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Day 23: How we Grow

Screen Shot 2015-12-13 at 10.45.44 PM.pngGod wants us to grow up… like Christ in everything. – Ephesians 4:14a

Our heavenly father desires that we mature and develop the characteristics Jesus Christ displayed while on earth. Spiritual growth is not like physical growth, which happens regardless of what we do, but spiritual growth takes an intentional commitment. Our commitment defines who we are, and shows who we will soon become. Many of us are afraid to commit, and end up drifting through life. Others make half-hearted commitments which leads to frustration and mediocrity. And some make a full commitment to worldly goals and end up disappointed and bitter.

God’s part and your part: Christlikeness is the result of making Christ-like choices and depending on the Spirit of God to help us fulfil those choices. Continue reading

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Day 22: Created to Become Like Christ

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Credit: blog.ntm.org

God knew what He was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love Him along the same lines as the life of His son… We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in Him – Romans 8:29

God created us to images of Him. We are called to live godly lives, not to follow every trend that tries to tell us we are gods. We are not gods; God is the only true GOD! Becoming like Christ does not mean we lose our uniqueness, or become mindless clones. Christlikeness is all about transforming our character, growing spiritually and in wisdom. This life is not about us but about God. We exist for His purpose.

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Day 21: Protecting Your Church

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National Christian Center, Abuja Nigeria

You are joined together with peace through the Spirit, so make every effort to continue together in this way. – Ephesians 4:3

It is our job and responsibility to protect the unity of our church.
Unity is the soul of fellowship. Destroying it is ripping the heart out of God’s body- the church. Just like our earthly parents, Jesus enjoys watching His children get along with each other.
Unity is so important to God! The bible gives us applicable advice:
Focus on what we have in common, not our differences: Paul tells us in Romans 14:19, “Let us concentrate on the things which make for harmony, and on the growth of one another’s character.”
Instead of saying, ‘I believe Jesus wore only sandals, and you believe he wore sneakers, so we can’t agree on shoes’ say, “You and I believe Jesus walked on the earth”, and that’s all that matters.

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Day 20: Restoring Broken Fellowship

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God has restored our relationship with Christ, and has given us this ministry of restoring relationships. – II Corinthians 5:18

At this exact moment, I am the least pleased with my brother. I’m sure I’ll have a lot to learn in this chapter. Just as a reminder, we are all sinners, we sin – we’re human, it’s our nature to sin. More people are reading this blog now, and I don’t want you to view me as perfect. I have flaws I will continue to work on, and try my best to be transparent with you about. I will never be perfect, but I will continue to try my best in being a good example to my generation. Jesus is the ONLY perfect one, and He is whom we all need to emulate!

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Day 19: Cultivating Community

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Credit: Cultivatingcommunity.org

You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor. – James 3:18

Community requires commitment. Only the Holy Sprit can create a real fellowship between believers, but our choices and commitments help cultivate it. If you’ve just about had it with fake fellowships, and you’re interested in building a genuine fellowship, you’ll need to make some tough choices and take some risks.

Cultivating community takes honesty: Speaking the truth, especially when it’s uncomfortable means you care. Proverbs 24:26 says, “an honest answer is the sign of true friendship.” Thousands of fellowships have been destroyed by a lack of honesty. In Galatians 6:1, we are told, “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.” People don’t like criticism, but if you speak the truth in love, you will be more appreciated for that. When conflict is handled correctly, we grow closer to one another. Always seek God first before confronting any situation, but make sure you don’t brush things under the carpet.

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Day 18: Experiencing Life Together

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Credit: Essence.com

Each one of you is part of the body of Christ, and you were chosen to live together in peace.  – Colossians 3:15

Life is meant to be shared. Real fellowship is more than meeting for edifying discussions, or socializing. It is experiencing life together, which includes practical serving, sacrificial giving and most importantly, unselfish loving. You can worship with a million people, but real fellowship involves a smaller number of people. Jesus could have chosen 100 disciples, but He understood that 12 was about the maximum number of people for an intimate group if participation is required from all. It’s definitely important to be a part of a church family, but it’s equally as important to belong to a smaller group.
Here are some differences between real and fake fellowships: Continue reading

Day 17: A Place to Belong

Screen Shot 2015-11-26 at 9.48.35 AM.pngYou are members of God’s very own family, citizens of God’s country, and you belong in God’s household with every other Christian – Ephesians 2:19b

We are called to belong, not just to believe. When you enter into God’s family through giving your life to Christ to be born-again, according to Romans 12:5,” though many, we are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.” To Paul, being a ‘member’ of the church means being a vital organ of a living body. Yes, we are created for specific roles, but it’s possible to miss it if we’re not dedicated members of a living church in our local area. Our relationship with others, especially those of the household of faith helps us determine our role in life. One of my favorite songs puts it best: “I need you, you need me, we’re all a part of God’s body… you are important to me, I need you to survive.”
The church is not a building – it’s the people. We are not to neglect the church. We can, and should where necessary, offer well thought out suggestions for improvements, but we must remember that we are commanded to love our spiritual family. Continue reading