“Hezekiah began to reign when he was five and twenty years old, and he reigned nine and twenty years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Abijah, the daughter of Zechariah. And he did that which was right in the sight of the Lord, according to all that David his father had done. He in the first year of his reign, in the first month, opened the doors of the house of the Lord, and repaired them. And he brought in the priests and the Levites, and gathered them together into the east street, and said unto them, Hear me, ye Levites, sanctify now yourselves, and sanctify the house of the Lord God of your fathers, and carry forth the filthiness out of the holy place.” II Chronicles 29:1-5
“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” I Corinthians 6:19-20
These three days of the Women’s Christmas Tea at Calvary Chapel Green Valley, here in Las Vegas, Sister Debbi Bryson is speaking about the reason that Jesus came to this earth. While wrapping up her presentation each night, she is reaching out to those who are unsaved to accept Christ into their hearts. It is to be expected, after all, since that is the reason Jesus came, and praise God that many of the women are turning to Jesus for the first time! I was blessed to serve the first night, that being last night, and I was also blessed to hear her speak. But, it was the second part of her closure that was the blessing for me.
You see, that morning, there was a word spoken from the Lord that I had received and knew I needed to follow. The word was that there is a mighty river that is flowing and Jesus died so that we may have more than what we have chosen to have. We need to get into the river and experience the victorious life He has given.
Well, Sister Debbi then reached out to those women who were not living their lives for Christ anymore, who had accepted Jesus but had become prodigals. If at any point we have begun to rely on our own strength to live our lives and not rely on Christ, or if we have known Him and then turned back to our past lives and have tried to live with one foot in the world and one foot in Christ, we are not experiencing the victorious life. We are not living for Christ, and we are not being abundantly blessed, nor are we truly blessing others. We have become as prodigals. When she reached out to those women who knew they needed a fresh start with Christ, who needed a re-do, I was watching from the youth room on a monitor and I knew I, too, needed a fresh start.
You see, like many of us, I have been trying to do things myself.
Yes, I teach the kids at church on Sundays.
Yes, I read my Bible daily.
Yes, I pray.
However, in my personal life, I have been striving in my own strength, attempting to make happen what only the Lord could. Well, what only He could make happen for my best, in His perfect timing for me, anyway. I admit, it has been a struggle since time continues to move forward and things seemingly have not changed. So, my efforts had begun to come forth, and my patience has been strained, but God knows. He will always give us a way of escape, even if we need to escape ourselves.
God gave the message in the morning and then convicted my heart to my own selfish living. So, I have turned back to Him, being the temple of the Holy Spirit, and have allowed Him to resume to clear out again those things I had brought back in. There is quite a bit, and this is a process that will last the rest of my life, but I’ve jumped into the river, and through the victory at the Cross, I’m choosing to trust God and allow the Holy Spirit to do the internal work. The Cross was always the goal, and that is why Jesus came to be with us.
Jesus was born of a virgin to be sinless and end up on the Cross to save souls from eternal damnation and bring them into eternal life, transforming sinners into saints, but He also ended up on that Cross to sanctify the saints, if we but keep our faith grounded in His finished work.
So, fellow members of the Body of Christ, are you really living the victorious life more abundant, or are you striving and moving away from the Lord? Well, there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, no shame. The Lord Jesus died for us to have all that He has to give and He knows us. He knew us before we were born.
You’re saved. You’re the temple of the Holy Spirit. So, jump into the river and be cleansed by the flow of Living Waters. Let Him sanctify you. Bring your faith from yourself back to the Cross and set down all your strife, and get a robe, get a ring, eat the fattened calf, be blessed like never before and live victoriously. Jesus is waiting right where you are and He wants to give you all He has for you, for all of us.
There is a river that never will run dry. Get in it. Get back in it.