Change, as the saying goes, is difficult sometimes. There are times in our lives when we welcome change, but it's still hard. When moving from student to worker, it's hard to get used to the new schedule and working EVERY day (even in the summer!!). There's a transition when going from dating, to engaged, to married that takes time for both people to adjust. Going from being totally independent to being a couple isn't always easy.
This transition is true in our discipleship. When we accept Christ as Savior AND Lord, we accept the guarantee of eternal salvation, and His Lordship over our lives. We start a walk of submitting our own will, desires, goals and objectives to His. Sometimes, they are the same. Sometimes, they are quite different. The growth in accepting Him as Lord is bending toward Him when we differ. And it can be difficult, especially at first.
The Book of Hosea has many stark lessons about transition. A Godly prophet was directed by God to take the known harlot, Gomer, as his wife. Not long after they married, Gomer went back to the lifestyle she had before she was a wife. Her title had changed, but she didn't see herself any different than before.
Far too often, that fits our walk in Christ. We accept Him, we get excited about serving Him, but eventually, we fall back into the habits and lifestyle we led before we came to Christ. Change is, after all, difficult.
We have to come to a point of recognition not only of who Christ is, but who we are in Him. Athletes and successful business people talk about visualization often. They offer that you have to see yourself as successful in order to reach a level of success. It's a true principle that applies spiritually as well as physically.
If we always see ourselves are unworthy sinners, we never aspire beyond that point. It becomes to easy to remain in the familiar. Recognizing sin isn't the same as living in it. Jesus said we are new creatures when we are born again. We are called joint heirs with Christ, His Bride.
Once we accept the name, we need to move to accept the role...the position. When a couple marries, they are no longer girlfriends or boyfriends but spouses....husband and wife. They are a family within themselves, with or without children. A whole new entity that didn't exist until they came together and offered vows before God. Now, the challenge is to bring the behavior and lifestyle to match the titles.
As we accept Christ, we become part of the Bride of Christ. We are no longer our own, but His. And He is ours. The passage below shares where Hosea confronts Gomer in her wanderings. God uses the comparison that He is no longer Baali - or 'my lord' but Ishi - 'husband' or 'champion'. This is the intimate level where God wants us to be. He already sees Himself. The challenge is for us to accept Him and ourselves at that level.
Lay down the past. Embrace the gift of the the present...the relationship...the fellowship. It's time to see ourselves new.
14 Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her.
15 And I will give her her vineyards from thence, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt.
16 And it shall be at that day, saith the Lord, that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali.
17 For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name.
18 And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.
19 And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies.
20 I will even betroth thee unto me in faithfulness: and thou shalt know the Lord.
Peace and acceptance to you today.
Lifeline is produced from the Evangelistic Ministry of in Jonesboro, GA. You are encouraged to share this message. The Fellowship Church website (www.fcchosengeneration.com) includes a link to the Lifeline Blog (www.lifelineatfellowship.blogspot.com) where you can find previous messages.
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Where Passions Become Reality
Because You Are a Chosen Generation
455 Hwy 138 W. Suite C
Jonesboro, GA 30238
Between GA Hwy 85 and US 19/41
Across from EJ Swint Elementary School
Church Website - http://www.fcchosengeneration.com