Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Faith: Improve Your Relationship with God in 10 Minutes Flat!

Jesus replaced the Jewish law of animal sacrifice by sacrificing
Himself for all of our sins. Now the Jewish law serves only as reminder of how
impossible it is to stop sinning, and how desperately we humans need Jesus
to save us from our sins by His forgiveness, death, and resurrection!

First off, simply take 5 or 10 minutes to simply read this short article. I promise that if you read this article and attempt to apply what I say (which is simply from the Bible), God WILL show his love and blessings to you in real life. I promise that you will literally SEE what God wants in your life. This is a heavy promise, but I promise it easily and without fear since a simple understanding about God will cause an active Christian to understand the real meaning of life. This article cuts right to the chase about how you can quickly improve your relationship with God.

What is faith? Is it obedience? Or is it love? Is it as simple as trusting another person? Well, faith in God actually demands all of these ideals. Simply put, having faith is to believe in something with little or no substantial evidence, such as having solid facts or proof. Remember that God is spiritual, so he will manifest his blessings and his desires in you spiritually more often than physically. The entire purpose of life is to have faith in Christ through thick and thin...all you need is faith. There is nothing beyond this in life. Your entire life, then, should be spent developing your faith. Do not do anything else ever. All needs of life will fulfill themselves in Christ. Do what you must to survive and all extra time in your day is best spent working on your relationship with God. This means reading your entire Bible over and over and over till the day you die and praying. Period.
Daniel in the lion's den. Even when
lions were about to rip him to
shreds, he simply prayed and
held faith. Is your life this bad?
Do you face lions about to tear you
to pieces? Obviously not. So why
does your faith waiver? Surely your
life is not this bad, yet Daniel
held absolute faith and love
in God and was saved!

To live is to die due to sin, but to live in Christ is to live eternally, and all that you need is faith. A lot of people see bad life circumstances as a sign of a negligent or uncaring God. On the contrary, God wants you to be happy, but who can have dependence on God when all they ever want or need is continually given to them? A life of comfort and blessedness will not improve your faith! God uses your suffering to bring you to him in pure dependence. Remember, Adam and Eve's sin was choosing to disobey God and to become autonomous from God, which simply means that they wanted to choose their own life path like gods do. Adam and Eve chose to live for themselves and not for God. This was terrible in the eyes of our God because he made Adam and Eve for the opposite reason! This means that your entire life will be spent experiencing God trying to get you to obey and have faith in him through thick and thin.
You can make your walk with God a lot smoother if you choose right here and now to trust him. Not only that, but whenever something goes wrong that you cannot control, you must turn to God. God wants you to be completely dependent on him, so stop trying to make your life better or easier or more enjoyable or happier. Stop worrying about food and shelter. Stop worrying about college and friends and family and jobs and car troubles...stop everything and turn to God. Period. No words or excuses or life circumstances will ever change this fact. If you are a Christian, then your life belongs to him regardless of what you choose. By becoming a Christian, you give Christ the power to affect your life in unique ways, and some of those unique ways that Christ will get your attention is by forcing you to endure hardship and turn to him. When the day comes that you face hardship and you praise God, on that day you will realize the true meaning of life. No problem will ever make you sad, No sorrow or anguish or issue in life will ever grab your attention. Nothing will ever hold you down. You will be so joyous and confident in the Lord that even when facing death itself you will rejoice. Doesn't that sound so peaceful? Well, it's not a fantasy. This is real life. There's no magic formula. You don't have to be the greatest preacher in the world to feel this kind of joy and peace. All you need is basic, bare-bones faith and be ready for some action on that faith!
Now you know that this means your entire purpose in life is simply to have faith in Christ even when your life falls apart. Faith will be tested, and your actions will reflect your level of faith. James says that faith without works is dead! This is because nothing in life matters except believing God as Abraham did, and that faith and belief will propel you to Christ-likeness, where you will be empowered to being like Christ in your life by faith and action. Suffering brings faith in God because it makes you turn to him for support. So when you suffer in any way, praise God! Thank him that you can turn to God for support and that you are not alone. Remember always that suffering is supposed to bring us closer to God, not further away. Do not become bitter or angry. If you feel bitter or angry or resent your life for its hardships then you are missing the lesson to be learned and the chances are very high that the problem will repeat itself. Be humble, and consult God. When hardship hits you, immediately accept it and pray to God. Beg him for strength and never ever let the lessons fade away. You are not a child anymore. To suffer is to love God more, so when you suffer, immediately turn to God and do not waste your opportunity for glory. Those who have faith in Christ are glorified on Earth and they store up treasures in heaven. Suffering is not an indication that God is not present in your life, but rather it is God's way of telling you to come to him! So suffering is a sign that God is still trying to fix your life, not ruin it.
Jacob wrestles with the angel. Jacob was
so stubborn! Don't be stubborn like him.
He learned some hard lessons and had a
life that was much more difficult than it
needed to be. If he simply had faith, his life
would never have turned so sour (read
about Jacob and Esau)
But remember God does not want you to suffer, he just wants your complete attention, and our sin and suffering interferes with our relationship with him. Most of the hardships we endure are our own fault. So when you give him your complete love and faith, the suffering will completely end, even when life still goes badly. The point is that life isn't about joy or happiness- it's strictly about your friendship with God. You must also have faith in God and love God with all your heart, even when life goes poorly. Homelessness, death of friends and family members, persecution, sorrow and depression, hunger, joblessness... none of these must ever make your faith in God waiver. There is no excuse to stop believing in God, for Christ works best in our suffering and our weakness...Christ said to Paul:
9 But [Christ] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. ” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Life is not about you. It's not about anything but God. You must accept that you are a created being whose sole purpose is to love God with all your heart and body and mind and soul. God created you for this reason alone, and any deviation from this mindset is sinful, and the result of sin is suffering. You can end your suffering by concentrating on God in life. Your life was never meant to be lived as it is which is why there is so much suffering. You can never be happy until you choose to love God fully. No spouse, family member, friend, job, thing or money will ever fill your heart, for you were created to love God only, and it is only when you choose to do what you were created for that you can finally be at peace, for our God is a God of peace and love. Love and faith in him gives you pleasure once you realize that it is what you need. Sadly, you probably have the mindset that you don't see yourself being happy without all your things and friends and family and so on. Yet, when you buy that new television, it is only a couple years until you need another television in order to keep being satisfied with it. And with sex, it only lasts a short while before you desire to have sex again. Anything apart from God will not last. Only God will fill your heart and stay there forever. No thing, no job, and no person are permanent. A life in Christ revolves around loving him in spite of having an awful life. In fact, Jesus says:
24 "For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it."
Abraham was about to sacrifice
his only son as a test of faith
from God. He believed in God
so perfectly that he did not
waiver even in the face of
great loss. He waited so long for
his son to be born, yet he was
confident that the Lord was
good and just. This is faith and this
is how you should be with God.

When you work on your faith, you then begin to understand that God wants love, and through faith in God you are then capable of loving him, which builds your relationship. After this, you can then act on God's desires. Don't jump too far ahead though, remember that doing God's will demands strong faith in his love. If a bump in the road causes you to hate or resent God then your faith is not where it needs to be. For example, remember how Jesus suffered? In short, Jesus was beaten, flogged (whipped with metal razors to shred skin), his head was pierced with thorns from a crown of thorns and he was hammered through his hands to a large wooden cross where he bled for 6 hours until death. Remember how Paul suffered? Paul was beaten with iron rods, stoned nearly to death, whipped a total of 39 times on multiple occasions (where 40 lashes causes death), and finally he was imprisoned and executed for his belief in Christ.
Remember, to be a true Christian you must live a life of faith in God. Keep looking to God. Don't worry about jobs, homes, school, future or money. Life is about living and dying for God. Faith is difficult to understand for most people, so let's expand upon this idea of faith. Let's begin with Abraham, since he was a true man of faith. He was perhaps one of the first people in the Bible to believe in God in a way that was not law-bound or duty-bound, but rather he had a faith-driven love for God that went past those rules and laws. In the New Testament, Paul gives a unique account of Abraham's faith, stating
3 What does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”[a]
Abraham's faith was credited to him as righteousness, but nowhere does it say good deeds or mighty battles paved Abraham's way to sharing God's eternal glory; no, only faith was credited to him as righteousness, and we all know that the kingdom of God belongs to the righteous alone, and where our faith is considered holy in God's eyes. In fact, Christ himself says,
20 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Sin itself all began with plain old disobedience (Satan disobeyed God in his pride), and the chief desire of God is to reel us in, and to show us that we can trust him even when we don't know what's going on or what to do exactly or even why. The point is nothing more than believing in God. Period.
Abraham believed in God and God praised him for it. To conclude, I will finalize with this statement: The first step toward any healthy human relationship is simply building trust, and the only way to build trust in God is to choose to believe in him. Faith=trust, but with God, trust is a choice, nothing more. You do not need years of talking to God or getting to know him or anything to be able to trust him. If you simply believe that God loves you, then the trust is there. The rest of your life will be spent making choices to believe him during life's hardships, which is fairly difficult for some people. No knowledge or revelation or divine intervention or source of luck or wisdom is ever involved. No magic, no money-- just your heart and your decision to believe. Trust that Christ died for you and rose again for you, and choose to obey. And the less you know, the better, for in your own ignorance you will have to go to God even more to make it through life, and Christ's power is made perfect is complete weakness. Be weak. Stop relying on yourself. Stop relying on your own intelligence and intuition and luck and hope. Just pray to God, read the Bible every day for at least an hour, and TRUST CHRIST.