Friday, April 20, 2012

shaped by the truth

I am constantly amazed by the fact that the Bible changes us as it does.  It is ink printed on paper or words on a screen.  Yet God fills His words with power that reveals us, transforms us and guides those who live by it.

God promised His followers that His voice is powerful and doesn’t return empty.  The Bible is working.  It uncovers things we cover or things we don’t understand.  The Bible sheds light on the things that are hard to understand.  The Word of God convicts us of wrong, and it lifts us when we our thinking is wrong.

One of the pieces that shapes me the biggest and rattles me the most is how you can read something one day and it has so much for you, but the last time you read it you got something totally different.  Because God works with His word in us, He can reveal different things at different times.

I recently began to read Romans for like the 1,000 time.  It is amazing the new insight and strength and truth I’m being shaped by.

Romans 1:1-7 NASB
Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, 2 which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3 concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh, 4 who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for His name's sake, 6 among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; 7 to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

You have to know Paul’s story to really see how God changed his life.  Paul’s original name was Saul, and Saul’s life consisted of being raised in the best of places and doing all the right and religious things.  He was passionate as well about removing from Earth the people who followed Jesus because those people went against what the religious leaders of his day stood for.

God changed Saul’s life.  What a huge example of how God can and still changes lives today.  In Romans God teaches us what to believe and how to apply to our lives what we believe.  Notice the changes in Paul’s life.

He was called an apostle … set aside to do what God called him to do.

Paul was convinced about Jesus … God’s gift to save the world.

He understood grace … understanding that this life is based on what God did not on what we deserve.

It was Paul’s passion to spread truth … and truth was what God said.

This list could go on and on, and it will go on as I study this book.  But what I examine again is how God changes and shapes my life by his word.  It is tough as a preacher to remember that I don’t just study the Bible so I can preach and teach it.  God desires a relationship, one on one, with me.  It is through the Bible that most of what I need comes from.  He is shaping me.

Are you allowing God to shape your life through the truth of the Bible?  Let His truth shape you.

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happy birthday, Julie

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