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Grace is appropriated through faith for the renewing of our minds – that we might be obedient to the faith and experience the perfecting of our faith through the work of grace.

This is not a play on words; it is the way we mature as children of God.

The grace I am thinking of:

  • The Father working in us (Philippians 2:13);
  • Jesus making us (Matthew 4:19); and,
  • The Holy Spirit transforming us (2Corinthians 3:18).

Isn’t it amazing and incredibly encouraging that each person of the Godhead has taken responsibility for our spiritual development and progress!!

So, how do we appropriate this inward grace? We do so by choosing to join the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the work they are doing (note: “choosing” is the operative word).

How does that happen? What can one do to engage in the sanctifying, transforming, and faith-increasing work of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit? How does one respond to their invitation of a good work, done in us?

We do so by practicing the grace-empowered disciplines God has provided!

For example, we are encouraged by Paul to set our minds on things above, not on things on the earth (Colossians 3:2). This is a process and a challenge. We are not sufficient of ourselves to think of anything as being from ourselves, but our sufficiency is from God (2Corinthians 3:5). To join in His process for the (re)setting of our mind:

  1. We must choose to hear Colossians 3:2 as God’s word for each of His children (Romans 10:17). That requires the disciplines of Bible study and prayer.
  2. We must choose obedience to the faith that now resides in our heart (Romans 1:5).
  3. We must choose to meditate on His word (another discipline), that faith and desire would increase.
  4. We must choose to commit our way to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, trusting them to bring our transformation to pass (Psalm 37:5).
  5. We must choose to respond to the Holy Spirit’s prompting when opportunities present themselves for the work of faith (James 2:22).

We must choose! Choosing is a big part of spiritual discipline! Read the rest of this entry »

God often challenges us to become or do something that is impossible.  For some, that is simply making it through one more day.  I have a friend who is paralyzed from the waist down.  Facing the day with thanksgiving and joy are not automatics for anyone in that situation.

How does he do it?  He does not wake up considering the challenges that face him, whether he is capable of overcoming them.  He simply chooses to get up.

When God calls us to do or become something impossible, we often deceive ourselves by focusing on the difficulty of the doing or becoming.  In these moments, we must remind ourselves that God is working in us to will and do to His good pleasure (Philippians 2:13).  He is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we can ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

The doing and making are God’s business.  Our sole responsibility is the choice of participation.  Oh, but our minds, they do like to play tricks on us.  Rather than face the difficult choice, we contemplate the impossibility of the doing or becoming.  Consequently, we are often distracted from the great things God would do in and through us.

Don’t let that be you.  Don’t fall for the deception.

Commit your way to the Lord,
Trust also in Him,
And He shall bring it to pass.
Psalm 37:5

God bless you with focus on the choice.

Humbly yours and forever His,

Rob

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