Saturday, January 4, 2014

 Wishing you
a very BLESSED Happy New Year !! 
Once again we have hung a new calendar on the wall as we greet another new year !  
Perhaps facing the unknowns of a new year, makes us want to have some control,  so we make resolutions that will presumably  improve us in some way  as we wander through the days, weeks and months to the end of 2014.
But what if we make a serious resolution -  that from this day forward  our eyes will be on Jesus.  That we resolve to be more like Him in all we say, in all we do , and in all that we are and become  -- the true 'make-over' that Paul speaks about in II Cor. 3:18 ...   which says ... 
"But we all with open face 
beholding as in a glass, the glory of the Lord, 
are changed into the same image from glory to glory, 
even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

It is natural to  desire to be like someone we admire and to  try to emulate them and follow their example. 
We are made in God's image,  called to be 'like Him' .

We so naturally link obedience and disobedience to the demands of laws/commandments or an endless list of do's and don'ts,  something we learn early as a child in our parents care.
How often we struggle in our walk of obedience ...   we make judgement calls as to right and wrong ... consider whether  we will  take the high road or 'this time'  stoop to compromise,  we justify what we want to do .. we struggle to silence our consciences ,  we meet the minimum standard we have set for ourselves or we aim high and feel the guilt when we fail.

What if we changed the question.

What   if instead of speaking of God's law/s commandments in terms of obedience we changed the question.  What if throughout our day the question we kept before our eyes was ...  
"Do I want to be 'like God' ? or do I want to be NOT like God ?"  
God is love,  and Jesus taught  how all of God's commandments boil down to two commandments - to love God, to love our fellow man.   The more we desire to be  like God, the more we choose to  love, the more we choose to love, the more we are changed to be 'like God'. 
The closer a relationship is the less need there is for a 'list' of requirements --  more and more 'love' itself dictates all that is good and guards against harming the relationship.

It is interesting to note that in the 400 years of silence between the Old and the New Testament,  when there was no relationship between God and man, there was a continual focus on adding  to the 'list' demanding obedience until, by  the time Jesus came the list was ridiculous.
Focusing on obeying a list of commandments leaves us cold in relationship... and a cold relationship demands a 'list' .... but wanting to be 'like God' motivates our obedience by LOVE  in those things that will change us 'from image to image' until we truly look like Him in all our ways !

I want to be one like the disciple of Jesus,  about whom it is said ... "And a certain servant girl, seeing him as he sat by the fire, looked intently at him and said, "This man was also with Him."  (Luke 22:56)

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