Thursday, March 31, 2016

Does Your Life Need Motivation?

As long as we still have breath in our lungs, we need to still be learning. That is why it is important to read and study the Bible. It is precisely why after having read through it from cover to cover now twice, I can't give up reading it. I am working on my third time, this time with my husband along for the ride. Why? Why not simply give up now that I have already read it? It's because there is always something to learn. Each day offers new insights into what I am dealing with and God's voice is the only one I want to hear giving me advice. Today is not the same place where I was a year or even two from today.

This is why attending a firm Bible teaching church is so critical as we begin to enter into these final days on earth. Christians don't worry about what happens when we die. We already know what is going to happen and we live in joyful expectation of that so we simply move on to better things. We know heaven awaits when this life ends or when we hear the sound of the trumpet and we are caught up in the air to meet the Lord in the rapture of His church. We have that confidence! We don't doubt it will happen.

Jesus reminds us hear in Revelation 16:15 to be watching and in doing so we will be blessed.

Revelation 16:15a ~ "Behold, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake."

We need to understand that this is not a contradiction in the Bible due to the word "like" and not "the" when Jesus makes the statement that He is coming like a thief. Not that He is one. He will be like one to those who are not watching.

If you are watching, can a thief break into your home? No, because you are watching. As believers in Christ, we have nothing to fear because we are walking in the light of being a believer of Christ. We can't be caught off guard or surprised by anything that happens. It is merely a confirmation that the things we read about in the Bible are true. However, those who are not believers in Christ, who are not walking in the light, can be easily surprised when a thief comes. Why? Because they weren't watching. They simply didn't believe it would happen as predicted.

Now don't get me wrong, the Bible is clear that no believers or non believers will know the day or the hour of Christ's return, but the Bible did say we would know the time or the seasons. Just like now, it's the beginning of Spring, but how do you know? Because new growth is beginning in our trees, our plants, the birds are back from hibernation, everything is turning green again. We don't need anyone to tell us, we can see the signs.

That is just what the Bible is saying about being vigilant  and in watching for the return of Jesus. It can happen at anytime, but there are indicators or signs that it is getting closer. Just like looking in the mirror, you don't need to see it to know you are growing a year older. Every single day, we are one day closer than yesterday to Christ's return. We are watching and looking for the signs. A time to be watching because its what God's people do. We watch in joyful expectation.

The Bible warns us that in the last days there will be those who will lead us astray, whether political leaders or spiritual ones. Jesus warned us.

Matthew 16:12 ~ "They understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and the Sadducees."

The apostle Paul issued a warning.

1 Timothy 4:1-2 ~ "Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and the teachings of demons, through the insincerity of liars who consciences are seared,"

The Bible even warns us.

Matthew 7:15 ~ "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves."

The world out there is seen as those who are not urgent about Christ's return. They are preoccupied, burdened, distracted, and self righteous. The Christian on the other hand is seen as one who is very excited about Christ's return and so by nature is watching and waiting. That is why the Bible says "blessed are they that watch."

Are you toying with God? Do you play with sin thinking you still have plenty of time to change your ways? If you really believe in Christ's imminent return that could happen at any time, it would make you reconsider what you choose to do today.

If missionaries need help, spend the money to help them get the word out. Don't allow them to live in less than ideal situations while churches pile the money in their bank accounts. We need to ensure they have everything they need. Money is simply tools. We need to change the way we look at it.

We need to watch with joyful expectations and stay busy doing all we can for the glory of God in the time we have left. It might be til the end of today or it might be ten years from now. The entire book of 1 Thessalonians is all about the church waiting for the imminent return of Christ.

The world will mock us for doing just that. Waiting and watching for God. I am sure you have already received your own dose of ridicule when you speak of Christ's return for His church. People mock and ask, "Well where is He then?" They will argue that what we read in the Bible is not what it really means. Don't let them cast doubt on what the Bible is clear about. All the apostles said to stay alert and be watching. It will be a warning sign in the last days that people will simply give up hope and that is just what Satan wants them to do.

We already see signs that even churches are giving up hope and growing apathetic in light of what is happening in the world. People are simply throwing in the towel because it seems easier to go with the flow that stand firm in what you believe especially when we watch our leaders do what is right in their own eyes. Who would have ever thought we would ever see the day when our own political leaders would put their own needs above that of the country and offices they lead. Is there any wonder that being a Christian is becoming increasingly more hostile and difficult as we enter into the last days?

Keep your joy.

Keep your hope!

For the believer when we die, we enter into heaven. If we hear a trumpet blast today, we will enter heaven. For us, it's a win/win situation. It we are watching, we will not be caught off guard.

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