Friday, January 28, 2011

Precious Promises

2 Peter 1:3-11

His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love.  For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.  But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins.
Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure.  For if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

First, remember that salvation is God's work.  It is not our work.  I can't remember not having faith in my life.  Faith is believing in something good I can't see in front of me at that moment I believe.  I can remember from times long ago, I have always wanted to be good and to do good.  Mine is a continual hunger for knowledge of the Lord.  I have a highlighter especially made for highlighting words in the Bible.  I highlight passages when they jump off the page at me and cause the beat of my heart to quicken.  I know I will need those passages again.  Yes, the verses I've shared with you today are highlighted.  They were already highlighted when I opened my Bible a few minutes ago.  It's a mystery how long ago I highlighted them. 
We can only exercise self-control in a situation that would influence us otherwise.  We  persevere when we are going through a difficult time and feel like giving in or giving up.  We can change our feelings if we don't like the way we feel about something or someone.  We will get through; we must get through; we persevere; we believe this difficult time is temporary and we will overcome what ever is holding us back.  It is a daily endeavor to be more godly; something we have to put into practice each and every day.  Spending quality time in solitude with the nose in the Bible, learning and applying God's plan and the very nature of God trains us to be more godly in our words and our actions.  You are my sisters and brothers, one and all.  Every kindness I extend is because of the love of God in my heart and because of my love for you.  Love.  It is more than romantic.  It is more than sensual emotions.  It is more than a pretty card and gift on Valentine's Day.  Love is an action word.  We have 365 days to express our love and countless ways to show it.   I believe "Lord" and "love" appear in the Bible more than any other words printed therein. God is love and love is of God.  I want to be an effective and productive disciple of God.  It's easier than one might think.  Keep the desire alive and burning in your heart. Take care and keep smiling.  Love, Nan

A bell is no bell 'til you ring it
a song is no song 'til you sing it
and love in your heart
wasn't put there to stay
love isn't love 'til you give it away
(lyrics from Oscar Hammerstein)

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