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Tuesday, March 22, 2005

DAILY ENCOURAGEMENT - TUESDAY: God’s Desire For His People Today

"The more wild and incredible your desire, the more willing and prompt God is in fulfilling it, if you will have it so.'' -- Coventry Patmore
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For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; -- Col 1:9 (KJV)

Paul’s letter to the Colossians was to instruct them in the ways of God. He desired for them that would be filled with the knowledge of His will, to walk worthy, being fruitful and increasing in the knowledge of God, and what Paul desired, is also what God desires for his people today…

To Live a Life Worthy of the Lord.
That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; -- Col 1:10. Walking worthy means that Christians today must live a holy life, which pleases God. Please Him, bring Him great pleasure as He watches you walking worthy of the life that He desires for you today. We can do this by…

Bearing Fruit in everything we do, which is essential to living a holy life. It is important that everything we get involved in for God produces positive results for the Kingdom of God. One of the ways which pleases God is to communicate the Gospel and lead people to Christ All over the world this gospel is bearing fruit and growing, just as it has been doing among you since the day you heard it and understood God's grace in all its truth. -- Col 1:6 (NIV)

One Sunday evening, William Booth was walking in London with his son, Bramwell, who was then 12 or 13 years old. The father surprised the son by taking him into a saloon! The place was crowded with men and women, many of them bearing on their faces the marks of vice and crime; some were drunk. The fumes of alcohol and tobacco were poisonous. "Willie," Booth said to his son, "These are our people; these are the people I want you to live for and bring to Christ." Years later, Bramwell Booth wrote, "The impression never left me." W. Wiersbe, The Wycliffe Handbook of Preaching & Preachers, p. 185.

Growing in the knowledge of God is another essential to living a holy life... Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. -- 2 Pet 1:2.

Most Christians I know can tell you some things about Christ but there are others who feel they need to know everything else in the Bible i.e. Where did Adam’s wife come from? How many animals in total in the Noah’s Ark? Where is the lost tribe? End times, prophecy etc; whilst others search for scriptures that tell them what they want to hear.

But as followers of Christ we need to know Christ! Paul said… I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.-- Phil 3:10-11.

As followers of Christ we need to obey the command of the Master… Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. -- Luke 9:23. A good definition of a Christian would be… ‘One who follows and obeys the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ’

At the close of life, the question will not be,
"How much have you gotten?"
but "How much have you given?"
Not "How much have you won?"
but "How much have you done?"
Not "How much have you saved?"
but "How much have you sacrificed?"
It will be "How much have you loved and served,"
not "How much were you honoured?"
-- Nathan C. Schaeffer.

Loving father, my desires are your desires. Help me by the power of the Holy Spirit to live a life that is pleasing to you. Help me to bear fruit and to grow in the knowledge of Christ. Help me Lord, to take up my cross daily and to be a follower of Christ! In the precious name of Jesus I ask this! Amen!

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