>State of the Life

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On the occasion of my birthday (no need to say how old I am, though the song may possibly give you a clue), it seems appropriate to evaluate the “state of my life.”
Does not need to be long – here is the summary:
If I was any better, I’d be dead
There has never been a time in my life when I’ve been more joyous (and happy…not the same thing, by the way). I love life, I love my family, I love what I get to do for a “job.”
Most importantly, I’m “in Christ” and learning what that means. As never before, I understand it is not about doing, but rather about being. It is not about focusing on what I do “for Christ,” but rather on what He has done for me. It is not about striving to become, but trusting to be what I already am.
For many years Colossians has been my favorite book, and these verses are my favorite of the favorite, with three favorite words/concepts bolded:
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, (10) so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. (11) May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, (12) giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. (13) He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, (14) in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
 
 QDT. Qualified…delivered…transferred. That’s my position. I need to increasingly trust that, share that, live that.
And so, if I may, do you.
 
There are struggles; failures; defeats…but they are all temporary…”this, too, shall pass.” But the shepherd of my soul is good, faithful, wise, and omnipotent. And I am learning more each day as I read His Word, listen to others, and pray.
And I am blessed beyond belief.

>Humbling Truth, Joyous Truth, well, Just Truth

>Today is my physical birthday. I had nothing to do with my conception, development, and birth.


January 30, 1974 was my spiritual (re)birthday. I had nothing to do with my conception, development, and (re) birth.


Salvation is of the Lord.


Spurgeon says it best:


Salvation is the work of God. It is he alone who quickens the soul “dead in trespasses and sins,” and it is he also who maintains the soul in its spiritual life. He is both “Alpha and Omega.” “Salvation is of the Lord.” 


If I am prayerful, God makes me prayerful; if I have graces, they are God’s gifts to me; if I hold on in a consistent life, it is because he upholds me with his hand. 


I do nothing whatever towards my own preservation, except what God himself first does in me. 


Whatever I have, all my goodness is of the Lord alone. 


Wherein I sin, that is my own; but wherein I act rightly, that is of God, wholly and completely. If I have repulsed a spiritual enemy, the Lord’s strength nerved my arm. Do I live before men a consecrated life? It is not I, but Christ who liveth in me. Am I sanctified? I did not cleanse myself: God’s Holy Spirit sanctifies me. Am I weaned from the world? I am weaned by God’s chastisements sanctified to my good. 


Do I grow in knowledge? The great Instructor teaches me. 


All my jewels were fashioned by heavenly art. 


I find in God all that I want; but I find in myself nothing but sin and misery. “He only is my rock and my salvation.” 


 Do I feed on the Word? That Word would be no food for me unless the Lord made it food for my soul, and helped me to feed upon it. Do I live on the manna which comes down from heaven? What is that manna but Jesus Christ himself incarnate, whose body and whose blood I eat and drink? Am I continually receiving fresh increase of strength? Where do I gather my might? My help cometh from heaven’s hills: without Jesus I can do nothing. As a branch cannot bring forth fruit except it abide in the vine, no more can I, except I abide in him. 


What Jonah learned in the great deep, let me learn this morning in my closet: “Salvation is of the Lord.” 


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