Welcome, 2019

… for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. Mat. 5:45

On this particular day, 1st January 2019, I feel a great sense of thanksgiving to God. The reason for this is because I feel He has been overly gracious to me. I can plainly say that during the last year, I cannot put myself anywhere near those who have been “good” and “just”. I have not only not done many things that I ought to have done; but I have also done things that I ought not to have done. And yet, come the year 2019, and I can clearly hear God whispering in my ear, “I love you.”

In Psalms 51:10-13, David wrote:

“10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. 11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. 12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. 13 Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee.”

After David had confessed his sin, he was given the chance to start doing anew what he loved doing best: teaching transgressors the ways of the Lord, and converting people to the Lord.

I feel forgiven, re-born, and ready to start anew. It is a difficult mountain to climb, this way of the cross. But through His Holy Spirit the Lord gives us a love for such a challenge. I cannot comprehend the joy that awaits me as I return again to the place of restoration, and to serving the Lord wholeheartedly.

It is therefore with a deep sense of thanksgiving  that I welcome the year 2019.

[I kick off this year with my favorite song]

Spiritual Discernment for Spiritual Transformation – Part 1

9 And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah?

10 And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.

11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake:

12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave… 1 Ki. 19:9-13

God moves “in waves”, so to speak, but you would be surprised to learn that His final wave occurred some 2,000 years ago when Christ died on the cross. Through Christ’s work on the cross, the church was born then, and God knew or thought He had finished His job. Luckily for Him, God does not slumber or sleep, otherwise He might have woken up to find He had made a deadly miscalculation. As He looked on in horror God saw men undo, right inside His church, the work that Christ had accomplished at the cross at such great cost.

You can read about all the apostasy that the early apostles came up against in the epistles.

Not long afterwards, the work of the cross lay dead and buried and forgotten. Instead, men began wearing wooden, silver and gold crosses around their necks and in various other parts of their bodies to signify that they carried the cross! Christ’s work was moved from the heart and into the realm of the physical. The cross was thus made of no effect.

But it is clear that in our day, God is at work again, restoring Christ’s work in our hearts.

This is the gist of this post. Join with me in Part 2 to see exactly how God effects this work in us.

[Below: The evening sun reflects off Lake Singidani in Singida]