COME CLOSER

There is nothing outside of Jesus which is of any benefit to you.  Everything you want from God comes from Jesus.  The Apostle Paul’s journey through life is one of encountering and experiencing Jesus.  The more you taste of him, the more you want to taste of him. God intends to reveal His will to you and you can walk in confidence and in assurance of what He has made you to be.

The letter of the Colossians reveals Pauls incredible grasp of who Jesus is.  “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation”. (Colossians 1:15)  “He is before all things, and in him all things hold together”. (Colossians 1:17)  “For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in Heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross”. (Colossians 1:19-20)  Jesus is the perfect representation of who God is; he is the source and centre of everything. He deserves all our worship.  God wants everyone and everything to be reconciled to Him.

As awesome as Jesus is, do you realise you too are destined to be like Him? Pause and think about that for a moment. Yes, He is working with you and in you so that His glory, the glory of God, is shed through you even on the grey days. How do you discover who God has made you to be? It is “through intimacy with Him”. You need to lay aside your own opinion of yourself and other people’s view of who you are and align yourself to what God says about you.

There are no spare parts in the body of Christ. Every body part is significant and needed.  The enemy wants you to think of yourself as nothing but you need to know that you were chosen before the foundation of the world, you are made in Gods image and you are joined to the rest of the body in community. Know that you are valuable and precious and that God wants to use you and pour His life into you.

You are the fragrance of Jesus wherever you go.
You are a vessel carrying the presence of Jesus. You have Gods DNA within you and He wants to reveal part of Himself in and through you. You can be a catalyst in your environment because He has equipped you to be so.  The world sees Him through you and you are to be who you are made to be in your unique design.  You are being transformed from one degree of glory to another, “Now praise God and remember that you reflect Gods glory and are being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory”. (2 Corinthians 3:18)

It is vital for you to be continually connected to Jesus. If you are disconnected from him, you can do nothing. “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me. I am the vine, you are the branches”. (John 15: 4-5).

Abiding means that you choose to become immersed more in Jesus Christ and what he has got for you. You become changed from the inside. In his presence there is no fear because “Perfect love casts out fear” (1 John 4:18). Time spent with him is never wasted, rather you overflow as you become filled up with him.

No matter how much you mess up, Jesus will forgive you if you confess honestly and humbly. There is fresh grace for you every new day, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end, they are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness”. (Lamentations 3:22-23)  Today, God invites you to come closer and not to be content with what you have now. There is always more! What you have already received is just a portion of what is available. Just as fresh manna was provided every day for the Israelites, you too cannot live on yesterday’s manna.

Remember, you do not need to go to a physical place to encounter God because you are now yourself inhabited by the Holy Spirit. Be a constant inspiration to others and allow his glory to shine out of you as you experience his goodness. You will see victory in your spheres of influence and God is placing the agenda of Heaven in your heart.  Will you submit to God the skills and gifts which he has given to you to advance his kingdom?  Are you willing to give all to him as a sacrifice?
203 Connect and Reflect.
1.      On a day to day basis, how can you practically continually abide in Jesus?
2.      In what ways if at all, have you become content and satisfied with what you have spiritually?
3.      What steps do you think you need to take to pursue more of God?
4.      There are several references to the ‘glory of God’ in this reflection. What does this mean to you?
After you have discussed this, consider the following meanings from Strong’s concordance:
v  Giving God due praise, honour and majesty.
v  Declaring one’s gratitude to God.
v  The splendour and heavenly brightness which surrounds God and with which the face of Moses was made luminous. This also refers to the appearance of Jesus at the transfiguration.
v  Shekinah glory – A bright cloud by which God made manifest to men his presence and power on earth.
5.      Now praise God together using your own meanings of the glory of God and those above remembering that you reflect God’s glory and are being transformed into his likeness with ever increasing glory. (2 Corinthians 3:18)
6.      What negative words have been spoken over you in the past?  How have these impacted on your life?
7.      Make a declaration reading out the following facts about you and then take some time afterwards to pray for one another:
v  I am a new creature in Christ: old things have passed away; behold all things are become new. (2 Cor. 5:17)
v  I have died and have been raised with Christ and am now seated in heavenly places. (Eph. 2:5-6)
v  I have been set free. I am free to love, to worship, to trust with no fear of rejection or being hurt. (John 8:36; Rom. 8:1)
v  The love of God has been shed abroad in my heart by the Holy Ghost. (Rom. 5:5)
v  I am anointed of God for ministry. Hallelujah! (Luke 4:18)
v  I do not have a spirit of fear; but of power, love and of a sound mind. (2 Tim. 1:7)
v  I don’t give the devil a foothold in my life. I resist the devil and he has to flee from me. (Eph. 4 27)
*The above declarations were taken from ‘Change your words change your life’ by Joyce Meyer.

203 Connect & Reflect @ ANCL No12:Thursday 27th April 2017 from 7:30pm to 9pm. All Welcome.

203 Connect & Reflect @ Home: You can also enjoy a personal 2 or 3 by simply inviting others to connect and reflect with you at home or any other place, date and time that works best for you.

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