Thursday, July 19, 2012

Can We Really Blame It On The Times?

"All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work."
2 Timothy 3:16-17

I believe we are in the last days. I believe Christ will be returning soon. I look for Him daily. Are you ready, my friend?

We seem to look at these last days and blame everything on the times. Can we really? Do we not have some responsibility in what is going on today? Sure, we like to complain. We like to add in our two sense, but what do we really do about it? I think we spend more time talking about it than we do in prayer. That is our first mistake. When things do not line up with God's Word shouldn't we be in prayer over these very issues asking for His guidance and wisdom? I think we all expect someone else to do the work while we sit back and complain.

I found myself in 2 Timothy yesterday and I simply got lost in God's Word. In chapter three it takes an in depth look at the times and our attitudes about it. Take a look.

"But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; Avoid such men as these."
2 Timothy 3:1-5

Wow! That is some powerful stuff isn't it? Sound like the world around us? How about the walls we live in? Lets be honest. Did you find traits of yourself in the midst of these character traits? As I looked over these verses I was horrified as I had to admit I see myself here. Oh sure, we don't want to. It's much easier to ignore our faults and point out the faults of others, but lets get real. We have issues of the heart we need to face. Sure, we can look at the world and see the evils, but it doesn't mean we must be part of it. We are to set ourselves apart. Too often I find myself right in the midst of this. How about you?

But see we have the beautiful grace of God. He doesn't leave us hanging by just pointing out what it will be like in the end times. I mean, do we really just have to accept this and live in it? I don't think so. God gives us more. We have a choice in our daily attitude. We have the option for change. Now, we may not be able to change others, but we can change our self. That is one attitude we do have control over. This world may be falling, but friends, we can reach one person at a time, just by reaching out and showing the love of Christ. He must be evident in our lives. So, the question is. Is there evidence He lives in you? Ouch! I'm not sure when people see my life they always see Him first. We should have the attitude that it doesn't matter if one knows our name or not, but what matters is that they know Christ through us. We have the Holy Spirit to convict us. I believe He is calling me to change.

He gives us what we need for change. He equips us with exactly what we need to overcome and be the children of God He is calling us to be. We are to hold ourselves at a higher standard. We are to have self control and know when to stand and when to walk away.

Prayer is mighty powerful. We simply don't spend enough time in prayer. Sure, we send our needs and wants and we expect God to move in way. But what about God's Word for us? Our we really willing to wait and listen? When we hear His call for our lives are we willing to be those vessels needed? Too many times I am ready to say I will move, but then the call comes and I find myself saying no. Can you imagine? Saying no to the King of kings, Lord of lords? For Him to call us, is for Him to love us. We should be excited for that call. We should be in wait of the call and ready to move for the God who gave all for us.

"Now you followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, perseverance, persecutions, and sufferings, such as happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium and at Lystra; what persecutions I endured, and out of them all the Lord rescued me! Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus."
2 Timothy 3:10-16

By diving into God's Word we have nothing to fear. We have example after example of His people overcoming evil. He always gives us a way out and what is meant for evil He is able to turn to good.

I don't think heaven is far off for those who love the Lord. I think the time is near. We need to get busy in God's work. Before we begin sharing with others we first need to make sure our heart is right with the Lord. We need to leave the evils of this world behind and grab onto His goodness. We need to think pure thoughts and focus on the things that really matter. If it doesn't have eternal value, it doesn't really matter much. What does matter? The soul of man. To do so, the Word of God must be part of our lives. It must factor in every decision we make. It must be the Light that leads us. Christ is everything.

"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you."
Philippians 4:4-9


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