I just spent some time listening to an amazing Pastor/Teacher share from his heart. Today more than ever before we need to be on mark in what we believe and stand for. Many Christians today are on the fence basing decisions on their feelings or where they are financially, this my friend is a very dangerous place to stand.
We see false teaching in many churches and on TV today. We are seeing "politically correct" versions of the Bible pop up with great popularity as they allow the justification of a sinful lifestyle and candy coating on many issues that are not suggestions in the Bible however they are commands or instruction from God.
My friend and Pastor Gabriel Stovall has always been a man of integrity and honesty, not fearing the truth of God's word. He is known for speaking as God wrote the words and being bold in the truth.
Below is something he shared recently that really can impact your life today. You may be offended, which is fine the Word of God is meant to shape us not always make us feel good. You may find comfort and peace in these words to have some kind of meaning behind what is going on in your life. Take a few moments and read what Pastor Gabriel has to share and pray about the words to see what the message in this would be from the Lord to you personally.
In Mark chapter two, a paralyzed man was carried through the roof of a house to be healed by Jesus. When Jesus found him, before He lifted a healing hand toward the man, Jesus said: "Your sins are forgiven you."
In John 5, after He healed the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, he told the man in verse 14: "See, you are well again. Stop sinning, or something worse may happen to you."
In Mark 8, when Jesus was telling His disciples about the manner in which He would die, Peter began to rebuke his Master and tell him that death would not be in the cards for Christ. Peter was merely speaking from the humanistic perspective that said: "I don't want to lose this person who has meant so much to me."
And Jesus knew it. But His response was no less stern: "Get behind me satan," he said to Peter. Then what He said next was so crucial: "You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely HUMAN concerns."
Long before Jesus physically came on the scene, the prophet Isaiah quoted God the Father as saying: "My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts," says the LORD. "And My ways are far beyond anything you can imagine." (Isaiah 55:8, NLT)
What does it all mean?
Perhaps the reason why we haven't received some of the things we desire in a physical sense is because God sees that in a spiritual sense we aren't ready.
It means that what impresses God is not the same as what impresses man. What God sees as powerful, mature, strong, noble and important often is the antithesis of what we as humans see.
It also means that God, especially seen through His Son Jesus, is far more concerned about our SPIRITUAL health than He is about our PHYSICAL well being.
So, if you're looking for a God that wants to make you rich and tangibly prosperous BEFORE He makes you whole and spiritually mature, you won't like this Jesus. Don't take my words to the other extreme. I'm not saying Jesus wants us to be broke, poor and destitute.
But I do believe that if it takes the stripping away of our comforts in order to get us to look like and be more like Him, then it just very well may happen.
I believe that when we truly get serious about understanding the mind of Christ, we will discover that many of the things we spend so much time striving for, longing for, pursuing after and even praying for, are things that Christ is, at best, minimally concerned with.
I don't know about you, but I want to re-align my life with the mind of Christ. I want to do so until I find that I'd rather make Him smile and people frown than the opposite. I'd rather hear Him say, "well done," than church folks say it. I'd rather be found faithful than popular.
I admit that I still have quite a way to go before I'm there as consistently as I should be. But it's worth the work. And both in the meantime, and in the end, the payoff of being spiritually healthy is worth the rigor of the journey to get there.
You can find out more about Pastor Gabriel Stovall and New Life Christian Church by clicking here.