Letting the Author finish His work …

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:1-2, ESV).

It is a simple fact that our Christian faith begins with Christ as the Author of our faith by and through his death and resurrection. There is no other basis for believing in Christ as our Savior … if He did not die for our sins and rise from the dead to give us power, abundant and victorious life, now and for eternity. Yet, He came and desires to be the perfecter and finisher of our faith as well. Thus our life of faith begins with Christ and continues as engages, teaches and perfects every detail as He completes the book that becomes our life on earth that we will then carry with us as we come perfected by His grace into His presence and rest for eternity. Christ is the Author and Finisher of our faith having perfectly completed each page and each chapter of the book that be written as our life.

It is so sad that many people who might profess Christ as the Author of their salvation, will at the same time not come to Him or yield to Him access to their lives … much less even allow Him to touch the pen to write, redeem and perfect their emotions, their temperament, their self-centeredness, selfishness and inability to wisely understand the things before them. Thus Jesus Christ as the Author of all things cannot bring the Holy Spirit to many of the descriptive pages of those that profess Him in their lives. Without access to the pen of our lives, Christ cannot release His love and our lives do not reflect much of the “Fruit of the Spirit” or the guiding and redeeming touch of His creative, restoring or wonderful workmanship.

Our Savior never envisioned or purposed that His followers would simply believe in the salvation He offers as the Author of their faith, not also let Him be the one that would complete, perfect and finish all matters and events in their life of faith. Faith as a believer and follower of Christ is not a onetime emotional or mental decision, acknowledgment or event. Our faith in Christ must be in all that He was and is and will forever be. The fact that Christ is not dead means He is alive to be with us, help us and most of all to perfect what we cannot do as we let God’s complete His workmanship in us (Ephesians 2:10).

We will not have dynamic and powerful faith, unless we trust Christ in all things and at all times, as we simply obey Him in all things and at all times by listening to His Spirit as we let God have His way with us through Christ as He remakes us into His masterpiece. We must release the pen of our lives into the hand of Christ, so that He may be, the Author of our faith as well as the Perfecter and Finisher of all things and all times until we come into His presence for eternity. Only when we let Christ as the author, finish and perfect our moments, our pages and the chapters of the book that will become our life … will we find the days of our lives filled with the hope, love and joy that only Christ can bring.

Suggested Reading – Hebrews 12

Not a thing you do but a place you go.


“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10, ESV)

      Amidst the compartments of time, work, priorities, intentions, passions, humor, interests and activities that fill up our days, can we find extra time to do another thing? Amidst our collections of mementos, odd little items of paper and poems with numerous souvenirs stacked up or boxed away, how many more things will we do that will yield more assortment of the things we did, now remembered. Are we what we do? Do our lives add up to what we have done or who we are in the things we do?

      Where along the journey of our days upon the earth, which will ultimately be recorded in the memories of others, do we find and refine the core of who we are? It is easy to do things we love that are of little substance and easy to get caught up in the swirl of activities running the spectrum between work and relationships. It also difficult to refrain from doing things we feel are obligations and commitments.
In this busyness of doing, we add more and more doing. Even in our faith, we can have a tendency to make this vital basis for our living, a thing we do. Faith, which we may claim as central to our living thus joins the countless other items on the shelves bending with the weight of all the things we do and call our living.

       God calls us to relationship. It is a redeemed relationship. He is not thing we do among all the other things we do. He is Father we go to for all peace, need, comfort and grace. A Living Son who walks alongside of us in all of our days with hope, redemption and restoration and a constant, consistent and empowering Counselor for every moment along the way. He dwells from a place of love as we go Him in prayer. He waits from a place of grace we carve out when we are still before Him and desire His will. He gives from a place of benevolence when we come to Him in need. He heals from a place of mighty strength as we trust and obey. He teaches from a place of truth when we go to Him for wisdom.

       Our faith is not a thing we do but a place we go to find, wait and dwell in our Heavenly Father’s love. Before Jesus Christ could ever do a single thing, He went and spent time in the presence of His Father in communing prayer and in the midst the vast demands of His ministry, He walked away to go to a place where His Father waited for Him. Before all things and in the midst of all things, our Living God and the relationship we have with Him, must be the place we go for all things.

“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went to a solitary place , where he prayed” (Mark 1:35, NIV).

Suggested Reading … Mark 1


Easter is more than a day!


“What a God we have! And how fortunate we are to have him, this Father of our Master Jesus! Because Jesus was raised from the dead, we’ve been given a brand-new life and have everything to live for, including a future in heaven—and the future starts now! God is keeping careful watch over us and the future. The Day is coming when you’ll have it all—life healed and whole” (1 Peter 1:3-5, The Message).

     Long after the plastic eggs are cracked and put away for another year and the dyed and decorated eggs have passed their time and purpose … the Lord behind the celebration, longs for connection in a loving eternal relationship with us. Many Christian Believers celebrate the day of Christ’s Resurrection while somehow failing to realize Christ did not rise to become a symbol on a day to commemorate new life. The Risen Christ desires to bring new life to us by being the truth, the way and the life to us. He left His Spirit especially for that purpose … to teach, convict, direct and guide us as He empowers us into a new life.

Since our sins were nailed to the cross by Christ’s willingness to suffer and die for the sin of the world and every sin in each of us, He also took every one of those sins to the grave where they were permanently laid and left in the carved stone tomb. Our new life comes as the Risen Christ meets each one of us, knowing every facet and nuance of the weaknesses in our human heart and every foible in our personality. He comes to us to encourage and help us live the new life He brings through His endless and eternal grace.

He is the way, the truth and the life but many times we hold unto our way, our truth and our life; which is actually living in our old ways, believing our illusions of the truth and walking in the selfishness of our life. This is how the Risen Christ can be set aside or discarded like the colored eggs and decorations of the Easter season. The Risen Christ does not desire to be a decoration in our life but to be our life as we live out the days of our lives. The purpose of the Resurrection is not a story or a theme about a new life but to impart a new life to us. The victory found through the Resurrection is not in the knowing about a new life but in desiring the new life that our Lord and God can bring when the Risen Christ is allowed to be alive in us. His ways are the ways we follow, His truth is the truth we believe and His life is the life we desire.

The celebration of Easter is not about a day nor can it be contained in a day. The celebration of Easter radiates through the Risen Christ living in us. A Risen Christ who guides, leads and encourages as He meets and walks with us in every moment of our days until He greets us as we come into His presence forever in eternity. There is no condemnation in His love for us, nor is there anything on this earth or in the heavens that can separate us from His love (Romans 8). His Spirit may bring conviction but the conviction is simply to turn us in repentance from the futile life of sin and selfishness towards the new life He desires that we live.

It is sad to limit the blessing of a new life the Resurrection brings to us, to a celebration on a single day. A single day ends like the grass, naturally fading away as it comes to an end. The new life our Lord and Savior desires us to be part of, is an endless string of new days in the abiding presence of the Risen Christ. Celebrate each and every day in the life you have with the Risen Christ walking along side you, as your Lord and Savior. It is the only journey that will matter in this life and in eternity.

“Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God. It cost God plenty to get you out of that dead-end, empty-headed life you grew up in. He paid with Christ’s sacred blood, you know. He died like an unblemished, sacrificial lamb. And this was no afterthought. Even though it has only lately—at the end of the ages—become public knowledge, God always knew he was going to do this for you. It’s because of this sacrificed Messiah, whom God then raised from the dead and glorified, that you trust God, that you know you have a future in God.”
(1 Peter 1:18-21, The Message)


Suggested Reading … 1 Peter 1, From The Message


Read the Online Message Version @  http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+Peter+1&version=MSG

Steady our gaze on You, O Lord.


“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28, NIV)

   We must steady my gaze upon our Lord. Faith doesn’t automatically just rise up on the situations and occasions we face as we live out our days.   Our faith must always and continually be fixed on God.  We must gaze upon Him and care, guidance and power, He brings to our days.  Abraham’s gaze was fixed upon God and His provision enabling Abraham to walk in faith. Joshua’s gaze was fixed upon the mighty strength of Almighty God because he had faith in the God he knew and trusted.  This faith empowered him to lead a vast nation into the Promised Land.  David’s gaze was upon the hand of God and he did not see the giant before him but only the victory through the power of his God.  Peter could walk on the water as long as his gaze was upon his Lord and he took each step in faith. Our gaze must be fixed on God as well.  With our gaze fixed, our faith remains fixed in the struggle, in the bleakness, in the danger and fear, in the waiting, in the daunting, in the impossible and in the sustaining through everything we encounter and face.

       In bleakness, we look for God’s provision and sufficiency.  In struggle, we look for God’s support.  In fear and danger, we look for God’s strength and rescue.  In the daunting, we look for God’s mighty hand. In the impossible, we look for the possibilities of God’s presence. In the waiting, we look for God’s wisdom.  In the unknowing, we look for God’s knowledge. In the bitter, we look for God’s grace.  In the broken, we look to God’s remaking.  In the shattering, we look for God’s mending. In the busy, we look for God’s calming. In the noisy, we look for God’s quieting. We fix our gaze on God because we know His love is steadfastly fixed on us and His love endures forever. We must even steady our gaze in the abundance, because if we see only abundance than all you have is abundance. Our abundance is a gift from God and we must remember to fix our gaze on Him in thankfulness.

       If you glance at God while gazing at what is around you, you will over whelmed and consumed with what is around you. You have only yourself for strength. If you glance at what is around you, while fixing your gaze upon God, what is around you will not overwhelm you, as God is with you. God becomes your strength.  If you see only fear, disappointment and discouragement than all you have is fear, disappointment and discouragement. If your gaze is fixed upon God in the midst of fear, disappointment and discouragement you will see and find God and all that He is.

      Our gaze must be upon our Lord.  We should not look to the right or the left, but follow trusting and obeying in all things and in all ways.  By trusting and obeying, we will come by faith into the land of promises fulfilled.  Our true strength is in God alone because His provision will always be more than we need or imagine.  His grace is always sufficient because His love is so extravagantly wrapped around all of our days.

      Oh Lord, steady our gaze in the bleakness, steady our gaze in danger and fear, steady our gaze in disappointment, steady our gaze in heartache and doubt, steady our gaze in everything we face including abundance, that we may see only Your love, care, guidance, will and provision.

 “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians 3:20-12, NIV)