What does this look like biblically? Lets look at some examples. 

 

Psalm 1     1-6 (GW)

Blessed is the person who does not

    follow the advice of wicked people,

        take the path of sinners,

            or join the company of mockers.

Rather, he delights in the teachings of the Lord

    and reflects on his teachings day and night.

He is like a tree planted beside streams—

    a tree that produces fruit in season

        and whose leaves do not wither.

He succeeds in everything he does.

Wicked people are not like that.

Instead, they are like husks that the wind blows away.

    That is why wicked people will not be able to stand in the judgment

        and sinners will not be able to stand where righteous people gather.

The Lord knows the way of righteous people,

    but the way of wicked people will end.

 

 What a wonderful blessing bestowed upon believers! 

 

 Wait? I know Christians who suffer and are poor. How could that be?  Yes there are professing believers who suffer. Death and sickness are something we have to deal with in the fallen world but the power is in our faith. How strong is your faith? Your faith and your thinking determines the blessings bestowed upon you. No trial can or will come upon you as a true follower of Christ that isn’t for your good. When you jumped in to Christ’s arms you hopped up on the potters wheel. It’s not easy being molded in to what Gods desires. We are so far away from perfection it is a slow and painful process. Many times we fight the potter “God” and cause our pain to be greater and prolonged.

 

 Our sickness, Injury, and Disease are all used to rid us of something worse; eternal spiritual disease. We all have heard the saying;”He had to hit rock bottom before he went for help”. God’s love is so abounding for us he will take us lower to make us strong. Remember that our God loves us so much that he knows every hair on our head! Our God hold everything in his hands. We may suffer but we can not die until God allows it and God will not allow it until our appointed day if we stay in faith. Unfortunately we don’t know how many days we have but God knows. Can that day be lessened for the unbeliever? Yes. This is how I know. When Jesus walked the Earth as a man he told this story.      

 

Matthew 13    GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

 A Story about a Farmer

13 That same day Jesus left the house and sat down by the Sea of Galilee. 2 The crowd that gathered around him was so large that he got into a boat. He sat in the boat while the entire crowd stood on the shore. 3 Then he used stories as illustrations to tell them many things.

He said, “Listen! A farmer went to plant seed. 4 Some seeds were planted along the road, and birds came and devoured them. 5 Other seeds were planted on rocky ground, where there was little soil. The plants sprouted quickly because the soil wasn’t deep. 6 But when the sun came up, they were scorched. They withered because their roots weren’t deep enough. 7 Other seeds were planted among thornbushes, and the thornbushes grew up and choked them. 8 But other seeds were planted on good ground and produced grain. They produced one hundred, sixty, or thirty times as much as was planted. 9 Let the person who has ears listen!”

10 The disciples asked him, “Why do you use stories as illustrations when you speak to people?”

 11 Jesus answered, “Knowledge about the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you. But it has not been given to the crowd. 12 Those who understand these mysteries will be given more knowledge, and they will excel in understanding them. However, some people don’t understand these mysteries. Even what they understand will be taken away from them. 13 This is why I speak to them this way. They see, but they’re blind. They hear, but they don’t listen. They don’t even try to understand. 14 So they make Isaiah’s prophecy come true:

‘You will hear clearly but never understand.

You will see clearly but never comprehend.

15 These people have become close-minded

        and hard of hearing.

            They have shut their eyes

            so that their eyes never see.

        Their ears never hear.

    Their minds never understand.

And they never return to me for healing!’

16 “Blessed are your eyes because they see and your ears because they hear. 17 I can guarantee this truth: Many prophets and many of God’s people longed to see what you see but didn’t see it, to hear what you hear but didn’t hear it.

18 “Listen to what the story about the farmer means. 19 Someone hears the word about the kingdom but doesn’t understand it. The evil one comes at once and snatches away what was planted in him. This is what the seed planted along the road illustrates. 20 The seed planted on rocky ground is the person who hears the word and accepts it at once with joy. 21 Since he doesn’t have any root, he lasts only a little while. When suffering or persecution comes along because of the word, he immediately falls from faith. 22 The seed planted among thornbushes is another person who hears the word. But the worries of life and the deceitful pleasures of riches choke the word so that it can’t produce anything. 23 But the seed planted on good ground is the person who hears and understands the word. This type produces crops. They produce one hundred, sixty, or thirty times as much as was planted.”

 

True believers; true followers of Christ are seeds that were planted on good ground and produced grain. They produced one hundred, sixty, or thirty times as much as was planted! True Men & Women in Christ produce good fruit and lots of it! Men and Women in Christ who give it their all are successful. 

 

  What defines success for a child of Christ? What defines success in the Lord is clearly written in his word.;The Bible. Another story Jesus told in the Book of Matthew was a story about a Treasure, a Merchant, and a Net

 

44 “The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field. When a man discovered it, he buried it again. He was so delighted with it that he went away, sold everything he had, and bought that field.

45 “Also, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant who was searching for fine pearls. 46 When he found a valuable pearl, he went away, sold everything he had, and bought it.

47 “Also, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea. It gathered all kinds of fish. 48 When it was full, they pulled it to the shore. Then they sat down, gathered the good fish into containers, and threw the bad ones away. 49 The same thing will happen at the end of time. The angels will go out and separate the evil people from people who have God’s approval. 50 Then the angels will throw the evil people into a blazing furnace. They will cry and be in extreme pain there.

51 “Have you understood all of this?”

“Yes,” they answered.

52 So Jesus said to them, “That is why every student of the Scriptures who has become a disciple of the kingdom of heaven is like a home owner. He brings new and old things out of his treasure chest.”

53 When Jesus had finished these illustrations, he left that place.

 

  A successful christian finds that fine pearl and abounds in love. A successful christian takes his net and casts it out spreading the good news of Christ and drawing in the elect in Christ. Those who do not have the faith make Isaiah’s prophecy come true:

 

‘You will hear clearly but never understand.

You will see clearly but never comprehend. 

These people have become close-minded

and hard of hearing.

They have shut their eyes

so that their eyes never see.

Their ears never hear.

Their minds never understand.

And they never return to me for healing!’

 

  Christ will Heal the pure believer until their appointed time! The believer abounding in faith and love. A believer abounding in faith and love knows the will of God and will desire to do the things God wants. This is true in our everyday lives. If a pure believer abounding in faith and love suffers from a disease or injury you can be certain it is to advance his kingdom. Keep believing for healing and proclaiming his truths and good news. God will deliver you! You will not suffer more than you can handle while on the potters wheel. With faith, love, and the correct attitude you will see that this life isn’t something that must be endured. This life is something to enjoy! Enjoyment and delight come from serving God no matter the hardships. It only becomes hard when our faith fails and our love darkens because it is in those times Gods blessing is withheld. The devil abounds when our faith fails and love is darkened.

 

 Take your talents, your skills and use them to advance the good news of Christ. You will prosper in Christ. No evil formed against you will prosper!

 With love and the good news of Christ, I desire nothing more than God’s will on earth as it is in Heaven.
                     Truly, 
                  Joseph R. Stansel

Praying

What does God require of me?

Have you ever wondered what God wants with you? What am I supposed to be doing with my life? What does life in Christ look like?

Let’s go over a few truths concerning this because there are many ideas some true and many false on this topic.

 

Lets start here with Philippians 1:9-10 ESV  And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ,

 

 When Paul was writing to the body of Christ in Philippi you see here that Love was the key to discernment & knowledge.

 

 In our walk with Christ discernment & knowledge is important because this is how we are in communication with his spirit. The more Love that abounds the more knowledge we gain from the spirit from discernment. This knowledge is how we know what is excellent, what is true, what is good in our lives. If we live in Love, Love for Christ we will abound with knowledge and know his direction for our lives. 

 This is an attribute of God and should be an attribute we desire. Psalm 86:15  But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.