LIVING IN CONFORMITY—succumbing to the fear of man and just being and doing what everyone else wants. This results in a boring life where everyone but God is pleased, and the person who is easily pushed around keeps busy and seemingly productive, but not passionate or free or truly productive in God’s Kingdom.

                           3. BEING AT REST – we gain our acceptance through the revelation of God’s Word. When we live our lives from the position of acceptance instead of the pursuit of acceptance, we allow the Creator and King of the universe to be Lord of our calendars. We live in response to who Christ is and what He accomplished for us on the cross [Psalm 103]. We allow the Lord of the Sabbath [Rest] to set our schedules, not the tyranny of the urgent. This gospel truth empowers us to say no to our compulsions and say yes to Christ. This gospel truth frees us to love people more deeply because we don’t need them for our own acceptance. It frees us to love people when they are least capable of loving us and when they need our love the most. The gospel frees us to live our lives out in a radically different way.

One of the great myths we all fight is that if we take frequent time off, we will be less productive. The opposite could not be more true. 
We all have limited physical, emotional and spiritual capacities. We are not human doings but human beings.

I have found that the best way to gauge whether I’m 
working from a position of rest is to ask, “What is my relational capacity?” Am I often frustrated, impatient, anxious or angry?

When I am working from a position of rest, I find myself filled with and manifesting 
love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control[The Fruit of The Spirit]. When I am working in pursuit of acceptance, I find just the opposite takes place in my soul. The gospel reminds us that Jesus is enough, more than enough, so rest.

The gospel frees us to work from a position of acceptance versus in pursuit of acceptance 

His Grace is sufficient for us.


Live in His Rest!


Len


Jesus said, “If any of you wants to be My follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross and follow Me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for My sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it”.
 
Jesus said, “If you love Me, you will obey My commands”.

Are you ready to make a commitment to do personal development His Way?


                                Personal Development Wisdom Principles 
                                                                                     ………. Building on a Solid Foundation

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