Monthly Archives: March 2015

Are You Sure You Are Saved?

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At church last Sunday the verses were these below, the Reformation ESV study Bible had a note, so I looked it up:

2 Corinthians 13 English Standard Version (ESV)

Final Warnings
13 This is the third time I am coming to you. Every charge must be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 2 I warned those who sinned before and all the others, and I warn them now while absent, as I did when present on my second visit, that if I come again I will not spare them— 3 since you seek proof that Christ is speaking in me. He is not weak in dealing with you, but is powerful among you. 4 For he was crucified in weakness, but lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but in dealing with you we will live with him by the power of God.

5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! 6 I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test. 7 But we pray to God that you may not do wrong—not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. 8 For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. 9 For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. Your restoration is what we pray for. 10 For this reason I write these things while I am away from you, that when I come I may not have to be severe in my use of the authority that the Lord has given me for building up and not for tearing down.

~~

TEXT NOTES: 13:5 Examine . . . Test. See 1 Cor. 11:28; Gal. 6:4.

Paul’s words help clarify the doctrine of assurance of faith. Paul asks the Corinthians to examine their own lives for evidence of salvation.

Such evidence would include trust in Christ (Heb. 3:6),

Now Moses was faithful in all God’s house as a servant, to testify to the things that were to be spoken later,but Christ is faithful over God’s house as a son. And we are his house if indeed we hold fast our confidence and our boasting in our hope.

obedience to God (Matt. 7:21),

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

growth in holiness (Heb. 12:14; 1 John 3:3),

14 Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.

Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again[b] he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22, 23),

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

love for other Christians (1 John 3:14),

14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death.

Positive influence on others (Matt. 5:16),

14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that[b] they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

adhering to the apostolic teaching (1 John 4:2),

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.

and the testimony of the Holy Spirit within them (Rom. 8:15, 16).

12 So then, brothers,[e] we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons[f] of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.

 

Do you have all that? Do I have all that? Trust, obedience, growth, fruit, love? Sometimes I think, yes…sometimes, no.

If we don’t think/feel/see these assurances, then how do we know we are saved?

 

Mentoring….. What is it? J.M.O.*

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I asked my peeps on Facebook what mentoring looked like to them. Here are some answers:

~Encouraging and directing

~Time. You are that person’s source of learning.

~Guess it would depend on the setting/ expectations on both sides going into it, but a biggie would be that you genuinely care, can actively listen, and are @ least one step ahead of the person you are mentoring..doesn’t mean you have life all figured out.

~Walking alongside of them as they travel in life, encourage and support, but not feeling like you are responsible to solve all their problems. Show them what a healthy life looks like following God and allow God to work in them as only He can do.

~Not just hearing their heart but truly listening to it and guiding them towards its calling and passion!

~Depends on what it is.

All these are true. Yet does not even begin to encompass all that there is to mentoring.

When I was first asked to be a mentor, and subsequently, when I asked others to be mentors, there was a resounding feeling that we were not ‘good enough’ to mentor another.

The thought of putting yourself out there and caring for another person is scary, unknown, overwhelming. We feel we put so much time into other things, like work, home, family….but do we? Do we really put our time into a worthy cause or are we just making sure we have time to watch our favorite shows/games/internet?

Being a mentor brings up emotions, good and bad. Am I ‘good enough’, do I have enough time, do I have enough energy, do I have enough knowledge? Will I get a ‘good’ student? Will we have things in common? What is it in for me?

Yes, on all accounts. God will give you all these things and more. You will be blessed.

My heart is a bit too soft and I care a bit too much and get hurt a bit too much by others. I really didn’t want all the baggage that came with mentoring another broken soul.

But I am that broken soul. I may not have done the exact things/sins/roadblocks that my student has, but I have done enough to be able to turn ‘my mess into a message’ of hope for someone else.

Mentors are not present to fix another person. We are there to walk alongside another, get into their lives, speak truth in love, network, to listen.

If you are feeling inspired, be a mentor, give and receive the Love of Christ. You won’t be sorry.

http://www.loveincpiercecounty.org/jobs-for-life/

*J.M.O. = Just My Opinion

Jobs for Life 1779067_10152735971169217_6572052166291814054_n 1781908_234070230097735_2111548027_n

Great Is Your Steadfast Love

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A Prayer of David.

86 Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me,
    for I am poor and needy.
Preserve my life, for I am godly;
    save your servant, who trusts in you—you are my God.
Be gracious to me, O Lord,
    for to you do I cry all the day.
Gladden the soul of your servant,
    for to you, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.
For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving,
    abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.
Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer;
    listen to my plea for grace.
In the day of my trouble I call upon you,
    for you answer me.

There is none like you among the gods, O Lord,
    nor are there any works like yours.
All the nations you have made shall come
    and worship before you, O Lord,
    and shall glorify your name.
10 For you are great and do wondrous things;
    you alone are God.
11 Teach me your way, O Lord,
    that I may walk in your truth;
    unite my heart to fear your name.
12 I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart,
    and I will glorify your name forever.
13 For great is your steadfast love toward me;
    you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.

14 O God, insolent men have risen up against me;
    a band of ruthless men seeks my life,
    and they do not set you before them.
15 But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
16 Turn to me and be gracious to me;
    give your strength to your servant,
    and save the son of your maidservant.
17 Show me a sign of your favor,
    that those who hate me may see and be put to shame
    because you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.

…but a breath in his nostrils

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Stop trusting in man, who has but a breath in his nostrils. Of what account is he? — Isaiah 2:22

Thought

How many times have you been disappointed by someone for whom you voted, betrayed by a friend, been abandoned by a loved one, or let down by a church leader? While we love others and care about them, every other person in our world is just like us — a flawed human being who breathes the same air and walks the same ground as we do. Only One is worthy of our ultimate trust. He showed us by sacrificing what was most precious to him so we could know his love. Let’s not put our hope in other mere mortals; only God can safeguard our trust. Let’s put our hope in him!

Prayer

Father, you know the broken places in my heart that were caused by the failure of people in my life. I confess that I have sometimes become disillusioned with your way because of the failures and inconsistencies in your people. Deep down I know, dear Father, that their failures do not mean your failure, but it is hard for it not to feel that way. Call me close to you. Give me a more gracious heart toward those who fail me. Establish my faith, strong and firm in you, O LORD. In you I put my trust. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

The Thoughts and Prayers for Today’s Verse are written by Phil Ware. You can email questions or comments to phil@heartlight.org.

Today’s Verse Illustrated

Inspirational illustration of Isaiah 2:22