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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Don’t Expect Heaven On Earth

In summary of Ephesians 4:22-24 it says, “Throw off, change your former way of life which is corrupted by lust, deception and deceitful desires; and take on an entirely new way - a God-fashioned life in which you let the Spirit inside you renew your thoughts and attitudes.  Then put on your new nature, clothe yourself with the new person, and allow this to work itself into your conduct making you more like God’s image in justice and true holiness while God accurately reproduces his character in you.”

Bottom Line:
Change your former way of living, which was corrupted by things of this world and take on a new way to live.  Allow God’s Spirit in you to renew your thoughts, attitudes and ways of thinking.  Then each day put on our new nature (like you would put on new clothes), allow the His Spirit to work in your life, making you more like God’s character each day.

What this means to me:
This scripture instructs me to to get rid of my former nature (my old self / way of thinking), which characterized the way I had lived before (it was corrupted by lusts and desires that sprang from the world's ways), and instead be constantly renewed by the fresh mental and spiritual attitude, putting on a new regenerated self, one that is created in God’s image in justice and true holiness.  There is a difference between taking on God’s character versus being like God.  I often try to take on God’s role by trying to control my circumstances, the future or people around me.  I can never be God and he doesn’t want me to be.  Instead he wants me to become godly, taking on his values, attitudes, and character - “take on an entirely new way of life.”  I must realize that God’s ultimate goal for me here on the Earth is not comfort, but rather character development.  He wants me to grow and become more like Christ, but still within my own uniqueness.  It’s about transforming my character not my personality.  Life can often be difficult, it’s this way to grow me.  I have to remember Earth is not Heaven!  Having an abundant life is not having it easy and using God as my personal genie who grants me what I want.  I must not forget that life is not about me, and that I exist for God’s purposes.  My time here on earth is my training ground to build strength and character for later in Heaven.  So today I will focus on taking on and displaying God’s character in my thinking, while still being my own unique personality.  I will open for how God wants to use me today.