Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Jesus-ALL

Jesus said to her, “Woman, believe Me, the hour is coming when you will neither on this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews.  But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.  God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
John 4:21-24

The one thing we must never do in our inner life is make Jesus less than what He is and less than what He can do.  If we do diminish Him in our spirit, mind, emotions and will,  we will never worship in spirit and in truth.  We must learn to continuously worship in spirit by attributing all worth to Jesus and worship in truth by continuously seeing Jesus for who He is as truth.

It is only when we see Jesus as ALL and we give Him worship as ALL that we become the kind of people God seeks. Every disciple should want to be easily found by God!

We would all do well to begin each day affirming that the presence of the Spirit of Christ within us is where ALL truth is and where ALL inspiration to love begins.  If we would simply rest  each day in ALL the worth He is and ALL the truth He is, we would begin our day in spirit and in truth.  Only then are we  where the God who seeks true worshippers can easily find us.

In this world all we see is not what it appears to be.  The world hides lies behind many masks and we are all easily fooled into attributing truth to lies.  To believe in all we see around us is to certainly begin our day in less instead of all.  To give worth (worship) to all we see around us is to certainly begin our day in the wrong spirit.  We would do well to remember that all the world rests in the wicked one but all disciples can rest in Jesus.

In every disciple Jesus is ALL he appears to be now and forever.  He wears no  masks, tells no lies and inspires only love.  God would have each of us worship Him by attributing to Him ALL and by seeing Jesus as ALL truth  from the moment we awaken each day.

Worship Him now in spirit and in truth.  God will always find this worship because He seeks it.

 
Bud McCord
Abide International

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Conversion



 As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.Col. 2:6-7

When we receive Jesus we experience firsthand the grace of God.  At conversion we receive in Jesus all God has for us and all God demands of us.  The new convert is filled with the joy of receiving pure love from its true source.

Some conversions may not be as dramatic as others.  Perhaps the force of a some conversions is due to the depth of one’s hunger and thirst for true love.  No matter the force of one’s conversion the disciple of Jesus knows that love has arrived and is like living water to the interior life.

Each day should be a new experience with conversion.  We never move past conversion because it is from the same source that we drink each and every day.

Have you experienced the power of conversion today?

 
Bud McCord
Abide International

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

In The Vineyard with Jesus



Every disciple of Jesus should be discipled as they walk alone through the Father’s vineyard with Jesus.  If Jesus could take each of His followers into the vineyard and tenderly describe the relationship He and the Father have with us and want to develop over time in us, we would rejoice at the chance to be His disciple branches forever.

As hard as it may be to believe, the Holy Spirit , who is the Spirit of Christ, will take every believer on a personal tour of  the Father’s vineyard.  The Holy Spirit is the guide to the Father’s vineyard if we will surrender and go alone. All we must do is ask the Spirit to take us into the Father’s vineyard to see ourselves in Jesus.

In the vineyard with the Spirit we learn that discipleship is an intimate and eternal connection to and cooperation with Jesus, the Vine. This connection, intimacy and cooperation with Jesus is cultivated daily by the Father for the singular purpose of delivering into the world the glorious fruit of Divine intimacy which is love. 

It is in the vineyard with the Spirit that we see ourselves as disciples who receive by grace from Jesus all God wants from us.  It is in the vineyard we learn to rejoice in our complete dependence on Jesus.  It is in the vineyard that we embrace the fact that we exist to release freely the fruit of pure love which comes from our connection to and cooperation with Jesus.

It is in the vineyard that we finally find rest for our souls and a vision of true discipleship. 

For those who long for discipleship that is true and authentic, let the Spirit of Christ take you by the hand and walk you through the Father’s vineyard.  This walk will change you forever.


“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.  If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.  If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.  By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples. John 15:1-8

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Jesus: See Him



"Christians have made the gospel about so many things . . . things other than Christ.
Jesus Christ is the gravitational pull that brings everything together and gives them significance, reality, and meaning. Without him, all things lose their value. Without him, all things are but detached pieces floating around in space.
It is possible to emphasize a spiritual truth, value, virtue, or gift, yet miss Christ . . . who is the embodiment and incarnation of all spiritual truth, values, virtues, and gifts."
 
Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola - Jesus Manifesto
 

And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. Col. 1:17

Is the Jesus described by Leonard Sweet and Frank Viola my daily Jesus?

Is the Jesus described  by Paul in the book of Colossians the Jesus I see abidiing in me right now?

Do I see Jesus being before all things?

Do I see the one who died for me and lives in me holding all things together?

Do I really see that my very existence depends on His existence?

Am I really aware that He gives me my value?

Is He really keeping me from becoming  detached pieces floating in space?

What space does such a Person deserve in my mind, emotions and will?  Does He have that space in me?

Being I can ever hope to live Jesus I must first see Him clearly.

May God open my eyes and the eyes of all His children to see Jesus.
 
 
Bud McCord
Abide International

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Stubborn



I love leaders!  I love people who know where they are going and inspire others to go joyfully with them.  Having declared my love for leaders, I need to lovingly tell my leader friends  “Stubborn is not a spiritual leadership gift.”

Listen again to what the fruit of the Spirit is.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is
love,
joy,
peace,
longsuffering,
kindness,
goodness,
faithfulness,
gentleness,
self-control.
Against such there is no law."
Galatians 5:22-23

For too long some leaders have hidden their stubbornness beyond a very thin veneer of spirituality. They have found a way to be stubborn by simply saying to those who follow them  “God gave me this vision.”  

A vision given by God can and must be lived without being stubborn.  If a vision cannot be lived by the fruit of the Spirit, it is not of God.   If the implementation of  a vision requires we force others to follow and use the words “God told me” to gain cooperation, then we are not leading as Jesus lived and led.   

Jesus was not stubborn.  He invited and inspired others to follow Him.  Jesus took on the form of a servant and even washed feet.   

Stubborn may feel good for a time, but it is never a satisfying way to lead.

Truly stubborn leaders end up alone at the top of a pyramid where there is only hot air to keep them company.

 

Bud McCord
Abide International

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Jesus and Reality Or Jesus is Reality



"Reality is the conjectured state of things as they actually exist, rather than as they may appear or might be imagined. In a wider definition, reality includes everything that is and has been, whether or not it is observable or comprehensible. A still more broad definition includes everything that has existed, exists, or will exist."

One of the most fascinating things about Jesus is how He made Himself the subject of His own teaching.  Unlike all other religious leaders who teach about reality and call people to connect correctly to that reality, Jesus made Himself the reality to which everyone must connect.

If Jesus had simply explained reality like other teachers He never would have generated such hatred toward Himself or such love toward Himself.  By making Himself reality Jesus invites us to live a Person as reality not a system of reality.

True Christianity is not teaching Jesus is reality.  True Christianity is   teaching Jesus is reality and living Him as our reality.  “Without Me you can do nothing…”John 15:5 “For to me to live is Christ.” Phil. 1:21

Listen to the words of Paul in Collossians 1:15-20 and Jesus is reality will be clear.


Collosians 1:15-20
He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.  And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.  And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell,  and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.

Do you live Jesus as reality?

 

Bud McCord
Abide International

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Spirituality and Attention



“Whatever gets your attention gets you.” Mike Wells


It takes some time for us to verify if a great saying is actually true.  Just because something sounds true does not mean it will stand the test of time and practice in our lives.

After many years of testing Mike Well’s statement about attention I can confidently say this saying is true and worthy of trust.

Each day I live the challenge to stay focused on the perfection of Jesus instead of dividing my attention with the distractions and distortions of the world that surrounds me.  For me, the question of who gets my attention each day has become the singular question that determines the quality of my daily life and love.

I have come to believe that staying focused on Jesus is the very essence of what some call spiritual warfare.  When I start my day focused on and inspired by Jesus I defeat the power of lack that fills and frustrates the world around me and I begin to deliver the love of Jesus that abides abundantly in me.  Focusing on Jesus in me as my source of life and love keeps me receptive to His perfection and something of His life and love can flow from my life day by day.

Spirituality, attention and love are forever linked.  Anyone who wants to move beyond imitating Jesus sporadically toward living Jesus continuously will need to live with their attention on Jesus moment by moment.  When at war one’s attention must stay on what wins the war.

Jesus wins the war in us and through us moment by moment if we pay attention to Him.  Abide in Jesus!


 


Bud McCord
Abide International