Suited to a Tea

Welcome to my tea. Please, have a seat; let me pour you some Lady Grey; one lump or two; cream? ....

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Practically becoming a "New Man"

Don't let the title of my post fool you.  It is a sad time in which we live where I have to clarify and quantify what I'm saying:  I am a woman.  God made me this way and it's not a choice, I'm happy and grateful for God's choice for me.

I wish our society could see the peace that comes from knowing Who You Are, Where You came from, Why YOU are here and Where YOU are going.  I'm also a woman of practicality.

I love God's Word because of its practical, "bottom shelf" knowledge.  No disrespect meant, but God knew that I'm a slow learner  sometimes and I need direct communication from Him. God says we ought to become "new men."

Ephesians 4:24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. 

In the time since I began my journey to please and live for the Lord, about 13 years now after I rededicated my life; I've heard many scholars of The Word speak about putting on the "New Man."

 Contextually, what is that verse speaking about.  Let's look.  Like my Pastor always says, the Bible is the best commentary on Itself.

Eph 4:17 ¶ This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,
18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: {blindness: or, hardness}
19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
20 But ye have not so learned Christ;
21 If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus:
 22 That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts;
 23 And be renewed in the spirit of your mind;
24 And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.
 25 Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another.
 26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
 27 Neither give place to the devil.
28 Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. {to give: or, to distribute}
 29 Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. {to...: or, to edify profitably}
 30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
 31 Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
 32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

I came across a scrap of paper tucked away in my Bible this morning with some notes on it.  It was a list of things I told myself to pray for to help me better "walk the talk."

Practically speaking, Eph 4:17-32, tells the Christian how to put on the "New Man."  I once heard a Pastor say, "it's like you are putting on a jacket everyday."  The Christian is dying to self, and putting Christ's "self" on as a replacement, like an article of clothing.  Literally getting dressed by Jesus daily.

On this scrap of paper I wrote:

charity out of a pure heart and good conscience,
faith unfeigned (sincere)
faithful in all things
be not highminded
do good; be rich in good works
distribute (the Gospel) and be willing to communicate
have a true heart in full assurance
hold fast my profession with out wavering
provoke unto love and do good works
be clothed with humility, humble myself
be sober, be vigilant
to not murmur
give thanks
rejoice and praise God all the day long

Every note is taken from scripture, and it keeps what I need to be doing ever before me- constantly reminding me to try to be God's best.

Recently I read an article about someone describing who the Marines really are and why they are so successful as a Military Force.  They said Marines are the most Idealistic of the service-members, so much so that in this un-Idealistic world, they often have to "cloak that idealism in a shell." Now what does that even mean?  The world needs a police force...and that's what the Marines are, the 9-1-1 of modern mankind.

Obviously, I won't ever achieve the perfection or ideal that God's Word talks about, but I can sure try.

That's why I'm a Marine, because I have that "try" mentality.

My whole life will be me trying, and failing and trying and failing.  In all that trying and failing, the real and most important question that remains is:  will I leave the world better?

Eph 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.  

If I can forgive and love my fellow man and stand up to evil, then I'd say, yes.

Marines have identified that ideal, and are fighting the face of Evil every day.
Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen.....Police, and Firefighters also are Idealists.  I'd say they too have made this world a better place.

Living a victorious life in Christ is not some magical spell, but rather an active willingness to apply the above truths in the everyday.