Wednesday, October 29, 2014

HOPE



And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
I Cor. 13:13

To lose hope is to lose love.


Hope exists between faith and love.  Without hope the ecosystem of divine love ceases to function.

The Apostle Paul affirms in I Cor. 13 that three realities function together so that love can continue to exist among us.  These three are faith, hope and love.  Love is clearly the goal.

Faith is the human capacity to receive love directly from God in Christ.  Faith allows us to receive the love we need to be truly human.  We are truly dependent beings and all things begin in us by receiving or by faith.  It is only by faith that love is born in humans.

Hope is like a bridge over which we walk in order to deliver love to others.  Faith alone cannot deliver love.  Someone filled with hope must cross the bridge each day.

The enemy of our soul attacks our hope.  He attempts to destroy our hope and destroy the bridge over which love must pass.  It is no accident that so many disciples of Jesus are depressed.  The enemy of love is at work to destroy our hope.

To lose hope is not just painful for us.  It is also painful for those who wait for love on the other side of the bridge.  To lose hope always means some love goes undelivered.

Hope abides in every disciple because Jesus is the source of divine hope.  We must cultivate deep and lasting hope in Christ if we would guarantee the delivery of love.  To hope in Jesus is to prepare ourselves to cross the bridge of hope each day.

Cultivate a deep hope in Jesus.  Stay focused on Him moment by moment.  He is the source of hope.  To lose hope is to lose love as well and love must not be lost.

 


Bud McCord
Abide International

Friday, October 17, 2014

Never Underestimate Jesus



"Christ is all…"   Col. 3:11

"He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own[d] did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name."
John 1:10-12

"And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory,
the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."
John 1:14

When we underestimate Jesus we lose something of our own humanity and our future. When we do not see Jesus as “all “ we let someone or something else occupy the space reserved for only Him.

When the church underestimates Jesus the church’s love grows weak and sick. The church where Jesus is not all is living in lack and not in abundance.

When I underestimate Jesus my love grows anemic and I live in lack and not in abundance.

Look again at the worlds “Jesus is all”. If we underestimate Jesus in our evaluation of reality the consequences can be much more profound than we imagine.

Losing the right to become “children of God” is no small thing. It is all. When we underestimate Jesus we always lose something and we can end up with nothing.


 
Bud McCord
Abide International

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Connection



 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.
Col.1:16-17

Sometimes we do not let the Bible say to us everything it was inspired to say. Sometimes without meaning to we diminish the impact of what the Bible says. Sometimes on purpose we refuse to hear what the Bible says because what it says does not fit our preconceived ideas.

Read again the words from Col. 1:16-17 and let the Bible reveal Jesus to you. The Bible’s main goal is to get you face to face with all Jesus is in every area of your life because He is the way, the truth and life.  Let the Bible do in you what it was written to do by the Holy Spirit’s inspiration.  Let the Bible take you to Jesus.

According to these two verses there exists a connection right now between Jesus and all things.  Do we see this connection each day as we interact with all things around us?  Do we really understand that Jesus’ existence is connected to all things right now?

If we really did see Jesus connected as Creator and Sustainer of all things would it change anything about our day to day behaviour?  Does this Jesus connection matter?

Think about the way we humans mistreat nature each day.  If we could see Jesus connected to all the manifestations of nature around us, would we still throw trash in a river?  If we could see Jesus still connected to nature would we treat many animals as only a means to an end?

If we could still see the connection between Jesus and every one of the 7 billion people on this planet would we be so quick to call someone an idiot?  If we saw each person as still connected to Jesus as Creator and Sustainer would we support racism or abort a baby?

We run a great risk when we do not let the Bible fully reveal all it says about reality and especially what it says about Jesus as the source of reality.

Jesus is still connected to all things as Creator and  Sustainer. I need to see and respect this connection in all things.  I need to appreciate the connection that everything has to Jesus. I need to do all I can to bless this connection to Jesus in all things so all can see and appreciate Jesus’ connection for them and to them as Creator and Sustainer.

It is not a big step from appreciating Jesus as the Creator and Sustainer to accepting Jesus as the Saviour.  And what a different and intimate connection that is to Jesus!
Bud McCord
Abide International

Thursday, September 18, 2014

True Spirituality



"I am the true vine"
Jesus

 
True spirituality is birthed into this world only in connection with its source which is the perfect life of Jesus Christ.  As surely as a true grape is proof of a living connection that existed with a real vine, so, too, the fruit of a truly spiritual person is proof of connection to Jesus, the True Vine.

There are so many spiritualities that claim to be true in our world yet they can never be.  Theyfail to carry within them the Holy DNA of the Spirit of Jesus. Whatever these human spiritualities may be and  no matter how many say they are the true, the test of them all will be proven connection to to the Holy DNA of  Jesus.

It may be hard for us to see the great gulf between all so called spiritualites and the true Spirituality of connection to Jesus. Even so the gulf will be made abundantly clear when Jesus is placed close to everything that He did not inspire.  On that day the missing DNA will be clear to even the blind.

Christ is us and connected eternally to our spirit is the source of all true spirituality.  If we would just come to Him in the inner sanctuary of our lives, we would finally begin to worship in spirit and in truth and His Holy Spirit would begin to send His precious grapes through our lives and out from us as love.

“Christ is all and is in all.” Col. 3:11

 
Bud McCord
Abide International

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