SHAPED BY HIS LOVE

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“He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will--to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.”

Ephesians 1:5-6

God prepared in advance what he wants us to become in Him. Both the weakness and the strength of the human character depend on self-control. This means that character is dependent on the capacity to prevent our fleshly desires to control the way that we approach life and behave in it. This attitude defines our personality. In other words, self-control, as the foundation of character, is the ability that a person nurtures in order to decide to rule over their emotions with regard to their relationships with others.

Speaking from experience, the psalmist David said, “Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Take delight in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:3-4).

Every good relationship needs to be founded on trust. It is incredible to see that for some people, it is very difficult to place their trust in God. It is possible that they ask themselves, “How can I trust in something that I can’t see?” If someone cannot trust in what he cannot see, how can he possibly love that thing? The Apostle John said, “Whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen” (1 John 4:20). As we learn to love and trust those we see, it will be easier to love and trust the Almighty God who we do not see. The Psalmist then takes us to a higher level of understanding by telling us to, “Take delight in the Lord.” This means to enjoy every moment that we spend with Him. This will move His heart and extend His mercy towards each one of us. It will give us what our hearts desire.

Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will bring it to pass” (Psalm 37:5). We are the result of yesterday’s decisions, and we will be what we decide today. This is the reason why divine counsel compels us not to make decisions that do not reach divine approval. God is pleased when we act in this way trusting Him is like depositing our treasure in the safe box of heaven. When we do this, the Lord rewards us, “He shall bring forth his righteousness as the light, and his judgment as the noonday” (Psalm 37:6). The Psalmist goes on to say, “Be still before the LORD, and wait patiently for him…” (Psalm 37:7). I believe that this is the most difficult task for some people. To keep silent before God is a great discipline. Life’s pressures lead people to despair, anger and curse. Being still and staying silent is knowing that God has everything under control, and that He will be glorified. Knowing this will give us the victory in all things.

SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT
In the days of the great Whitefield revival, it was a common practice to mock popular preachers. Three young men in a tavern placed bets on who could most successfully imitate Whitefield. Each one gave a speech, mocking the gestures and the voice of the well-known preacher. The last one stood very confidently, and shouted, “I will win this competition!” He stood on a bench as applause and cheers filled the tavern. He opened the Bible at random, and read, “Unless you repent, you too will all perish.” After reading these words he could hardly find words to mock the preacher. The weight of the Word of God in this sentence penetrated his heart like a sword. He began to shake and stepped off the bench. He became pale and dumbfounded, while everyone kept silent. After some time, this young man came to salvation through repentance and became the most noted preacher of that revival after Whitefield himself.

TODAY'S DECLARATION
"I have the seal of the character of Jesus stamped on my heart. I am the result of His love and His compassion."

Today's post is an excerpt from Pastor Cesar Castellanos' book, Declarations of Power for 365 Days of the Year: Volume Three.

TODAY'S BIBLE READING

    • Old Testament: 1 Chronicles 23-25; Psalms 135
    • New Testament: Luke 9:28-36; 1 Thessalonians 1

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