Powered By Blogger

Saturday, January 31

In this hour of darkness, it's OUR TIME to Shine...

"When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked bears rule, the people mourn."  (Proverbs 29:2)

Jesus tells us:
"Ye are the light of the world.  A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.  Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candle-stick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."  (Matthew 5:14-16)

On the nights of the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections, the hearts of those who know and love God were sickened.  For the body of Christ in America, I would be willing to say that, the general consensus of those two elections could be summed up thusly, "The hour we have feared has now come upon us."
For the first time in our nation's history, the majority of the American people have elected a person who, by most indicators, boldly stands for what God stands against.  However, as deceptive as this president's campaigns and terms have been, we cannot allow ourselves, even by our own righteous indignation, to be disqualified from helping those whose lives have been, and are being, terribly hurt by this administration’s assault on the very people that they were sworn to serve and protect.  It's our time to shine the Light of Christ!
For those who hunger for God, who uphold righteousness, who cast their votes for the closest to godly candidates, who are in favor of raising the standard of what's right for the American people, they will be blessed.  For those who have allowed their hearts to become hardened toward God and His Word and His ways, they will suffer loss.  As the moral state of our nation erodes, I believe there will be countless new opportunities arise for those who WANT God to rise up FOR God.  While those who continue in righteousness will be provided for in miraculous ways, countless thousands of those who voted for candidates who stand against God and His Laws will increasingly suffer.  It is for this reason that we must not allow bitterness and anger to enter our hearts toward those who vote for those who stand against God and His Ways.  Allowing bitterness and anger into our hearts would disqualify us from participating in this historic opportunity to reach them for Christ.
This is not a time for discouragement or bitter, angry words.  You see, it is impossible for God to be overtaken or over thrown in any way!  Let the miraculous testimonies of God's greatness be in our lives and on our lips!  Rejoice and be exceedingly happy because now is our time to shine!  Never forget, when sin abounds, God's grace does MUCH MORE abound!
"Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.  For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.  Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound.  But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."  (Romans 5:18-21; with emphasis added)
When darkness increases around us, the light that is within us will shine brighter and brighter.  But we must walk humbly with God.  "And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.  The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light."  (Romans 13:11-12)
The final pruning has begun, and we have been given the wake-up call.  Will the Lord return and find us sleeping in the night, or will He come and find us watching and ready?  If we are to be found ready, then let us "cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light."  (Romans 13:12)  The works of darkness characterize those who are not walking with God, because the works of Light are performed by those who have put on the Armor of Light.  Jesus is that Light and it is His Armor we are supposed to be wearing!
Remember, too, that since it is His Armor, we can only use it effectively through the Spirit.  We can never succeed on our own merit or by our own efforts.  God wants us to succeed, and He waits for us to enter into His presence with singing.  Before that can occur, we need to honestly assess our spiritual condition.  We cannot shine the glorious Light, if our hearts are cluttered with sin, including carrying with us the cares of this life.
"Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God."  (Hebrews 12:1-2)
The Great Cloud of Witnesses in Heaven is watching as we run the race of faith - the Greatest Race of all.  Our Lord will never leave us nor forsake us.  So, as we keep our eyes on Him -the Author and Finisher of our faith- let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that God has set before us.  For now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.  The moment when we see our Savior face to face is drawing ever-near.
"Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."  (2 Peter 1:10-11)
Do you like the sound of those words?  Do you desire an abundant entrance "into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ"?  You should, and the Lord desires it for you as well, because this is the eternal election.  So give diligence to make your calling and election sure, and in the Apostle Peter's words "do these things" which he described as follows...
"According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity."  (2 Peter 1:3-7)
God, by His Divine Power, has given us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.  We receive these through the Knowledge of Jesus Christ.  Also, through Jesus we have received His "exceeding great and precious promises".  And, by the fulfillment of these promises, we partake of the Divine Nature, escaping the corruption that is in the world through lust.
Did you catch what I just said?  Think on these things again, and again, and again… continually.  Through Jesus we are made partakers of the Divine Nature!  How easy it is to get caught up in the affairs of this life, or to be overwhelmed by any number of circumstances.  God says, rise above them all through the power of Jesus Christ!  Give all diligence in adding virtue (praiseworthy conduct) to your faith; "and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity."  (2 Peter 1:7)
What is “charity” and why is it essential for shining the light of Christ in the world?  I have heard it said that charity is just another word for “love”.  Though it is a kind of love, the meaning of what we know “love” to be is nowhere near on the same level with “charity”.  In order to understand "charity", we must first get understanding of the "love" that GOD has for His Children that is enormous beyond our comprehension, at this point.  There is only one way to get this understanding.  And that is by diligently seeking God, Himself.  Scripture tells us that God is a Rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.  So, what exactly is the "reward" for seeking Him?  It is God, Himself!  The Scripture also says that He, God, is our exceeding great Reward.  It is only when we seek, or pursue, God, with our whole heart, that we will be able to make our way into "One-ness" with God, as Jesus prayed in the garden.  We find in Psalm 100:4 the KEY for making our way into that "one-ness" with God.  The verse explains how we must enter His Gates with thanksgiving and His Courts with praise, making *Gratitude to God* the prerequisite for discovering Who He IS, thereby discovering who we are, as His children.  The "one-ness" we seek is the natural result of our coming to the place of knowing Him, and seeing through His eyes the enormity of His Love for us.  By entering "IN-to" the place of "one-ness", by way of gratitude for Him as Our Father, we then can see the enormity of His Love that comes as the result of seeing through His eyes, from our intimate position "IN Him".  Having and giving gratitude to God, for Who He IS more than for what He DOES, is e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g here because it begins the process of moving to be "IN Him” or in "one-ness" with Him. It is from that place of being "IN Him", being ever-grateful for Who He IS, that we are naturally positioned to see ourselves, as only He see us, through His eyes.
When we, for the first time, see ourself the way God sees us, we catch the life-changing glimpse of the enormity of God's Love for each and every one of the His people, each as individuals, as He created us.  Once we have seen ourself in the unique way as only can be seen through the eyes of God, the way we see God, ourselves, and others causes a total paradigm shift in the way that we had always perceived God, ourselves, and others before that moment in time.  The kind of love that we see, with our own eyes, flowing out of God, literally changes us IN AN INSTANT.  The enormity of God's Love toward us, or "Charity", is such that the human mind is not wired to perceive it, therefore, until that exact moment, we could never have even imagined it!  I refer to that ultimate love God has as a "silken tsunami".  Your eyes could never be opened, even remotely, to anything more enormous than that LOVE you finally now see; God's LOVE for you, and God's LOVE for others. 
Let me explain this in a different way.  Until you have experienced the unfathomable degree by which God loves and celebrates you, as an individual, you cannot begin to understand the degree by which He loves and celebrates others.  By the Person of The Holy Spirit, we are able to go beyond the limitations of our human understanding.  Without the Person of The Holy Spirit, we are cut off from God.  It is only when The Holy Spirit provides us the ability to see God that we are able to be exposed to the enormity of God, Himself, and experience being overwhelmed by the love that God has for you.  Once His Love has overwhelmed you, then you become able to consider how overwhelming His Love also is for other individuals. 
The Person of The Holy Spirit reveals to what is incomparable, and nearly overwhelming, to anything you had ever been taught about Him before.  Only when we behold with our own eyes, by the Person of The Holy Spirit leading us to God, can we see His Love for us, as an individual.  Once we have seen His Love for us, the complacency that we had developed toward others becomes utterly vaporized.  The unfathomably extreme joy, that we now have seen for ourselves, is what we now can identify, and look for, as the extreme love God holds for every other individual as well.  That is the primary symptom of the paradigm shift I mentioned above.  The term you have heard from many in the church that identifies the moment, as we just described, is “being born again”.
It is when we have personally witnessed the immensity of the type of "love" that God has for His Children that we come to understand that this “love” is much more powerful than what we have known love as human beings to be.  The name used to describe this form of love that God has for His Children is “charity”.
Now, when we couple “charity” with faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance (self-control), patience, godliness, brotherly kindness abounding in our heart, then "the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God" will SHINE unto those around us.  (see 2 Corinthians 4:4)  Then we will have the ability to play the part God has for us to play in these last days before Christ Jesus returns.  Only by “charity” (the love of God) flowing through us, are we going to be able to win the hearts and minds of those who have been swept away in the tide of Godlessness - the reason people vote for candidates who do not live according to God’s Word or His Ways.
"For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."  (2 Corinthians 4:6)  Remember always that "we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us."  (2 Corinthians 4:7)  It's our time to shine the Light of Christ!
Thank you for reading this blog message that flows from our heart's passion for God, His written and spoken Word, and His People.  We pray that something we share fans the flame in your heart to "reach for God" in greater ways than ever.
To Show GOD BIG in a World that Sees Him small…  sums up the reason the two of us, Keith and Brenda, stepped out in faith to focus on reaching the lost and strengthening believers everywhere, through Toward The Mark, Inc.  Our prayer, along with the entire team of this ministry, is that you will be encouraged and edified by the Secrets from God's Word that we share through Keith’s written and recorded accounts. The complete collection of original podcasts, music, Blogs, books, CDs, and other resources of Toward The Mark, Inc. are made possible by the prayer and financial contributions of the TTM Support Family.  We'd like to welcome you on-board TODAY!

Mail tax-deductible check donations to Toward The Mark, Inc., P.O. Box 1152, Yorktown, VA 23692-1152.

We INVITE You to...  check out the other Scripture-based tools to help as “We Press Toward the Mark…” of becoming "one" with our Heavenly Father:

Die Empty--Discover What God Wired You To Do

Jesus said, “Strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.”  (Matthew 7:14)
The Path of Life is exceedingly difficult to find and, unless we are on the Path of Life, we cannot fulfill God’s purpose for us." - Keith

Have you ever wondered why you were put on the Earth? If you have, then you are certainly not alone.  Millions of people have asked that very same question. Sadly, the vast majority have never found the answer, and instead have sought purpose and fulfillment in all the wrong ways, finding only confusion and hopelessness.  Why is this so?
The majority of individuals today are not taught that they were designed by God for a unique, important role that they, alone, can fulfill in God's great plan. Indeed, much sadness, frustration, confusion, depression, and all manner of discontentment have been wrought in the lives of individuals who have sought purpose and fulfillment that they can never find in jobs, accomplishments, or any other activity.
When we have not seen the vision of what God has wired us to do, then we will indeed perish.  What do I mean by this?  When we do not function in our God-given calling, we can never truly be fulfilled.  This leads to the reason our prisons are overloaded, prescription drug use for depression and anxiety sky-rocketing, and, as is in our country today, unfulfilled people searching for a false sense of fulfillment that end up indebted to loan companies and agents.  When people are not functioning in the fulfilling things God set in their lives, they search for what they can only receive in God in things that lead to exorbitant debt from bigger houses they can't afford, nicer cars than they need, exotic appliances, and other things that cannot replace the satisfaction and fulfillment of truly being in the will of God.
So, see, it is true that without a vision of God's plan and purpose for your life, you will most certainly be destroyed, and perish.  Because the vast majority of people today have never experienced the fulfillment that comes with walking in God's plan for their lives, they stumble into places where they believe they will fall into the happiness they seek, everywhere but at the feet of God.  What satan does is set out to get us on a course that leads us into bondage... to jobs we don't like, to a need for finances, and to some self-destructive spiral that leads us to destruction.  God created each individual person to do something great, unique, and fulfilling in their lives.

In my 30+ years of ministry I have answered countless questions and, perhaps, the most often asked question is, "How do I know what God has called me to do?" Before I share with you the answer to that question, I need to make a point very clear.  Only God knows what He has wired you to do.  This may come as a surprise to you, but, not even your pastor knows what God has wired you to do.  So, before we get started, you need to know that only the maker of a thing truly knows what he made the thing to do.  The same is true of us as being made, or created, by our Maker.  So, if you want to know truly what you were made to do when you were put here on this earth, you need to ask your Maker.  Having said that, you need to know that, despite how we may feel about ourselves at times, God has never made a mistake.  As I have told countless people who question their existence, "If you're here on this earth, that means that God spent time fashioning you, and wiring you, to fulfill a certain existence."  God is the God of Purpose, and everything and everybody He has created, He specifically designed and created to fulfill a vital part in His very specific, over-all plan of His Creation.
Now, the question is, "How do I discover what God has wired me to do?"  First off, let's look at the word "discover."  The word "discover" is opposite of the word "cover."  The word "cover" means "to conceal" a thing, where the word "discover" means "to UNcover, or to reveal" a thing.  To do this, God has given us a way to begin uncovering, or to begin revealing, what He has wired us to do.  Though satan and his minions love to take the simple things and make them complicated, what I am about to ask you may sound almost too simple, or too easy.  After all, shouldn't discovering what God wired us to do take years of intense prayer and fasting, and, well, ... all that?!  The fact of the matter is, no it doesn't.  And, to let you know just how easy God makes it for us to begin to discover, and walk in, what He wired us to do, I ask you a few questions.
What do you like doing?  Again, contrary to what satan would have you believe, it's all really that simple.  You see, God will never call you to do what you do NOT like doing.  Why?  Because, if you don't like what you do, and enjoy what you do, you will never be passionate about what you do.  Why is being passionate so important?  Because God is passionate.  God is fun.  And, if you are not enjoying and fulfilled in what you are doing, you will not be able to reflect the LIFE of God in your work.  You see, God did not give us work for pay.  He gave us work for fulfillment, and joy.  Ask yourself the question, "When was the last time I wanted to be somebody that hated what they do for work?"  Being a Christian, as the majority of the population claim to be, your being fulfilled is a prerequisite for properly representing the Nature of Christ to those who do not know Him.
What did you dream about becoming when you were just a child?  For some, this may take a bit more concentration than it does for others.  Our advice is to get alone with God, wherever it is you might call your "prayer closet."  Make sure that place has no distractions.  It needs to be well-lit, because this phase of your discovering what God has wired you to do requires that you read the Scriptures.  The Scriptures, God's written Word, is where we go to meet with the Person of the Holy Spirit Who tutors us in the things of God, including things like uncovering the part that God has wired us to fulfill with Him.  So, concerning this, n-o-w answer the question, "What did you dream about, and s-e-e yourself doing when you were a child?"  You see, when God gives you a "vision", especially as a young child, what He is in effect doing is showing you what He intends you to pursue.  So, if we have s-e-e-n what we like to do, then all we have to do is go toward that thing we s-e-e. Doing something is what gives you the "vision" to go toward that thing.  In essence, what God does is show us the end, or the fulfillment of what He has wired us to do, then He backs us up and starts us toward the fulfillment of what he showed us.  Are you familiar with the Scripture about how, without a vision, people perish?  This verse holds no truer than where God's calling, His vision for our life, is concerned.  By showing us, early on, what He has wired us to do, He is helping to ensure that we stay on course toward the fulfillment of His vision.  How does this make that sure?  If we get discourage along the way, all we have to do is look again at, and refocus on, what He showed us in the beginning, which will take us back to the vision of the end of what He showed us.
When I was a child, I was passionate about football, music, and boats.  Though these may not sound like what you might consider as legitimate opportunities for "ministry",  that's exactly what they were, and are to this day.  Because God had wired me to pursue them, I was passionate about these 3 things that started as my childhood dreams, and they became a part of my every-day pursuits and, naturally led me to excel in my life in these different fields.  Then, as I grew more skillful in each of these areas of my life, they also naturally brought me joy.  It was the joy that was obvious to others who saw me while I participated in these things that then, naturally, afforded me favor with countless people over the years who I was able to lead to Christ, many of whom I can guarantee would never grace the doors of a church.  Having said that, it's crucial to note that you do not allow yourself to fall in to satan's trap of trying to convince Christians that "real ministry only takes place inside the 4 walls of the church building."  The church and its leadership, biblically speaking, is to be a gift to us from God to teach us how to go outside the 4 walls of the church and effectively affect the lost, the hurting, the poor, the hungry, the naked, the homeless, and the like with the love and compassion of Jesus Christ.  This leads us to the next question.
What is that “something” deep in your heart that you have always wanted to do but have yet to accomplish? Perhaps you have actually started working on it, but for whatever reason, it has fallen to the bottom of your priority list.
What is your passion? You know what I am talking about. What is that God-given vision that burns in your heart so hot that, it is what you think about when you go to bed at night and it is what is on your mind when you wake up in the morning? It is that thing that is even more real to you than the life you are living. So much so, that when you are at school or on your job, it is all you seem to think about and work towards, often making your studies or work-related assignments a bit of a mental tug of war. That, my friend, is how God lets us know what He has put us on this Earth to do.
How do you get started doing what you believe is God’s call for your life? The way I did it was this: I prayed and asked God to lead me to someone that was truly anointed at doing what I felt God was calling me to do. I then went to that person and asked them if they would show me the ropes, so to speak. In my case, I wanted to start my own outreach ministry. So, I committed to serving a pastor who was truly called by God to pastor His people. I then sat under his teaching and did whatever he needed me to do for a number of years.
Perhaps God has called you to start a Christian bookstore. The same principle applies: the best way to learn the business would be to work in an established bookstore until you have gathered enough information from your employer or managers to start your own store.
I know several guys who believed that God had called them to open an automotive repair shop. That was their ministry. They worked for several years at an established garage until such time as they felt ready to start their own. That is how it is done.
We encourage you, whatever that “something” is that has been burning in your heart, ignore it no longer! Get with God and do whatever it takes to get it “out there” so that it can be doing what God intended for it to do: Glorify His name and fulfill your deepest longings!
I once had a very sobering revelation of what it would be like to stand before the loving Almighty God without having completed the things that He had put me here on Earth to do. All I can say is, it crushed my heart! There I was, standing before God, Love Himself, with nothing to lay at His feet. I can remember being overwhelmed with grief, not a fear of being yelled at by Him, but a deep sorrow the likes of which I had never known: wishing that I could have one more chance to go back and bring forth the things that He had placed in me. I can tell you right now, that is not going to happen to me, and I encourage you with all of my strength to not let it happen to you either! It is time you stop procrastinating and get it done!
Get the things that God has placed in your heart out of you and into the hands and hearts of others who need what He has so richly deposited in your life.
For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.(James 2:26)
Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.(2 Peter 1:10-11)
From this time forth we encourage you to make it your life’s passion to pursue ALL of what you were wired by God to be and to do so, when your life is finished, you DIE EMPTY.

THANK YOU for following the Blog of TTM, Inc. and God bless you,
We INVITE YOU to...  take advantage of our other Scripture-based tools to help as “We Press Toward the Mark…” of becoming "one" with our Heavenly Father:

Keith and Brenda "Between The Lines" TTM Podcast on Libsyn

*Every gift you send helps, and we thank you for it!
Mail tax-deductible gift checks made out to "Toward The Mark, Inc.", P.O. Box 1152, Yorktown, VA 23692-1152.

Toward the Mark, Inc. © 2005 - 2019 | Privacy Policy and Terms of Use apply |
(757)251-2440 | TowardTheMark.com | Keith@TowardTheMark.com.

Wednesday, January 28

GOD HAS A DREAM That We CELEBRATE Each Other's Unique Differences

Having this long weekend to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day with our families this mid-January Monday, we could think of no better time than now to shine God's liberating Light of Truth on an area that satan has gone all-but unchallenged on. Due to a lack of knowledge of God's Word by most people, the devil has been successful at deceiving countless millions of men and women away from the joy of discovering and walking in the purpose for which God created each of us. God's Word teaches us that, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to Me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children." (Hosea 4:6)

"As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction."  (2 Peter 3:16)
A dear friend once said something in a message that taught everyone listening a valuable principle. He said, "If you don't know the purpose of a thing, all you can do is abuse (ABnormally-USE) it."  That same law applies especially where human beings are concerned.  If we do not know the purpose for people and why God has created so many different skin colors, ethnic groups, etc., all we can do is abuse one another.  Until we have pursued, with all diligence, God's written Word, to the point that we can hear His spoken Word -The Person of The Holy Spirit showing us personally- on why God does all that He does the way He does, my advice is do not say a word.  The purpose for a thing can only be found in the mind of the maker of that thing.  Where we individual human beings (being the "thing" referred to) are concerned, the purpose for each one of us, as individuals, can only be found in the mind of God, our Creator and our Maker.  So, "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. "  (Matthew 6:33)
Remember this, something I have learned, "People tend to criticize the harshest the things and the people they understand the least."  Why does this happen?  In short, it is a symptom of being afraid of what is unknown.  However, this kind of fear is far worse that your run-of-the-mill fear of the dark.  The fear that I speak of here are wicked spirits that are deployed for the purpose of working to lure us into the trap of casting false judgment against others - a sin that carries with it a deadly price.  Why do they work so intently at this?  Our enemies (satan and his minions) know, far better than most Christians do, that a family must first be unified before they can function effectively.  So, you see, if the enemies can tempt us into condemning ourselves by casting false judgment, they know they can knock out two birds with one stone (so to speak).  By their deceiving us into using our own tongues to condemn ourselves, one "bird" they can knock out is our approval of and favor for one another.  By our allowing ourselves to be used by the enemy, the second "bird" they can knock out at the same time is the unity within God's Family.
Jesus warns us of the price of falling into that trap.  He said, "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again."  (Luke 6:37-38)  Stop for just a moment and listen to what Jesus is gifting us with here.  Jesus, knowing how satan will use our own lack of understanding of the way God does things concerning the beauty that is His diverse Creation, is revealing to us how beloved everyone is to God and to the fulfillment of His Dream.  Simply put, when we condemn others, we are insulting God, His beloved Children, and the dream He carries in His Heart.  Here again, we find that our lack of understanding God and the reason and the way He does what He does provides satan and his minions with what they need to lure us into condemning ourselves with our own tongues.
If we are going to accurately represent God, we must know Him and His Dream, and work WITH Him to see His Dream fulfilled.  In order to do this, we MUST know that God is the Consummate Family Man!  God was Father way before there were dads on earth.  Everything God does is because of, and for, His children - *all* of His children!  Period.  Let's talk about the Bible for a minute.  Among so many other brilliant things God gave us, the Holy Scriptures are given to us for the purpose of leading us into the unfathomably loving and waiting arms of God.  My wife, Brenda, likes when I put it this way, "From the beginning of the second chapter of Genesis, all the way through to the very last period at the end of Revelation, in short, the Bible is God devising means to get us back around His 'supper table' (you understand that term best if you're from the south)."
You see, everything God has created began with the very first number that He formulated and mathematically arranged, then set into place as the base code of the very first molecule, or the "foundation molecule" for all of creation.  For each molecule to follow, God made changes to one or more digits of the strand(s) of mathematical code, formulating a series of numbers within each strand, for the ultimate purpose of designing everything He ever wants to, never creating any two objects alike.  So, why would God go to such unfathomable lengths to ensure that every single thing He creates is so different?  Because the brilliance in all of His entire Creation is in the fact that He was, and is, able to create everything, not just different but, entirely different because of the way each and every one of His molecules is coded mathematically.  This is what God meant when He said, "Let us make man in Our Image, after Our Likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."  (Genesis 1:26)
What did God mean when He said "Let us make man in our likeness and in our image"?  In part, He was saying that He wanted to create each of us as individuals as well as members of various ethnic groups, with endless potential.  For example, Paul writes, "I  can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."  (Philippians 4:13)  To help explain the multiple facets of God, of Whose Image we are created, I would like to share a small part of a brother's account where he prayed one night, before he died, and asked Jesus if he could meet Him in person.  (Please note, I cannot confirm or deny the authenticity of this account.)  Something that this brother said happened toward the end of his encounter, I believe, will provide a good visual for the point that I am making concerning the endless potential of God.  Not long after the brother had made his request, he said that he was taken up into Heaven in the night.  He said that he was greeted at the gate by Father Abraham.  He said that Father Abraham, from the start, called him by his first name and led him through various parts of Heaven showing him things that he explained as being so beautiful that he could not explain their beauty in words.  After Father Abraham had taken the fellow to meet Jesus, Who he said was mighty beyond all comprehension, he said that Father Abraham wanted to take him to see one more thing.  He went on to describe a place Father Abraham then took him to where he saw and heard enormous sounds of lightning and thunder, more massive sounds than he could ever explain.  He said that he asked Father Abraham where they were at that time.  Father Abraham replied, "This is God's Throne."  The fellow said that he was frozen in awe!  He then said that, as he was taking it all in, he saw countless angels circling over God's throne nonstop.  The fellow said he then turned to Father Abraham and asked, "Father Abraham, what would cause all of those angels to continually fly around God's Throne without ever stopping to rest?"  Father Abraham replied, "Each time the angels fly a circle around God's throne, they see a facet of God that they had not seen before, and it compels them around again to see yet another facet of God that they had never seen."
Our difference is proof positive that we are created in God's Image.  The interesting thing here is, if we were to take two people of the same race and disassemble their physical bodies down to their base foundation molecule, we would find that the differences between the two same-race individuals is just as great as the difference between two individuals of two different races and/or skin colors.  Though, outwardly, we may *appear* to be the same, we most certainly are not the same.  Why?  Because we are created in God's Image, which is multi-faceted.
One evening, as I was enjoying time in fellowship with the Person of The Holy Spirit, He showed me, from a distance, the most beautiful painting or portrait that I had ever seen of Jesus Christ.  As I looked at the painting, I noticed that the distance was shrinking between the place where I sat and the painting.  The closer to me the portrait became, the clearer I could see the portrait, and I began to see that it was not painted with natural human hands.  All of a sudden, the Person of The Holy Spirit imparted to me that this most glorious portrait was not a portrait at all.  It was a tapestry made of countless threads or fibers, all of them woven together to become more beautiful than anything we have ever seen on earth!  Each of the countless threads represented an ethnic group and skin color.  That tapestry was like nothing I had ever seen; it was literally breathtaking!
As my eyes were taking in that "not-of-this-world" beauty, knowledge was imparted to me by The Person of The Holy Spirit.  Every single thread in the completely glorious tapestry represented the gloriously beautiful differences God created in each and every one of us, His Children.  It was then that I realized what it was that I was looking at.  What I was seeing was nothing short of stunning... it was God's Family Portrait!

"If each and every one of us does not play such a crucial role in the fulfillment of God's Dream, then why is satan spending so much of his time and effort trying to keep us divided?"
THANK YOU for following Pressin'IN Blog of TowardTheMark.
God bless you,

take advantage of these  Scripture-based resources from Toward The Mark as well:

Keith and Brenda Shealy's "Between The Lines" Podcast on Libsyn

CLICK HERE to make a secure, tax-deductible contribution to help us
Every gift you send helps, and we thank you for it!
*Mail tax-deductible check donations made out to:
Toward The Mark, Inc., P.O. Box 1152, Yorktown, VA 23692-1152.

Toward the Mark, Inc. © 2005 - 2018 | Privacy Policy and Terms of Use apply |
 Visit TowardTheMark.com website |  Connect with TowardTheMark on e-mail.