Wednesday, October 21, 2009

ALL or nothing

Why do we keep going downtown week after week, month after month?

When the Holy Spirit compells us to serve HIM, we obey!
Now, if I could just do this ALL the time! I guess that means I need to continue "practicing" my faith daily until it's perfect, and it won't be perfect until I am with Jesus in heaven.

What is our number one call in this life according to Jesus?

"To love God with ALL our heart, with ALL our soul, with ALL our mind


to love our neighbor as ourself." Matthew 22:37

Easy, straightforward command, right? So, then why do we make it so hard??

The ALL and the AND in Jesus' words are MONUMENTAL. I am continually awed by the power of God's Holy Spirit in scripture! One small word by His Holy Spirit can change, has changed and continues to change my life, as I'm sure it does yours.

The other day my children and I were talking about praying as they read the Bible - that the words are living and how important it is to ask the Holy Spirit what He wants them to hear from His word. We can read an entire chapter in the Gospel or other book from which God will show us just a phrase. In reply, my son yelled out, "or just one word!" Praise God for His Spirit through our children!

Later that day I was meditating on the above scripture and God did speak just one word to me-
One powerful word - ALL.

3 little letters with such a HUGE message I am compelled to share.

He doesn't want just part of us, or to just give us a partial blessing. He wants to bless us in ALL our ways. He then poured out to me numerous other scriptures where He tells us this very message.

"I will bless the Lord at ALL times, His praise shall ever be in my mouth." Psalm 34:1

"I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me." Phil. 4:13

"More than that, I count ALL things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of ALL things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ..."Phil 3:8

"Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart... in ALL your ways acknowledge Him." Proverbs 3:5-

"ALL things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose" Romans 8:28

Do we want His ALL? Do we want to live His command in order to receive it?
Obviously, we can't do anything to earn His love. He loves us the same today, tomorrow and always, BUT we are commanded to act out our faith in love.

As Christ said to his disciples, "Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you." Luke 6:38

The world tells us we can have it all, but the world isn't talking about the same all as God's ALL. God's ALL will bless us more and cost us much more.

How much? ALL our heart, ALL our soul and ALL our mind - for God AND our neighbor.

This includes our enemies, those who curse us, those who think differently, act differently, dress differently, smell differently, vote differently, and worship differently.

It's impossible for us but truly possible for God through us if we call upon His Holy Spirit to guide the way.

Are we ready? Call on the Holy Spirit who is ALLways there to enlighten us.

Oh, Heavenly Father, I thank you for the Gift of Jesus. I thank you for the Gift of Your Holy Spirit. Oh, Holy Spirit, I give you permission this very moment to operate in my life. I give you permission to move me and change me according to Your Will. I surrender my will to Your Will. Your Will be done!
I ask you, Holy Spirit, to empower me to do Your Will. Holy Spirit, You are the Lord and Giver of Life. You are my Enabler! My Guardian! My Advocate! My Teacher! My Counselor! And my Sanctifier!
I ask that you inspire me through all of your precious gifts: The Gift of Wisdom, the Gift of Understanding, the Gift of Counsel, the Gift of Fortitude, the Gift of Knowledge, the Gift of Piety and the Gift of the Fear of the Lord.
I ask that you would reveal Your truth to me, that You would annoint me to proclaim Jesus through my words and by my actions, that You would direct me, teach me, enlighten me, reside in me, fellowship with me and renew me as well as convict me of my sin.
I ask this that I might bear fruit of Your Presence in my life: the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faith, gentleness, and self-control.
I thank you Father for Gift of Gifts...Your Holy Spirit.
I give you all the praise, all the honor, all the glory for this most precious gift.
I ask all of this and thank you for it in the most wonderful name of Your Son, Jesus!