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The One in the Mirror

  • The One in the Mirror from Refreshing Hope Ministries on Vimeo.

    Today I want to talk about our biggest problem, the one in the mirror, and the importance of living a disciplined life. Be wary of a watered down religion that costs you nothing, for true freedom always comes with a price. The enemy does not willingly let you go without a fight. James wrote it this way:

    (James 1:22–27 NASB)  But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does. If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man’s religion is worthless. Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

    James mentions three things:

    1. We are to control our tongue and stay free from gossip and slander, or our religion is worthless. You don’t have freedom of speech in the kingdom of God. Well you can, but you will be held accountable every word of it.

    (James 3:9–11 NASB)  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water?

    (Matthew 12:36–37 NASB)  “But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. “For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

    2. We are to care for the helpless who cannot take care of themselves. The widows and orphans of the day were the most helpless people in society, with no chance of earning a living. It does not mean helping the lazy, who are able to work, but would rather not. Paul wrote it this way:

    (2 Thessalonians 3:10–11 NASB)  For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either. For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies.

    3. We are to live a pure life unstained by the world. We are in the world, but not of the world. Our eternal home will be with God and everything that you see around you is temporary and will pass away. So don’t become too attached to it.

    What does this mean for me? That you may not be able to watch every movie or video out there, for what you see will get inside of you. You might not be able to read every book written, for some will not help you live a pure life. You may have to speak to people in love, instead of telling them what’s in your mind. You may have to practice restraint.

    Paul repeatedly called himself a bond-servant of Christ, set apart from the world (Romans 1:1). In other words, following Christ cost him a lot of fun in his life. That is what I want to talk about, self discipline, making your body behave so that you can reach your fullest potential.

    Jesus is our Redeemer, and we are saved by faith in Jesus Christ, but faith without works following it is useless (James 2:20). If your habits and activities have not changed since you met Jesus, well, they should.

    Consider Samson, the mighty deliverer in the book of Judges. Samson began his life with great expectations. Hardly anyone has been born with more potential except the Lord Jesus Christ, and John the Baptist. Samson was born to be the deliverer of Israel and was a man with a fantastic future. He was a nazarite from birth who was to never cut his hair, touch a dead body, or drink wine. He was set apart for the service of the Lord.

    The Spirit of God came on Samson early on and incredible miracles began to happen through him. The Jews expected great things as Samson came of age, but as his gifts grew stronger, his character grew weaker. His lack of discipline started early, and eventually his life became a mess. He tended to use his strength selfishly and wastefully, mostly to get what he wanted, women.

    After the Spirit of God came on Samson and enabled him to defeat 1,000 philistines, he celebrated by finding himself a prostitute for the evening (Judges 16:1). Then along came Delilah. She made three attempts to hand Samson over to the philistines, but he kept coming back. As Samson became more and more immersed in the world, he became insensitive to the fact that the Spirit of God could leave him. His powers were not unconditionally his. His strength was given to accomplish a task, delivering Israel, not chasing prostitutes. Finally the mighty Samson, became a slave of the enemy:

    (Judges 16:20–21 NASB)  She said, “The Philistines are upon you, Samson!” And he awoke from his sleep and said, “I will go out as at other times and shake myself free.” But he did not know that the LORD had departed from him. Then the Philistines seized him and gouged out his eyes; and they brought him down to Gaza and bound him with bronze chains, and he was a grinder in the prison.

    Samson kept playing with fire until he got burned, and a man with great potential, came to a tragic end. I know that the Lord will never leave you nor forsake you, and that the gifts and calling of God are irrevocable, but it didn’t stop Samson from squandering his life with prostitutes, and going to prison. Even Jesus told His disciples, why do you call me Lord, Lord, and not do what I tell you? (Luke 6:46). You should.

    The liberty we have in the Spirit is not a license to sin. If you want to reach your full potential in the kingdom of God then you will restrain yourself. Like Paul, it may cost you some fleshly fun in your life, but in the same way, it will protect and deliver you. Those who are willing and obedient will eat the good of the land (Isaiah 1:19).

    Jesus gives us the freedom to rise above our sins, freedom to live a holy life. Freedom that we never had before—the freedom to choose the right, the freedom to choose the best, the freedom to keep on growing, the freedom to reach our greatest potential, to put on the mind of Christ. That is to be free indeed, and it comes, according to scripture, from abiding in the Word of God, from knowing, and doing God’s Word.

    You can pray this with me if you like:

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, please help me get in tune with You and to become the best version of myself while here on Earth. Give me a boldness to take a stand for You. Help me see beyond the immediate, and to focus on eternity, in the name of Jesus Christ I pray. Amen.


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Social Sharing

19 comments
  • 0
Debi Burton
Debi Burton Amen Hallelujah
Jun 8
  • 2
Marisa Jackson
Marisa Jackson

Amen!!

Jun 7
  • 2
Schalk  de Beer
Schalk de Beer

Amen Lord Jesus, amen

Jun 7
  • 2
Patricia Walker
Patricia Walker

Amen. Thank you for a wonderful reminder to be the best version that God sees. Amen

Jun 8
  • 2
Mari Kaufmann
Mari Kaufmann

Thank you God. In the name of Jesus Amen 

Jun 8
  • 2
Jim Jarrell
Jim Jarrell

Amen! Thank You Lord!

Jun 8
  • 2
Kay Collinsworth
Kay Collinsworth

Amen!

Jun 8
  • 2
Wanda Pennington
Wanda Pennington

Amen 

Jun 8
  • 2
Dave and Sue Earlywine
Dave and Sue Earlywine

Amen thank you Jesus for all our blessings.

Jun 8
  • 1
Scott Riegelmann
Scott Riegelmann

Amen thank you Father for sending us Jesus and his spirit to guide and teach us how to live a life full of love.

Jun 8
  • 1
Linda Clark
Linda Clark

Amen 

Jun 8
  • 1
Jose Simo
Jose Simo

Heavenly Father I ask You to forgive our sins while we walk through this journey, to look ourselves in a mirror and see if what we see is what You meant us to be. Help us to follow Your designs, we pray this in the name of Your Son Jesus, Amen. Lead us Lord we love You. 

Great reminder Pastor, God bless you and Sylvia. 

Please pray for our daughter Cynthia who is having surgery this morning. 

Jun 8
  • 1
Deng Tembreza
Deng Tembreza

Prayers sent. PRAISE THE LORD

Jun 8
  • 1
Lynn Brown
Lynn Brown

Help me Father to be the person You created me to be, Amen!

Jun 8
  • 1
Jessica Anne
Jessica Anne

 I have not been living a pure life. I try and flounder. God help me, I cannot do this without him.

Jun 8
  • 1
Celeste Strenn
Celeste Strenn

thank you Lord, for Loving us and giving us your strength to live your way, I know there is no way I can ever do this, except in your armour, and in your strength

Jun 8
  • 1
Yvette York
Yvette York

Amen Good Morning Everyone 

Jun 8
  • 1
Liesel  aka  Lisa Wardle
Liesel aka Lisa Wardle

Amen!!!  O Lord God, der Heavenly Father, please help me by the power of Thy Holy Spirit to always stay in Your will and help me to put on the mind of Jesus Christ in all circumstances, in the holy name of Jesus Christ I ask and pray, Amen!  

Jun 9
  • 1
Wesley Paulus
Wesley Paulus

Amen!

Jun 9