God’s Grace & Our Faith (Part 11): Faith Works By Love (Part 10) – Fully Persuaded of God’s Love

by Rick

Today we will continue our series entitled “God’s Grace & Our Faith.” For the past few days, we looked at John 1:14&17 and Galatians 5:6. I shared messages about how faith works by love.  I will add a passage from Ephesians and Romans for us to consider as we continue to flow in this vein.

(John 1:14 NIV)

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

(John 1:17 NIV)

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

(Galatians 5:6 KJV)  

For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.  

(Ephesians 3:16,17 TPT)
16 And I pray that he would unveil within you the unlimited riches of his glory and favor until supernatural strength floods your innermost being with his divine might and explosive power.

17 Then, by constantly using your faith, the life of Christ will be released deep inside you, and the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life.

(Romans 8:28:29-30 & 38,39)

28 We know that in everything God works for the good of those who love him. These are the people God chose, because that was his plan. 

29 God knew them before he made the world. And he decided that they would be like his Son. Then Jesus would be the firstborn of many brothers and sisters. 

30 God planned for them to be like his Son. He chose them and made them right with him. And after he made them right, he gave them his glory.

38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 

39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

So what does this mean for you today?  A few things.

The life of faith can be characterized in many ways. I will attempt to give you one way to look at it this morning.

Think of a person who comes to God after living for several years. They have developed hopes, desires, dreams, and aspirations. They have a concept of the man/woman they want to be. They have a picture of the future they want to create, and they are busy creating it. But then they get Born-Again. Once they are Born-Again, the Holy Spirit begins to speak to them. God begins to reveal the plans He made for them from the foundations of the world. God speaks to them through His word (the Bible), the Holy Spirit, dreams, visions, circumstances, and others. This person now has clear promises from God (in the written word of God and in the myriad of ways He has spoken to them). This person now has to believe God believes about them. They have to open up their heart wide enough to believe that God is good enough to do what He said, even though they don’t feel like they are worthy, qualified, or prepared.  

As they attempt to live by faith and believe what God believes about them, they go on their merry way in life. They still work to perform, have relationships to develop, and things to do on a daily basis. They may be married, have children, have a business or career, etc. So as they are attempting to experience the life that God has given them, they have a daily routine of what some consider to be “normal life” while, at the same time, they are living with God’s amazing dream in their heart. Because they wanna be a good Christian, they do all they can to live a life of faith. They meditate and medicate on God’s word, spend time in prayer daily, attend a local church, get a steady diet of Bible teaching, and connect with a community of believers. But even with all of this, they invariably make mistakes. When their performance doesn’t measure up to the size of God’s promises, or God’s dream for their life, they have to battle the thoughts of guilt, shame, and condemnation.

If the devil can get them to feel condemned, they will stop believing God. You cannot be in-fear and in-faith at the same time. Fear cancels faith, and faith cancels fear. God’s Kingdom functions by faith. Satan’s kingdom functions by fear. So if this person allows the devil to cause them to live in a constant state of guilt and condemnation, they will feel like they have derailed themselves from their destiny. The devil will tell them that they will never measure up, and since they have not measured up to this point, they can give up on the dream. The devil will tell them that they will never become what God said. The devil does everything that he can, on a daily basis, to keep this person focused on their humanity and their flaws.  

God on the other hand, is doing all they can to get this person to stop looking at themselves. God does all that he can to get this person to focus on him, on his goodness, and on his faithfulness towards them. God tells them that He is good, that he loves him, that he made plans for them from the foundations of the world, and he is tirelessly committed to those plans. The person is then left with a decision. They can either attempt to live by faith based on their perceived level of goodness towards God (which we all know is flawed), or they can live by faith based on God’s endless love and amazing grace.

For the past couple of weeks,, I have been trying to get you to detach, decouple, and disconnect your faith from your performance. This is the only way you will believe what God believes about you for the long haul. If you focus on your performance, you will never open your heart to the size of God’s plans and purposes for your life, and you will never have consistent faith. For your faith to be consistent, it must be rooted and grounded and God’s consistent love towards you. When you know your faith is based on God’s endless love and unearned grace, you are not moved by the limits or flaws of your humanity. It is then and only then that you are free to believe God believes about you! You are free to pursue God’s plans and purposes by faith, knowing that he has given you all things that pertain to life and godliness by his unearned grace. This is #TheGraceLife.

I want you to meditate on what God just said to you today. To help you, I will give you a few quick thoughts:

1.  God’s motivation to bless you is His love, not your faith. What caused God to make plans for you, to seek you out, to save you, and to use you for His glory, is His LOVE and GRACE, not your faith or perfection.  

2.  When you are convinced that God loves you with an everlasting love, it puts you in a position to receive from Him without any hindrances becuase God’s love is perfect, and His love will never fail. You are not perfect, and your performance will fail. So understanding how faith works (faith works by love, not your performance) is critical.

3.  When you are convinced God loves you, it is easier for you to believe what the Holy Spirit is revealing, no matter how incredible or amazing it seems.  Because at that point, you believe God and what He wants to do in your life because He loves you, not because you are perfect.  

4.  When you are convinced God loves you, that He wants to bless you by grace, because of His everlasting love towards you, you will believe God with your confidence in Him and not you. This way, you know you don’t have to be perfect to receive God’s promises. You can actually rest in His love. I hope you better understand now what Paul meant when he said, “the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life” (Ephesians 3:17 TPT).

5.  When you are convinced God loves you, your faith is truly energized. Your faith finds its strength in knowing that God loves you.  When your faith is rooted in God’s love towards you because it is not contingent upon you, it is only contingent upon God and His tireless dedication to you and the plans He made for you before the foundation of the world.

6.  Rest in God’s love and allow His love to become the very source and root of your life. This means that when you make mistakes, when you feel like you are unqualified or unworthy, or when you feel like God’s dream will never happen becuase you will never be good enough, just stop for a moment and minister to yourself. Walk over to a mirror and say, “GOD LOVES YOU AND HE WANTS TO DO WHAT HE WANTS TO DO IN YOUR LIFE BECAUSE HE LOVES YOU. SO STOP FOCUSING ON YOU! FOCUS ON THE LOVE OF GOD TOWARDS YOU!” 

7.  If you walk with God long enough, there will be many moments when you have to minister to yourself. The devil is constantly putting thoughts in your mind. These are thoughts of fear, failure, doubt, unbelief, guilt, shame, and condemnation. God is also constantly putting thoughts in your mind. These are thoughts of love, peace, grace, favor, success, purpose, and Kingdom impact. To win the battle in your mind, you must be fully persuaded that NOTHING shall separate you from the love of God. Faith works by love!      

Declaration of Faith

Father, I thank You for teaching me to meditate and medicate on Your love towards me.  The more convinced I become of Your amazing love, the more I know everything will work together for my good.  You chose me before I chose You.  You chose me before You made the world.  You planned for me to be like Your Son Jesus on this planet.  As Jesus is, so am I in this world!

I live with confidence because my confidence is in You and Your amazing love.  Not in me or my performance.  I am fully persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate me from Your love, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

I am Your beloved.  I am Your favorite.  I am the apple of Your eye.  Therefore, I know GREATER IS COMING FOR ME!  I declare this by faith.  In Jesus’ name, Amen!

This is Today’s Word!  Apply it and Prosper.

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