THE NEW LIFE SERIES :: BE THANKFUL

AT RHW WE PUBLISH A NEW COLUMN EACH FRIDAY. WE’RE GOING THROUGH FOUR SPECIFIC STUDIES WITH EACH SERIES BEING PUBLISHED ON A DESIGNATED WEEK OF THE MONTH.

In THE NEW LIFE series we’re studying one of my favorite chapters in the Bible: Colossians 3:1-17. As you will see this is a rich chapter full of valuable life transforming lessons. Join me on the third Friday of each month in 2020 for this in-depth Bible study with real world applications.

And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.~ Colossians 3:15

In today’s verse Paul encourages us to let God’s peace rule our hearts. Because we are members of the body of Christ we are called to live in peace. And then should always be thankful.

Umpire of Peace

The word rule in this scripture comes from the language of athletics and refers to an umpire or referee. Our hearts are often the center of conflicting feelings and emotions–hopes and fears, love and jealousy. Paul is telling us to let the umpire of peace choose between the conflicting elements. Which choice will bring peace to our soul or our relationships?

Life of Peace

Having received Christ as our Savior we are now members of His mystical body, the Church. And as such we are called to live peaceful lives. Lives that are peaceful are free from anxiety, fear or worry.

Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart. And God’s peace, which is far beyond human understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 4:6-7

With the peace of Christ ruling our hearts we will truly able to be thankful. Here are three things we should all be thankful for:

  • God has chosen us. We should be so thankful that God has chosen us to be a part of His forever family.

You are the people of God; He loved you and chose you for His own. ~ Colossians 3:12

  • God’s gift of Christ. We should be forever thankful for the gift of Christ’s sacrifice which allows us to have relationship with our heavenly Father.

Praise God for his astonishing gift, which is far too great for words! ~ 2 Corinthians 9:15

  • God’s gift of life. We should be thankful for all the things we’ve been given: God’s Word, air, food, water, shelter, sun, rain, family, friends, flowers, dogs, ice cream… for all things!

And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Ephesians 5:20

 Join me in a worship of gratefulness with this awesome song  by  Elevation Worship

Elevation

THE NEW LIFE :: PUT ON LOVE

AT RHW WE PUBLISH A NEW COLUMN EACH FRIDAY. WE’RE GOING THROUGH FOUR SPECIFIC STUDIES WITH EACH SERIES BEING PUBLISHED ON A DESIGNATED WEEK OF THE MONTH.

In THE NEW LIFE series we’re studying one of my favorite chapters in the Bible: Colossians 3:1-17. As you will see this is a rich chapter full of valuable life transforming lessons. Join me on the third Friday of each month in 2020 for this in-depth Bible study with real world applications.

And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. ~ Colossians 3:14

For us to put on love and continually walk in love we must stay close to the only true source of love, God. As we do, the love we receive from God will be extended to those around us.

Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength. The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these.” ~ Mark 12:29-31

We are unable to love ourselves or others unless we first love God. And that love for God must be full and complete. Scripture calls for us to love God with ALL our heart, all our mind and all our strength. Unless we surrender our whole self to God as a sacrifice of love we cannot love anyone else.

Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. ~ 1 John 4:7-8

Now more than ever people need to know they are loved, cared for, valued and accepted. And the world can’t give us this. In fact when we look around we see the exact opposite every day. Many are completely unaware of God’s love. They imagine God as vague being who wants to punish the world. But God loves the world so much that He sent Jesus to show us that love in human form.

Love is kind and patient,
never jealous, boastful,
proud, or rude.
Love isn’t selfish
or quick tempered.
It doesn’t keep a record
of wrongs that others do.
Love rejoices in the truth,
but not in evil.
Love is always supportive,
loyal, hopeful,
and trusting.

                            1 Corinthians 13:4-7

As we continue to walk with God we will exhibit all the characteristics listed above–the characteristics of God that are shown to us in the life of Christ. Shake off our old worldly habits of thinking and reacting. Renew your mind with God’s word… Walk in forgiveness. Live as a person who has put on love!

Put on Love with this beautiful song by Brandon and Rebekah Fox.

THE NEW LIFE :: BELOVED OF GOD

AT RHW WE PUBLISH A NEW COLUMN EACH FRIDAY. WE’RE GOING THROUGH FOUR SPECIFIC STUDIES WITH EACH SERIES BEING PUBLISHED ON A DESIGNATED WEEK OF THE MONTH.

In THE NEW LIFE series we’re studying one of my favorite chapters in the Bible: Colossians 3:1-17. As you will see this is a rich chapter full of valuable life transforming lessons. Join me on the third Friday of each month in 2020 for this in-depth Bible study with real world applications.

Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. ~ Colossians 3:12-13

As God’s chosen and beloved people we must live in a way that honors our individual value and what Christ has done for us. After all this new life wouldn’t be possible without Christ’s death and resurrection.

Loving Virtues

With our new life wardrobe we are clothed with the virtues of mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, given to us through Jesus Christ. Wearing these virtues ables us to bear other’s burdens and forgive their flaws. This allows opportunities to truly show the love of Christ in our everyday life.

Our lives are called to be a response to God’s self-giving love. Every good thing we do in this life — love, forgive, serve — is merely an echo of the love of God. ~ James Bryan Smith

Forgiven to Forgive

When we accept God’s forgiveness we too must be willing to forgive others.  With those who are difficult to forgive we may need to meditate on the fact that because Christ has forgiven me completely, I must in turn forgive.

It’s important to stress here forgiveness doesn’t require continuing a relationship with someone who is toxic to be around. At this point we must forgive them, pray for and love them through Christ from a distance.

Beloved Chosen

Sometimes it’s easy to love and forgive others but somehow we can’t do the same for ourselves. For whatever reason we feel unworthy or not good enough to be called God’s beloved. No matter what we believe about ourselves God’s love for us is unstoppable!

YOU ARE THE BELOVED OF GOD!

 

There is nothing in our present or future circumstances that can weaken his love. There is no power above us or beneath us—no power that could ever be found in the universe that can distance us from God’s passionate love, which is lavished upon us through our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One! ~ Romans 8:38-39

Take a few minutes and listen to this beautiful song by Jordan Feliz. Let the lyrics soak deep in your soul and realize how much God loves you!

THE NEW LIFE :: ONE IN CHRIST

AT RHW WE PUBLISH A NEW COLUMN EACH FRIDAY. WE’RE GOING THROUGH FOUR SPECIFIC STUDIES WITH EACH SERIES BEING PUBLISHED ON A DESIGNATED WEEK OF THE MONTH.

In THE NEW LIFE series we’re studying one of my favorite chapters in the Bible: Colossians 3:1-17. As you will see in the coming months, this is a rich chapter full of valuable life transforming lessons. Join me on the third Friday of each month in 2020 for this in-depth Bible study with real world applications.

In this new creation life, your nationality makes no difference, or your ethnicity, education, or economic status—they matter nothing. For it is Christ that means everything as he lives in every one of us! ~ Colossians 3:11

Much like our world today, in Paul’s day there were very clear lines drawn that separated people on the basis of political ideas, gender race, religion, education and social class.

People are often fearful of those who are different and rarely cross these deep dividing lines. But when we become followers of Christ that all changes. We now share a bond that removes the cause for separation.

Without Christ the world can never arrive at such oneness. It took the incarnation, death and resurrection of Jesus to make it possible.

With Christ living in each of those who have accepted Him we are able to see each other beyond the things that separated us before.

In Christ we are all one. Regardless of our outer differences, our inner sameness gives us unity inner diversity, which is just as God designed us to be. ~ James Bryan Smith

Please join me in a favorite classic hymn from my youth as we contemplate the Oneness of Christ throughout the world.

 

favorite classic hymn

THE NEW LIFE :: HEAVEN’S PRIORITIES

At RHW we publish a new column each Friday. We’re going through four specific studies with each series being published on a designated week of the month.

In THE NEW LIFE series we’re studying one of my favorite chapters in the Bible: Colossians 3:1-17. As you will see in the coming months, this is a rich chapter full of valuable life transforming lessons. Join me on the third Friday of each month in 2020 for this in-depth Bible study with real world application.

Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. ~ Colossians 1:1 (NLT)

 

Since you have been raised to new life with Christ,…

In our first verse Paul is encouraging believers to realize that Jesus wasn’t the only one who was raised from the dead. As believers in Jesus Christ we’ve all been raised to a new life with Christ. From God’s perspective every believer– past, present or future –is considered raised with Christ. Because we’ve been resurrected out of our walking-dead state we can live new lives of freedom with God in Christ.

…set your sights on the realities of heaven,…

Paul goes on to tell us that because we’ve been raised from the dead with Christ our focus should not be on earthly things. Setting our hearts and minds on the realities of heaven we’ll strive to walk out these priorities in daily life. As we begin to see life from heaven’s point of view we’ll naturally pursue a deeper knowledge of Christ and everything that’s involved in living for Him and with Him.

“Fix your thoughts on what is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.” ~ Philippians 4:8-9 (NLT)

…where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand.

One of the most important heavenly realities we must see, truly foundational to our new life, is that we must recognize that Jesus Christ is seated next to His Father in heaven. In this place of honor and authority Jesus makes intercession for us to the Father. Unless we recognize the truth of Christ’s authority in heaven and on earth, He won’t have a place of authority in our lives either.

To develop our new life and actively pursue heaven’s priorities requires discipline. Here are some key disciplines to apply to your life:

      • * Discipline your heart by memorizing Scripture.

        * Discipline your mind by rejecting anything not from God.

        * Discipline your relationships with healthy fellowship.

What does this new life look like? How are we supposed to live? Check back on the third Friday next month as we continue our study of Colossians 3 and The New Life.

Let’s enthrone King Jesus with our highest praises singing this powerful song by Jeremy Riddle and Bethel Music.