If you haven’t read part 1 – The Truth About Us, you might want to go back and read that before you read this! It will make much more sense . . . hopefully. I can’t wait to share with you what God showed me. It really is simple. But as I said, simple is not always easy.

I Wonder…

Maybe I overthink some things, but I really do want to know HOW to live during the days we have been given. I believe we need to give thought to our ways and not just walk along without purpose and direction. I want to enjoy His grace, mercy, and the wonderful gifts He brings into my life everyday. However, the internal struggle rages war in my soul . . . an awareness that everything is not as it seems. The time is growing short and the days matter so much more than I can even imagine. All may look fine, but we are at war with the enemy of our souls.

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9 You women  who are so complacent,
    rise up and listen to me;
you daughters who feel secure,
    hear what I have to say!
10 In little more than a year
    you who feel secure will tremble;
the grape harvest will fail,
    and the harvest of fruit will not come.
11 Tremble, you complacent women (this applies to men, as well);
    shudder, you daughters who feel secure!…. Isaiah 32:9-11 NIV

I’ve read these verses for years, only this week did it really speak to my heart that even now an enemy is approaching and many are unaware. We often see only what this world has to offer and we are oblivious to our sinful condition. This might even be disguised as living a good life with a good family, comfortable and feeling secure. That’s all good, but is Jesus really our Lord? What is God speaking to our hearts about today?

It could be that we are religious people, doing the right things, serving others. We might even know the scriptures really well. Yet, our hearts are far from God. This is a warning for us to wake up out of our complacency. Lord, open my eyes!

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How We Overcome

Are you distracted by hard circumstances that tend to consume you? Has life felt so hard that you can’t help but wonder if there will ever be any relief? Are you tired and weary? I sure have been. Yet, know this . . . the enemy will use all kinds of things, good and bad, to distract us from what matters and cause us to doubt. He wants us to be ineffective . . . lukewarm . . . indifferent.

Or maybe we are comfortable, secure, unchallenged, unaware, too busy, unconcerned, and satisfied. That ’s just as concerning.

We are more than conquerors in Christ. He gave His life to pay the price for our sins and set us right with God, by faith in Jesus Christ, as our redeemer.

We have been made righteous by Jesus’ sacrifice. This is a gift we receive by faith, not by what we do. We cannot earn it. We must believe in faith that Jesus’ sacrifice accomplished what we could not do on our own.

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What Do I Need To Do?

Will I choose to engage in the unseen battle? Will I stand and boldly pray – not giving up? Will I learn to apply God’s word to my life, which means I actually do what He says?

I must wrestle with my flesh . . . overcome the lies I believe about myself . . . lay down my self-reliance, control issues, unforgiveness, fear, insecurity, critical spirit, and pride. I tell you, the war with SELF is constant! EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. I have a choice to make about how I am going to live and think.

Still, I prayed and sought the Lord really desiring to know HOW to live for Jesus right here in the middle of 2021. I cannot do the things the world does. I cannot follow religious tradition that was not ordained by God. I cannot just go through the motions and miss God.

He led me to Romans 12 for the answers I was looking for! I love how He speaks so intimately and directly to us. When we seek Him, we WILL find Him.

Just come to Him. None of us are good enough, so don’t let that keep you from coming. That is not what our relationship with Christ is about. He is the one who makes us right with God. He promises to give us what we need as we depend on Him.

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Straight Out Of The Word

This is what God showed me. This is HOW we are to live for the Glory of God, this day, this time, straight out of Romans 12 (this is only the application part for each verse):

Verse 1: Daily lay down my life. That means dying to my desires and following Him. It means all my energy and resources are His. Trust His guidance.

Verses 1 & 2: Be transformed by renewing my mind in His word- by His Spirit.

Verse 2: Don’t live like the world, by it’s customs that are selfish and corrupting. This must be firmly planted in my mind . . . transformed by the renewing of my mind. Don’t be proud, covetous, selfish, stubborn, arrogant. It’s only by the power of the Holy Spirit that my mind is renewed and transformed.

Verse 3: Know who I am in Christ. Identity and worth in Him- not measured by worldly success or opinions of people.

Verses 4 & 5: Believers should live and work together.

Verse 6: Use what God gives me for His glory. Be faithful and seek ways to serve others with what Christ has given me. Jesus above all else.

Verse 7: Value each person’s gifts. Everyone is needed.

Verses 9 & 10: Be real and sincere in love. This requires concentration and effort. Help other people become better people. Give time, money and personal involvement to other people. Love my community.

Verse 10: Don’t be competitive. Out do one another in love.

Verse 12: Be hospitable. I cannot let being tired, busy or having a messy house keep me from meeting needs by opening our home. Hospitality focuses on the need of the guest.

Verses 17-20: Forgive people who hurt us. Forgive because Jesus forgave me. Respond kindly to those who hurt me. Try to befriend those who have hurt me deeply. Forgiveness involves both attitude and action.

Walking It Out Starts in Our Head and Heart

It is simple. Yet, We know that simple is not always easy. Obedience is costly.

My heart longs to obey, yet so often I fall short. I mess up. I take my eyes off of Jesus. I look to my circumstances, my lack, my pain, my disappointment, my inadequacy. I let my feelings lead me and that’s never good, because feelings are not truth.

What I must do is forget myself and look to God.

It’s then my perspective about life, pain, disappointment, loss, joy, provision, and circumstances changes. When I gaze upward and continue to preach the gospel to myself I see the glory of the Lord.

Those rotten feelings that tend to confuse me are overcome with the presence of God as I bring them to Him and surrender.

His presence changes me. I can do what He says. I can live like He’s commanded me to.

It may not be easy, but it is possible.

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And when I fall (and I will), He picks me up as I turn to Him. He comforts and restores me so that I can keep going. We are all a work in progress. Just do the next thing.

Trust and obey . . . for there is no other way . . . to be happy in Jesus . . . than to trust and obey.

Trusting He is Enough,

Monica and Chuck

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