As Christ becomes more real to us, and as we learn to be obedient to the urging of His Spirit abiding in us, we realize more and more, the weaknesses we have and our inability to control them. Until we can say “I can’t but Jesus can”, we will always have these temptations of the flesh. We have to allow Jesus to control our urges and desires. The more we allow Him to do so, that much more of our sinful nature is stripped away and we put on more of His nature. It doesn’t matter what your ethnicity or your past is. The only thing that matters is Christ in us. Since we are God’s holy people, we must clothe ourselves with His characteristics. Love, mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience is what Jesus looks like. What about us, what do people see when they look at us?
11 Dear friend, don’t let this bad example influence you. Follow only what is good. Remember that those who do good prove that they are God’s children, and those who do evil prove that they do not know God – 3 John 11 NLT
The devil hates anything good. When he sees us showing love and compassion for others, his anger knows no bounds. That is why it is so important for us to show our love for others. We not only please God, but, at the same time, we frustrate satan. Showing our love by doing good is how we imitate Jesus.
38 And you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.—Acts 10:38 (NLT)
We are now the voice, the hands and the feet of the gospel. It is up to us to continue the work that Jesus started. He doesn’t need people with ability, He needs people that are available for Him to use. He could do it all without us, but He has chosen to use the foolish things of this world to confound the wise, so He uses those that make themselves available to Him. Show love and do good so that others can speak highly about you and you will lay up your rewards in heaven.
“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous
10 Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. 11 You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generouson every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. 12 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. 13 Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. — 2 Cor. 9:10-13 NIV
Starting today, we need to prove to God that we are truly thankful for all the blessings He pours into our lives. We can do that by sharing those blessings, whether they be talent or time, words or worth, things or thoughts.
Someone you see today and every day needs a kind word, Take a second to smile and greet them. Someone you see today and every day needs someone to just listen to their story. Stop and listen, really listen. Someone you see today will be hungry and/or homeless. Feed them, naturally and spiritually. Someone you see today is feeling worthless and unloved, take the time to assure them of their worth and value in God’s scheme of things. If we make it a habit to do these kinds of things daily, we will not only be proving to God that we are truly thankful, but the world will know that we have been with Jesus. When we share our blessings, at the end of the day, each of us will find that we are the one who was truly blessed and received the greatest blessing.
40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ — Matt. 25:40 NIV
6 Your boasting is not good. Don’t you know that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough? 7 Get rid of the old yeast, so that you may be a new unleavened batch—as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. 8 Therefore let us keep the Festival, not with the old bread leavened with malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.—1 Cor. 5:6-8 NIV
Paul continues to emphasize the necessity of having a humble mindset. We must live our lives with humility and the attitude of a servant. Jesus is our example of serving others in our daily lifestyle. The leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees is their teaching of the necessity to keep the Law. In the Old Testament law, the Jewish people could eat no leavened bread during the Feast of the Passover. They were even required to get all the leaven out of their houses so nothing could be tainted with the leaven. They had to celebrate the Passover each year. This required them to kill a sacrificial lamb each time. But Jesus is our sacrificial Lamb and he was sacrificed once for all sin of all times. He does not need to return to the cross each year. Jesus is the bread of Life and because of this, we are not required to follow the old ways. In fact to do so is to add to the plan of salvation things that God does not require of us The leaven that we need to avoid in our life is pride and the desires of the flesh. We replace those things with the fruit of the Holy Spirit who now lives in us. We are”new creations” in Christ Jesus and He has fulfilled the law for us. 17 “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.–Matt.5:17 NIV