And He gave some…

And He gave some…

And He (Jesus Christ) gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ (Ephesians 4:11-12 KJV)

As Christians, aren’t  we grateful for the “some” that God gave to! The Apostle Paul clearly states that Jesus gave some… for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ…

Perfecting of the saints…I like the definition, “especially suitable,” having all the necessary or essential characteristics required for a given situation.  A Christian should be “especially suited” for his or her role as a believer in Christ Jesus in any given situation…How? By faith…Believing and knowing that there is a higher power, a divine purpose, and a bigger picture in all things…Those who help to “perfect” our walk in Christ help us to build up our faith.  The Bible says that,  “Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Romans 10:17).  Those who preach and teach the Word of God help to “perfect” our faith!

For the work of the ministry…Of course, we know the word, “work” refers to labor…putting forth action and effort.  But what does “work” mean in this particular verse since we do NOT work for our salvation? (It is the gift of God…Romans 3) I believe it means the day-to-day “walk” of our Christian life that produces the Fruit of the Spirit:  Love, Joy, Peace, Longsuffering, Gentleness, Goodness, and Faith…”IF we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25 KJV).  The effectual “work of the ministry” requires the Fruit of the Spirit…We must “love” our brethren as well as our enemies. The “joy” of the Lord is our strength (Neh. 8:10) . “Peace” is identified as one of our spiritual garments to wear (Ephesians 6).  “Longsuffering” is a means to build patience (and patience builds hope).  “Gentleness” denotes the inward and outward manifestation of a Holy Spirit-filled life., “Goodness” denotes our inward thoughts, motives, attitude, and actions that honor Christ, and “Faith” is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not yet seen (Hebrews 11:1).  All of these,  perfecting, working, and edifying produce the “work of the ministry.”

“The edifying of the body of Christ“…The word “edify” means to build-up, to strengthen, and to encourage…The body of Christ is built up both physically and spiritually  when another “soul” is born into the kingdom.  The body of Christ is strengthened as we grow stronger and more knowledgable in the Word and work of the Lord. The body of Christ is encouraged as we “pray for one another” and “bear one another’s burden” that we may be filled and lacking no good thing.  Amen…

So, today, as Christians we are all accountable and responsible for the “SOME” to whom Jesus gave.  We should all be, “Workman that needeth not be ashamed…” ( II Timothy 2:15)

As a member of the Body of Christ, we each have a job and responsibility to do.  We need not “work” for our salvation for Christ paid it all and finished it all on Calvary. But, we must all “work” while the day is dawning for the “perfecting of the saints,” “for the work of the ministry,” and “for the edifying of the body.”  Won’t you be an effectual “laborer” today?  I know I am going to pray to do so…Amen…

Remember, God Loves You

Lin T Rollins, Author

copyright by Lin T Rollins…

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A Worthy Walk…

A Worthy Walk…

I Therefore, the prisoner of the LORD, beseech (beg) you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called…(Ephesians 4:1 KJV).

In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus, he strongly testifies of his personal calling to preach and teach the Word of God as well as to “live” consistently according to its teachings.

In chapter four of Ephesians, Paul “begs” (beseech) that we, as followers of Christ, WALK worthy of the VOCATION wherewith we are called.  We all know that the word, “WALK” is an action verb meaning to “make movement” by putting “one leg before the other.”  But, with a little further research, the word “walk” actually means that one foot stays “positioned” on or in contact with the ground as the other foot moves forward or backwards. (Oh, how we need “grounded” Christians!) Nevertheless, as oppose to the action verb, run, which means that the feet move more rapidly resulting in both feet being off or leaving the ground momentarily during the onward stride….Mmmm…Interesting!

Now, let’s look closer at the word, “vocation.”  The word “vocation” means somebody’s work, job, or profession, especially a type of work demanding special commitment.  It also means: a strong feeling of being destined or called to undertake a specific type of work, especially a sense of being chosen by God for religious work or a religious lifeAmazing!  (Many are called, but few are chosen!)

Paul  instructs; no he actually begs, Christians (followers of Christ)  to “Walk” (keeping one foot on the ground at all times!) worthy (something that holds value or someone who is morally upright, good, and deserving respect)  of the vocation (a calling upon our lives that requires special commitment) wherewith we are called at all times!  A daily “walk” with Christ…A daily commitment in our relationship with Christ!

Personally, I like the concept, “walk;” meaning to keep one foot on the ground at all times.  To me, that means a “well-balanced,” grounded  life…In other words, not getting ahead of ourselves or falling too far behind, but rather maintaining a steady, manageable pace. I also like the concept that I, as a believer, am to “walk worthy” (placing value upon being upright and deserving in a world that places little value on anything good or right!) in the “vocation” (the call upon a Christian’s life that requires commitment) at all times.  Steady; steady; steady as we go!!!!

In other words, I am to “walk” one-step-at-a-time. I am to take each day one-day-at-a-time. I am to face each event or obstacle one-happening-at-a-time.  Why?  Because, should I increase my speed too much I can fall down and hurt myself as well as others.  Should I decrease my step too much I can fall too far behind or even left behind and not be found worthy of the vocation upon my life….A “BALANCED,” well-maintained, steady….one-day-at-a-time…wonderful, joyous WORTHY WALK in Christ Jesus!

Whew…I don’t know about you, but that brings a little bit of relief into my life!  I don’t have to be concerned about the Christian I might be tomorrow, if I simply “walk” the path of my vocation as a Christian today….one step at a time….keeping one foot on the ground at all times!  Not too fast….not too slow…steady as we go….

As the old eastern proverbs goes….”A million mile journey begins with one step.”  One step!  One step at a time!  One foot leaving the ground while the other foot remains steadfast on the ground…not running, not sprinting, not galloping….just walking!

I don’t know about you, but today I think I am just simply going to WALK with my Lord one glorious step at a time!  Amen!!

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T Rollins

Author

Copyright: Lin T Rollins

 

The Power of a Testimony…

Testify…The Power of a Testimony…

And, many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him (Jesus Christ) for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did.” (John 4:39 KJV)

The above verse is often referred to by many Christians as the account of,  “The Woman at the Well.”   Truly, one of my favorite New Testament accounts.  Interesting enough, this particular verse references to the fact that “many of the Samaritans believed,” because of the woman’s testimony…

How amazing that one woman’s testimony of Jesus Christ changed the course of history, for all eternity, by simply “telling” her fellow countrymen what Christ had done for her…”He told me all that ever I did.”   And, according to the Bible because “many of the Samaritans of that city believed,” they inherited eternal life.  (For whosoever believes in Him shall never perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16).

Notice, the Bible does NOT say that neither she, the woman at the well, nor the believing citizens of Samaria gained eternal life by attending a Bible conference, seminary, joining a particular church or denomination, or conducting some type of believer’s ritual…It simply says that “she believed,” and they “believed her testimony!” And, as simple as this conversion is…it made it into the pages of our Bible!

It is sad that “man” has so complicated the simplicity of believing that Jesus Christ is who He says He is…The Son of God!  The woman at the well believed and it not only provided her with a conversion, but “many” in the city where she lived.

Today, like “all” born-again believers, I have a testimony…I know what Jesus has done and continues to do for me…I have a personal relationship with the only begotten Son of God.  From the time I first “believed” in Jesus, He put things into my heart that are pleasing to Him.  I love to read and study His word; The Bible.  I love being around other believers.  I love attending church services and partaking in both cooperate and private worship.  I love singing and listening to the songs of Zion, spiritual songs, and hymns.  And, I love talking about Jesus with others….”Come, see a man which told me all things that ever I did; is not this the Christ?” 

I believe it would be wise to never underestimate The Power of a Testimony…it can change the course of lives for “many,” and of history for all eternity…

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T Rollins

copyright: Lin T Rollins

The Gift of God…

The Gift of God…

For by Grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the Gift of God…Ephesians 2:8 KJV

Who doesn’t enjoy receiving a gift from someone?  I suppose most of us can look back at a particular gift we received and what delight it brought into our lives at the time.  Nevertheless, usually, with time the “new” wears off and we either pack the gift away, or we may even toss it into the garbage.  In other words, earthly gifts come and earthly gifts go.

But, not God’s gift of Salvation…It lasts for all eternity; the newness never wears off!  God’s gift is wrapped in the Blood of his own Son, Jesus Christ that takes away the “sins of the world.”  No gift can compare to God’s everlasting gift.

Yet; so many people choose not to receive this gift for one reason or another.  But, the Bible points out one reason for their tragic decision…Salvation is “not of yourselves…”  In other words, some people just can’t accept God’s gift of salvation when “they” don’t have something to do with it or have a part in it that makes “them” feel good about themselves!  To receive God’s gift of salvation by faith, a person must confess that he or she NEEDS something and someone more powerful, more greater, and more intelligent than they can ever be.  To receive God’s gift, we must confess that we cannot, on our own, “save” ourselves!  ..Sadly enough, that is nearly impossible for some “self-made” people to do or to admit.  They would prefer a “salvation” made of works so that they can “boast” of their own accomplishments…Sad….

Ah…But, for those of us who have “received” God’s gift what a difference it has made in our lives.  Personally, I am just fine with “needing” a bigger, holier, sovereign God who sees all and knows all and is directing my foot steps.  Hallelujah!  I am very pleased that I have someone with me all the way…Someone who is superior and far above anything that I can ever think or do!  God!

God personally paid for His gift of salvation with the precious, sinless life of His only Son.  It cost God a great deal to be able to give you and me this “free” gift of salvation.

Today, if you have not, for one reason or another, accepted God’s gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ, I pray that you will receive it before it is too late.  God’s gift  of Grace and Mercy that brings into our lives eternal Salvation is only available for a set period of time according to God’s own design and plan…And, no man knows the exact hour and day that specific time for receiving God’s gift will run out.  The Bible teaches that “today is the day of salvation.”   Friend, won’t you call upon God today and ask Him for His precious gift of Salvation?  Oh, what a precious gift…The Gift of God…

(John 3:16-17; Romans 10)

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T Rollins

Generations Come and Go…

Generations Come and Go…

“Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains….(Ecclesiastes 1:3)

On days when I am feeling a tad bit more “philosophical,” there’s no better place to turn than the book of Ecclesiastes.  The words of wisdom from Solomon’s pen brings “everything” going on around me into focus…

All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. The eye never has enough of seeing, nor the ear its fill of hearing. What has been will be, and there is nothing new under the sun.”  All of these words, phrases, and sentences letting me know that those things that appear to be “out of control” are actually in God’s full control.  I needn’t worry.

Generations come and generations go.”  Sometimes, people get so full of themselves and filled with pride towards their “amazing understandings” of earthly things.  They seem to think that all of their “spiritualities” and keen awarenesses into all matters sets them far above others and that others should be so impressed with their acute accomplishments, insights, and intelligences.  And, at times, I suppose that we all can get caught up in a person’s abilities, attributes, accomplishments and characteristics…But, we need to be reminded that God is Not!  For ours is not the first generation of good and evil; and until the Lord returns it won’t be the last.

When it comes down to “rubber meeting the road” we all get into our pants one leg at a time.  We all have strengths and weaknesses.  We all fall short of the glory of God.  Our “new” concepts are ancient as old in God’s eyes.  Our abilities are “no” abilities outside of God’s will for our lives.  And, nothing is new that hasn’t already been done before, according to scriptures…

I believe there are approximately six hundred billion people on planet earth; give or take.  Have you ever thought of the enormous amount of numbers of people God has actually dealt with over ions of time?  Of course, there are those who made the superlative list like Adam, Noah, Moses, David, Solomon, John, Paul, Peter, Matthew, Stephen…etc…But, for the most part the remainder of “us” are average, give or take a few here and there.  Humans making our way through a very complex often time unclear path of life… One day at a time and hoping that we are making the most of each day given unto us…God have mercy!

But, God is and always will be in control.  He is the Alpha and Omega…the beginning and the end..the one true “fixture” of all time that is, was, and is to come!  The same yesterday, today, and forever.   Who else can “boast” of such attributes, characteristics, and accomplishments!!  None other than God, the Messiah…The Prince of Peace, The Everlasting Father, The King of Kings and Lord of Lords…Ahh….faith, hope, and truth…Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life!”

So, do you need a little reminder today, as we all do from time to time, that when all things seems “out of control,” that the Great I Am is in full control as Generations Come and Generations Go??!!  As the Bible teaches, HE has seen it all before, and He will see it all until He comes for his bride; the church.

I’m glad to say that I am a member of His blood-bought, redeemed church through Christ Jesus and that no matter what the morrow might hold, I know who holds tomorrow!  Generations Come and Generations Go, but our God reigns supreme forever and forever…Amen.

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T Rollins

Copyright by Lin T Rollins

The Power of Thoughts

The Power of Thoughts…

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. (Philippians 4:8 KJV)

In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the church at Philippi, he addressed the very discipline of a man’s “thoughts.”  Paul instructed the early church Christians to “think” on those things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, good, and praise worthy.  Paul obviously knew “The Power of Thoughts!”

As we all know, every action we take begins with a “thought.”  Every word we speak begins with a “thought.”  Our never-ending 24/7 mind produces countless numbers of thoughts and images per minute!  If you are like me, you can be pondering one thought when two more will suddenly pop in!  Controlling “thoughts” is sometimes nearly impossible…So, to discipline ourselves to “think” upon those things which are lovely, honest, good, and true can be a challenge; especially in today’s society…Why?

Well, I’m certainly not an expert on the subject, but each day our society is bombarded with everything but “thoughts” that are lovely, pure, and good…For one thing, our non-stop secular news media does its very best to convince us all that being “good,” “decent,” and “pure” is old-fashioned, unpopular, ignorant, backwards, and unintelligent…After all, haven’t we become a man-eat-man society where only the fittest survive!  If you don’t believe me, just look at the way our nation’s politicians run their campaigns!  If you don’t have the stomach for slinging mud, putting a spin on everything, and believing that most Americans are dumb and stupid and cannot read between the lines then you would most likely NOT do well running for public office!  VERY SAD!

Then, there are all the disgraceful reality TV shows that parade “stupid” like it is our nation’s number one commodity!  Who (those of us 50 and older!) would have ever believed that untalented and grossly ugly men and women belching out perverse profanities as well as sickening burps and body gases would one day take the places of Andy, Barney, Lucy, and Ethel?!!  Not to dare mention that finding a husband or wife would come down to choosing the love-of-your-life from last season’s rejects!  (I had to shake my head and laugh at that one!  Bless their hearts!)

So, where do we go to find “pure” and “lovely” thoughts in today’s world?  Sadly, even our churches and immediate families have taken on a “competitive” spirit where it is more accepted to believe the “worse” in someone than to think upon the “good.”  As a result, for those of us who wish for the “good” and “pure” thoughts in life, it has become like salmon swimming up-stream!  The answer to “where do we go” lies within our own self-will, concepts, and choices…Choosing to “think” like the Apostle Paul instructed is a “choice” that can only be sustained and empowered by the Holy Spirit of God.

The very intelligent, highly educated Apostle Paul knew what he was talking about.  He, too, lived in a sinful world filled with hypocrisies, jealousies, and sensationalized happenings and events.  After all, he was in front-row attendance when one of the church’s very first deacons was seized and stoned to death for his powerful teachings of Jesus Christ…So, disciplining ourselves to “think” upon “these things” (pure, lovely, and of good report) is NOT new and has NEVER been easy…It is a choice!

Right now, like many of you, I have a dozen or more things that I could “choose” to think about in a critical, very sad, heart-broken, and detrimental way.  I have foes just like anyone else; some in my own immediate family. It’s hard to not want to think “negatively” about these things and to slash out and seek revenge…I know…I have walked that path and it doesn’t help things one tiny bit; but it can make them worse!

As I get older, I am learning more and more everyday to “choose” to put it ALL in God’s hands and “think” upon those things that are “lovely” and of “good” report.  Life is just too short not to follow Paul’s instructions… If not…I could just as easily go crazy as the next fellow!  Ahhh….But, I am learning to “choose” the peaceful thoughts of things being “of good report” as I yield myself to God’s unseen hand.

So, for me, I believe that the ONLY way to “think” upon those things which are lovely and of good report is to put my complete trust, hope, and faith in Sovereign God and trust that “ALL” things are working together for the “good” of those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

It’s not always easy to discipline our thoughts, but it’s always the “right” thing to do…Oh, my friend, The Power of Thoughts

Remember, God Loves You!  (A very lovely thought!)

Lin T. Rollins, Author

All blogs are under copyright by Lin T Rollins

Every Title That Can be Given…

Every Title That Can be Given…

“And seated him (Jesus Christ) at his (God’s) right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. (Ephesians 1: 20-21 NIV).

Do titles impress you?  Of course they do.  We would be telling a lie if we denied that our heads can sometimes be easily turned by a person’s title and status in life.

Several years ago, I attended a motivational conference for educators.  When my party arrived we were running a few minutes late due to congested traffic.  Seated at our table was a very well-dressed lady. She was very charming and possessed a very kind, attentive demeanor.  As I sat down, she spoke to me.  I reciprocated the conversation and we both made a couple of “educational” jokes about the role of a classroom teacher.  We both laughed. Then, she asked my name and where we were from.  As I was introducing myself, the room suddenly fell silent as the speaker standing at the podium introduced our state’s school board superintendent.  You can only imagine my surprise when the lady I was talking with stood up and gave the audience a smile and wave!  Kindly, she smiled down at me, patted me on the shoulder, and made her way to the stage.  When I turned around in shock to look at my peers, one of the male teachers in our group was laughing almost uncontrollably and commented, “You mean you really didn’t know who she was?”  Of course, it was weeks before I lived that one down!

Before I knew for certain who the lady actually was, I was just being my typical “southern,” never-meet-a-stranger, authentic self.  After I discovered who she was, it quickly changed my entire perspective. I would have never made such light-hearted comments about the teaching profession had I known I was making them directly to the state’s superintendent!  How easily “titles” can change things!

However, have you ever seriously considered all of the titles that God placed upon His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ?  The Apostle Paul describes Jesus as, “Far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and EVERY TITLE that can be given…”  Amazing. So, ask yourself this question, “If we can be so impressed at times with earthly titles, how is it that we can be so disregarding towards the King of Kings and Lord of Lords?”  His “title” is “far above” all other titles.  Amen.

Today, we may all need a renewing awareness and a deeper enlightenment of who Jesus Christ actually is.  He is no longer a baby in Bethlehem.  He is no longer a poor carpenter’s son.  He is no longer an innocent man hanging on a cross.  He is no longer the man placed inside a borrowed tomb…He is the Resurrected Son of God; creator of the universe.  He is the Almighty Prince of Peace; the Everlasting Father.  KIng of Kings; Lord of Lords…The Eternal One whereby all Power is Given in Heaven and on earth.

Oh, yes my friend, the majestic, everlasting titles of Jesus Christ are FAR ABOVE Every Title That Can be Given!  Let me ask you this most important question.  “Do you know him today?  Do you know him personally as your Lord and Savior?”  If not, I want to introduce you to a man whose life can and will change your life…Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God.  (John 3:16…For God gave his only begotten Son (Jesus Christ) that whosoever shall believe in Him shall have everlasting life.) Amen.

Remember, God Loves You!

Lin T. Rollins, Author

All blogs are copyrighted by Lin T Rollins

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