Thursday, April 30, 2015

Jesus, You Are Welcome Here!

For the last 20 years it has been my practice to awaken every morning  finding the presence of Jesus in me, acknowledging His presence and welcoming His presence.  These words from C.S. Lewis taken from his book  “Mere Christianity” certainly played a central part in this wonderful spiritual discipline that has so blessed me and many others:

"The real problem of the Christian life comes where people do not usually look for it. It comes the very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply in shoving them all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in. And so on, all day. Standing back from all your natural fussings and frettings; coming in out of the wind.

We can only do it for moments at first. But from those moments the new sort of life will be spreading through our system: because now we are letting Him work at the right part of us. It is the difference between paint, which is merely laid on the surface, and a dye or stain which soaks right through.

He never talked vague, idealistic gas. When He said, ‘Be perfect,’ He meant it. He meant that we must go in for the full treatment. It is hard; but the sort of compromise we are all hankering after is harder—in fact, it is impossible.

It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: it would be a jolly sight harder for it to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present. And you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go bad." From Mere Christianity

Never start any day in which you wish to be the kind of human being you were meant to be without first focusing on Jesus and finding Him to be all He is for you and in you.  I find that starting every day with the simple phrase “Jesus, you are welcome here”  while placing my hand over my heart gives me the right starting point for every day.  It is time to fly!

Bud McCord
Abide International

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Holy Spirit Come!

One of the most common prayers heard during modern worship is “Holy Spirit Come!”  As with many prayers the intention is great, but this request is off center.If the Holy Spirit has not taken up permanence in us at the center we are not of Christ.

But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.  Romans 8:9-11

When we fail to begin with all we need already living in us, we begin to seek what we lack to live elsewhere.  With the Trinity living in us there is no need for looking elsewhere.  We are truly the Temple of God.  All the Christian life we will ever need or ever lives already abides in us.

Perhaps a better, more centered prayer is  “Holy Spirit inspire!”  or “Holy Spirit fill!”.  To keep asking someone to come who is already present seems off  and close to offensive.

Bud McCord
Abide International

Thursday, April 09, 2015

Fight, Flight or Fearless?

Think of the three words fight, flight or fearless.  Which one describes Jesus as He walked among us in this very dangerous and faithless world?  Easy question if you know Jesus’ story. Jesus was, is and always will be fearless.

Now think of Jesus abiding in you as you right now. If  you are sensing the desire to fight or flee because of the circumstances that surround you, can you see you are taking Him with you as you respond?   Are you sure your response is what He wants?  Is your response what you really want?

Can Jesus’ fearlessness be yours?  Can Jesus eliminate your normal reaction to what you fear so much that all you can think of is to fight or flee? Yes, He can but you will  have to move beyond simply imitating Jesus and begin to live Jesus as your life.

Imitation of Jesus still leaves you in control of your reactions.   Living Jesus puts Him in control of your reactions.   Imitating gives you an excuse since you have your limits.  Living Jesus makes His ability the limit of your ability.

The next time your fight or flight desire is moving you to act, ask Jesus is He wants to fight or flee with you.  He will clearly give you an answer if you are willing to obey His answer.

Fear torments and inspires the worst in you. Jesus empowers you to fearlessly love.
Somehow you know that fearless love is what you were made to live.  Jesus in you is what you were made to live.  Live Jesus fearlessly!

“Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.”  I John 4:17-18