Sunday, May 31, 2015

Freedom Through Obedience to Christ in ARCM

Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the voice of the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the Word of the Lord,
He has rejected you as king."

(I Samuel 15: 29. NIV)

“Obedience invites Christ to show His 
incomparable strength
in our mortal weakness.”
(Beth Moore)

For you, brethren, have been called to liberty;
Only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh,
but through love serve one another.

(Galatians 5:13. NIV)

It is getting harder and harder for me to watch the news. I see the terrible atrocities committed by ISIS in the Middle East against the Christians and against those who still have not yet come to know Christ as their Savior. My heart breaks for the Christians and their families who are being slaughtered or persecuted; they did not deserve this kind of death. The only solace is that I know that those Christians who died are in Heaven. They now have complete freedom or liberty. For, when they accepted Christ as their Savior they received freedom from the law of sin and death. “For the law of the Spirit of life [which is] in Christ Jesus [the law of our new being] has freed me from the law of sin and of death.” – (Romans 8:2. Amplified Bible).  With Christ, they were freed from the condemnation of the law of sin, and they no longer walked according to the flesh, but according to the Holy Spirit. Now, though, they have not only been freed from the law of sin, but they have now been freed from eternal death as well.

I am sad, though, for the families of those who were killed and for their loved ones left behind who may still have to deal with certain physical death or the loss of loved ones. Moreover, if those left behind, who are still fighting for their lives, do not know Christ personally, they will not have the assurance of seeing their loved ones again someday. For, the Christians who were killed are now completely free and have gone home to be with our Heavenly Father. Unfortunately though, many people have died not knowing Christ and many more will die without knowing Him. My heart breaks for those who have died without knowing Christ personally, because they will now spend eternity in Hell. They will be locked up in misery forever.

… Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, ‘If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free.’ … They answered Him, … What do You mean by saying, ‘you will be set free’? Jesus answered them, ‘I assure you. Whoever commits and practices sin is slave of sin. Now a slave does not remain in a household permanently (forever). So if the Son liberates you [makes you free men], then you are really and unquestionably free.’” – (John 8: 31-36. Amplified Bible). In other words, those who believe in and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior will be free from the control that sin has on those who don’t know Christ as their Savior.

There is liberty in Salvation. Moreover, our freedom transcends these earthly bounds, and through our Salvation we will have eternal freedom as well. With the liberty of Salvation, our souls experience peace, joy and love in the here and now; however our souls also know about and look forward to the ultimate, peace, joy and love that we will receive in Heaven. For, someday we will spend a joyous, peaceful and loving eternity with Christ. In the meantime, we experience the liberty of an internal peace, joy and love that is hard to explain to those who are not “Saved.” In fact, our eternity started the moment that we were “Saved.” Consequently, I feel so sad for those who will never experience the true freedom that Salvation brings.

Another reason that it has become harder for me to watch the news is the progression of ISIS throughout the Middle East along with the promotion of fanatical Muslim beliefs throughout the world that lead to terroristic atrocities in many cities around the world. We may think that we are safe here in the United States, because there is an ocean between us and them, but all we have to do is remember 9/11. Moreover, ISIS recruits unhappy, lonely, and lost young people from America, the home of the free, into their evil beliefs and ways. This includes the recruitment of our young women as well.

Once our young women are recruited, they are brainwashed through videos and through other young people who attempt to offer them a reason for living. ISIS’ recruitment is easy, because Christians throughout our nation have failed to share Christ and His love with our young people. We have failed to offer our young women a reason for living and a purpose in life. We have failed to share Jesus, and we have failed to reach out to help them or to empower them to live a productive and fulfilling life for the Lord.

Why have Christian women failed to reach out and care about our young women? Well, we have often failed to obey the commands of Jesus and the Word of God. Although we are imbued with the Holy Spirit Who wants to guide us and show us how to be obedient to the Word of God, we often fail to listen to the Holy Spirit. Consequently, we fail in our obedience to living for Christ and fail in sharing the Word of God. Moreover, we have failed to reach out to young people to mentor them and help them find their purpose and reason for living. Instead, we have allowed the world and the evil within the world to shower them with false religions and false hopes. Both our young women and young men are also lost in a technological world that does not meet their spiritual needs. Consequently, they turn to the first thing that seems to make some sense, even if it is a false narrative.

Christians have been told, within the Word of God, to not only welcome the Word of God into our spirit, but let the Word take root in our hearts so that we can use the Word of God to help save the souls of the lost. In fact, James, the brother of Jesus said, “But be doers of the Word [obey the message, and not be merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth].  For if anyone only listens to the Word without obeying it and being a doer of it, he is like a man who looks carefully at his [own] natural face in a mirror; For he thoughtfully observes himself, and then goes off and promptly forgets what he was like.”  -- (James 1:22-24. Amplified Bible).  Sadly, many Christians fail to be doers of the Word. They are only listeners and so fail to take obedient action to live a Christ-like life for others to see and want. They listen to the Word, but instead of obeying it and doing it, they immediately forget what they are supposed to do or what they are supposed to look like as a Christian.

However, if we take the Word of God into our hearts and then obey the commands of God’s Word and the commands of Christ to share the Gospel message with others, we could reach many people for the Lord. We could reach those that are lost and in emotional pain. We could reach those young people who are searching for a reason to exist. We could share Christ with other women and mentor those young women in the Word of God and in other areas of their lives where they may need help. But if we stick close to home, close to our own desires and fail to obey Christ’s commands to reach out to share the Gospel message, or we simply fail to help other women through ARCM, then we are setting ourselves and future generations of young women up for deception from Satan. This deception comes from false teachers, false religions, and simply false beliefs that can lead to the usurpation of our personal freedoms.

In speaking about those who have Christ in their heart, the Apostle Peter said, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a dedicated nation, [God’s] own purchased, special people, that you may set forth the wonderful deeds and display the virtues and perfections of Him Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. … For it is God’s will and intention that by doing right [your good and honest lives] should silence (muzzle, gag) the ignorant charges and ill-informed, criticisms of foolish persons. Live as free people, [yet] without employing your freedom as a pretext for wickedness; but [live at all times] as servants of God.”  -- (I Peter 2: 9, 15-16. Amplified Bible).  Living as free people means that we live in such a way that others can see Christ in us. It means that we live in obedience to the will of God. It is God's will for us to love our neighbors as ourselves.

Let me ask you a question. If you are truly “Saved” and you truly love your neighbor as yourself, would you be willing to see someone else in pain or someone going to Hell without doing something for them or without telling them about Christ? Platitudes are so easy -- “Of course, I don’t want anyone to go to Hell!” Well, if that is the case, what are you going to do? Are you going to do nothing to reach out to another woman who needs to know about Christ?  Are you going to do nothing when you see a woman in emotional distress or pain?  Yes, it is easy to walk away, because we think that someone else will step in to help. But what if no one else steps in to help?  Does that woman continue to suffer or ultimately go to Hell, because you didn’t take the time to tell her about Christ?

Yes, I know that it is hard to know what to say to another woman. Yes, it is hard to get out of our normal routine to do something unselfishly. But, what has Christ told us to do? Aren’t we to tell everyone of the Good News!  Aren’t we to be doers of the Word?  Aren't we to obey God's commands? The Apostle John states it this way: “Everyone who believes (adheres to trusts, and relies on the fact) that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah) is a born-again child of God: and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of Him (His offspring). By this we come to know (recognize and understand) that we love the children of God; when we love God and obey His commands (orders, charges) – [when we keep His ordinances and are mindful of His precepts and His teaching]. For the [true] love of God is this: that we do His commands [keep His ordinances and are mindful of His precepts and teachings]. And these orders of His are not burdensome, oppressive, or grievous.” – (I John 4: 1-3. Amplified Bible).

Active Relational Christian Mentoring is all about reaching out to help other women. It is about obeying the commands of God and keeping His precepts and sharing His teachings. Within ARCM we can easily share the Good News. Within ARCM we can help, support and empower other women to be all they can be for themselves, their family and for the Lord. ARCM promotes the development of relationships for the betterment of the mentee or to help the mentee in some way or another. Moreover, an ARCM relationship of caring could be just the thing that keeps a young woman from making a terrible mistake in her life. It could give her hope, give her a feeling of belonging, give her knowledge, and more importantly give her an opportunity for true freedom and an eternal life that starts in the here and now with a relationship with Christ. What better gift could you give another woman than the knowledge of Who Christ is and how He would love to be her Savior? She can either accept or turn down the offer of eternal life, but she can’t make that choice unless she learns about Christ and His love for her? You can make a difference in the life of another woman by obeying God and sharing your knowledge of the personal freedom of Salvation.

Instead of allowing the nightly news to bring us to the point of despair, we have to step up in obedience and become active relational Christian mentors who reach out to women who don’t know Christ or who need our Christian love to grow ever more positive and beautiful. By obeying the commands of Christ and His Father, we can give another woman the chance at personal freedom. For with personal freedom comes the desire for national freedom and the desire to promote freedom for other peoples as well. Christ gives us personal freedom or liberty. We should want to promote our national freedom while longing for freedom for people everywhere. ISIS wants to control and take away everyone’s’ freedoms. But, ISIS can never take away the freedom we have received in knowing Christ as our Savior.  “… for the Lord is Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” – (II Corinthians 3: 17. NKJV).

If every Christian woman would be obedient to Christ and step up to share her Christ-light with our young ladies and the young women in our neighborhoods, we could make a huge difference in the attitudes and beliefs of our nation. We could give our young women the chance to have liberty. If they have the liberty of Christ, they will also want to protect the liberty that God has given them to live in a free country. They will want that same liberty for people everywhere as well. But, if we fail to teach and mentor the next generation and the younger generations, who can make a difference, we are letting the evil influences of the world control their futures and our future as well. If we don’t obey the Word of God and share the Gospel as well as live it day in and day out, many people will not only be lost, but they will give up liberty for an eternity in Hell. If we don’t do something soon, it will be too late for many. You can do it!  You can become an Active Relational Christian Mentor who leads other women to freedom through your obedience to Christ.

“Satan doesn’t need for us to fall into gross sin
 in order to defeat us;
a large dose of laziness will do the trick just as well.

Put Christ first in your life, and then commit
every hour of the day to Him.”

(Billy Graham in Quotes)

1 comment:

  1. Hi, Vicky, oh, how true your words (the Word of God) are! Excetional work here, and it is needed by Christians here in the United States and all over the world. Speaking about the liberty and freedom of being in Christ- saved, obeying and following Him daily- has been on my mind so much recently...we have the unity of the Holy Spirit, dearest friend :) Thank you! You said so much more and very, very well. I am forwarding your article to friends, especially young Christian women I know who are living in the Living Water of the Son of God, Jesus, and they are studying, being good moms, friends, wives, sisters; so many of these and us want to do Active Relational Christian Mentoring (ACRM). Thank you, dear one; keep up your great work!!! If you do not mind, I am wanting to grow followers, so, too, I am putting my blog address here; hope this is okay. I follow you!
    as you know, and it is well worth it. Wouldn't miss your writing for anything. I am also putting a notice of your posting on my Facebook page. Love and blessings always. The Healing is Always Christ: