"That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; and to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God." (Ephesians 3:17-19)
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." (John 1:12-13)
"And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them." (John 17:26)
Cling To Christ
What would he say if he could speak to me now?
Would he speak of things, or places, or anything “nice?”
Or would he look at me honestly, solemnly
And with heartfelt pleading, tell me to cling to Christ
Would he say that what he thought mattered
Was nothing, that it didn’t matter at all?
The money, the travel, the chasing, the striving
That he was never truly satisfied with life in the Fall?
Would he tell me there is no life outside of Christ?
That although his plans gained him earthly wealth
And he had everything a man could possibly want
Yet in the midst of it all he had lost himself?
When I asked the unanswered question of his life
In a subtle whisper I heard him say, “Cling to Christ!
"His love is overwhelming, He proved it on the Cross
What I counted gain on earth, I now count it all as loss"
"He is everything, stay close, don't ever let Him go
When He calls your name; come, abide, forever stay
Let nothing of this world dissuade you from His arms
For He alone is the only Truth, the only Life, and the only Way..."
My brother’s death is causing me to cling to Christ in ways that I haven’t before. It is speaking to me of all the things I have been clinging to that are superficial and superfluous. It is bringing life through the working of God in the midst of my grief and unknown answers. It is causing me to seek and pray and believe for those I know who do not know Christ, or who have grown cold toward Him. My brother’s death has been one of the hardest things I have ever had to walk through, yet it has also been one of the dearest evidences of the closeness of Christ, and the sweetness of God’s love toward me…
At the end of his life there was much evidence that he had not been trusting Christ, that he had been trusting in himself and his abilities, his choices, his decisions. He let me pray with him, wanted me to pray with him as he lay there in a hospital ICU; for healing, for strength, for life…but I didn’t even think to ask or pray with him about where he stood with Christ…I really didn’t think he was going to die, and he didn’t either. I thought we would have more time…
People don’t want to hear it but maybe we need to: we are sinners; you are a sinner, I am a sinner. We miss the mark, we fall short, and left to our own devices without Christ Jesus we are despicable, unholy, filthy wretches—and that is on our best day. On our worst day we are capable of atrocities and horror beyond our comprehension. Look at the world we live in and you know that what I am saying is true. And there is only one thing that will fix it, rather only one name under heaven by which we can be saved—Jesus Christ. A social justice movement won’t do it, being more moral won’t do it, diversity won’t do it, equity won’t do it, being who you ‘feel’ you are won’t do it, various addictions won’t do it, more money won’t do it, more pleasure won’t do it…we must be born again, made alive by the Spirit of the Almighty God who loved us so much that he gave His only Son to save us.
Our first birth does not have the power to save us, because in our first birth we were all born in sin…(Psalm 51:5), it is only through our second birth, in our being born again, born from above that we can really know Life. John 3:5-7, “Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” “Born” in the Greek means ‘regenerated, made alive’, and “again” in the Greek means ‘from above.’ So to be born again is to be made alive, regenerated from above.
And once we are born again, born of the Spirit, we have a new nature which then acts on our will to produce new actions. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold all things are become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17) And please hear me; this is completely an act of God by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. You cannot save yourself, and this is certainly not about you doing more good things than bad, it’s not about earning your way to heaven, it not about church attendance or acts of church service, it is not about saying a prayer one time and then living the rest of your life looking and acting just like the world---this is an act of God which results in transformation—a changed life. Listen to Ezekiel 36:25-27, this is God speaking; "Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness and from all your idols, will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.”
Have you been made alive, regenerated by the Spirit of God? Have you passed from death to Life? From darkness to Light? Has your life truly been transformed? If not, and you feel God drawing you to Himself; repent and believe. Turn from all your selfishness, your self-righteousness, your sin, your way, and run to the Lord Jesus Christ. Believe He died your death and took your punishment on the Cross, and that He has redeemed You to Himself by His incredible love and grace.
I come in the name of your precious Son, Jesus Christ. I pray that you would open the eyes of the blind, that you would open the ears of the deaf, that you would draw their hearts to Yours. I pray by Your Holy Spirit You would move in me, in them, in this world. I pray that Your will and Your purpose be done above all else, in all things, in every place. I pray that Your name is made great and Your glory is magnified.
You know, Oh Lord, You know…
Written by Anne Marie Hawke
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qUIET IN CHAOS
Quiet in Chaos is a blog about nothing, everything, and all things inbetween…it’s a space, an ellipsis, a deep pause. Life can be chaotic, and often needs more moments of quiet…So join me as I share and give through the written word, the place I find my Quiet in Chaos…