From our monthly News Letter Sep-Oct 2018.
This is a critical question that demands an in-depth and meticulous thought.
For every endeavor one embarks upon, there is always preparation.
The parable of the ten virgins in Matthew’s gospel chapter 25:1-13 will help us.
Also read“YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE”?
Ten vurgins prepared to meet the bride groom. Five of them were wise -sincere Christians while the other five were foolish -hypocrites.
The foolish ones did not take extra oil, posses grace – meaning inadequate preparation and hence were disqualified. Do you have extra oil for your lamp? Is your light on or off? Please, check.
In Matthew 22:1-14, Jesus illustrated the kingdom if heaven with parable of wedding feast. Many are called to the wedding feast, that is to salvation but few have the wedding garment, the righteousness of Christ, the sanctification of the Spirit. We are all called to prepare for the scrutiny and those who put on the Lord Jesus, who have a Christian temper of
mind; who lives by faith in Christ and to whom He is all and all, have the wedding garment.
How prepared are you to meet your God? Are you putting on a wedding garment? You need to be very sure and absolutely convinced because that is the only ticket or criteria for your entry.
For one to meet God, one must conform to His standard, fulfil His conditions and principles. For instance:
Holiness: God is holy and can never compromise His standard. In Exodus 19:10-15 God gives Israelites two days to prepare themselves, wash their clothes before coming to meet Him at Mount Sinai.
The journey of the Israelites with God that supposed to last for 40 days was extended to 40 years because of their unfaithfulness and ungodliness. God is holy and want His people to be holy too.
Jesus died on the cross to destroy the nature of sin, that which separates man from God. By His resurrection He restored man the nature of God.
Holiness is our nature as believers and followers of Jesus Christ. it flows from within us. It is part of us because we posses the gene/seed of God through Jesus. Whoever that is prepared to meet God must be clothed with garment of holiness (Hebrews). Check yourself! Which garment are you putting on as you walk towards meeting your God? IS it garment of sin – sexual immorality, lying, unforgiveness, idolatry, worldliness, greediness? You must put them off for God can never behold iniquity. 2 Timothy 2:19 tells us about the standard of God – whoever that call the name of God must depart from iniquity. You must die to sin, get rid of your sinful nature and put on the new nature, the nature of holiness (Ephesians 4:23-24).
Your preparation should not be based on your own standard. A life that is prepared to meet God must be absolutely sure, very convinced, not quessing or based on assumption but confirmed that he/she. has the new nature..
Jesus in John 3:3 emphasized it when He was addressing Nicodemus. Unless a man is born again he cannot enter the kingdom of God. Unless a man possess the Spirit of God, absolutely and consciously yields and control or led by the Spirit of God, he/she cannot meet God.
A life that possess the Spirit of God should display in action, in words, in thoughts and even in appearance, Infact in all things the most prominent attribute and evidence of the Holy Spirit which is holiness. You need to check your life once again brother/sister- How prepared are you to meet your God?
A LIFE THAT IS PREPARED TO MEET GOD
Romans 12:1-2 says, “Offer your body as living sacrifice. A life or one that is prepared to meet God must continuously and delibrately. laydown his/her life as a living sacrifice on the altar of God. God does not accept any-how sacrifice. It cannot be of a dead animal. It must be living and healthy before it can be accepted. Leviticus 1:1-4
In our days, the sacrifice God looks for is not of bull, ram, and birds but the sacrifice of a life that has been redeemed from sin and the flesh; a life that is totally laid ob the altar of sacrifice.
Beloved, pause and check again. What kind of life are you placing on your altar of sacrifice? Is it a double standard life -hypocrisy/compromise? Is it a decay and disintegrated life of fornication, adultery, lesbianism, gay, homosexual, masturbation, abortion, cultism, stealing, cheating etc.; No! It can’t be, for sacrifice such as this is not a reasonable and acceptable sacrifice. Your life is already on fire on the altar of sacrifice. Always remain burnt. A burnt sacrifice does not turn back to its original form. For instance – Ice block melts to water, vis-versa but burnt paper turns to ashes and cannot return to its original form. So remain burnt so that your aroma will always be pleasant and acceptable by God.
A life that is prepared to meet God must settle the case of unforgiveness.
Forgiveness is the ability to remember the wrongs done by others without feeling the pain.
Love and understanding play role in forgiveness. We must cry to God for a heart filled with love so as to always put on love as a basic clothe. With an understanding of what Jesus did for us on the cross, nothing should be too big to let go. We should learn to give excuses for offences committed; carry the bowels of mercy; forgive in advance; look beyond the person and see in her/him Mr. Flesh at work.
Jesus our role model. understood this. He differed all odds, went to the cross just to crush Mr. Flesh (Chief producer of unforgiveness). He put him to death on the cross so that we shall be free and our eyes open to follow and act/be like Him. God through Jesus forgives us even while we yet sinners. Jesus prayed for His killers. Stephen also prayed the same to demonstrate to us the possibility of frgiveness.
Note: God has forgiven us of our sins, but each time we sin by refusing to forgive others, those sins are recalled. Matthew 18-23-25. It is life for life and forgiveness for forgiveness Romans 12:17-19.
A life that is prepared to meet God must fulfil the condition Jesus gives in Luke 9:23-26
· Deny yourself
· Carry your cross daily
· Follow Him
· Loose yourself for Him
· Suffer shame for Him
· Cleave steadfastly in Him
· Loose the world
Unless one meet up these conditons, he/she will not be qualified to meet his/her God. Self denial means to forget self, disown yourself, loose sight of yourself and interest, refuse or give up yourself, renounce or leave yourself behind.
Carrying our cross daily entails yielding for the burden of Jesus deliberately, voluntarily and consciously. The burden of Jesus is seeking for lost souls and touching lives. It involves enduring shame, suffering and pain momentarily. They come in different forms, at different levels and time. So we must not choose altarnatives, cut corners. dodge them or jump out of them but patiently accept and endure tnem so that your mind will be renewed and you will be able to achieve your supreme objective of becoming like your master Jesus and meeting your God..
A life that is prepared to meet God must look up and not down as written Colossians 3:1-4 Seek the things that are above, were Christ is, where God you desire to meet is. Set your mind on things that are above not on things that are on earth. Earth is full of distractions, worldliness and evils. You are a child of the kingdom -focus on things above, desire, pursue and occupy your mind with with business of the kingdom. Do not be of the world. The world and itd pleasures are perishing. If you want to enjoy the world and also enjoy heaven, you will end up loosing all and suffer the lost of your soul Luke 9:23. Distinguish yourself from the world in all things. Check your type of business/job, dressing, friendship, association (club) and wherever you spend your leisure time, God is interested in all. In your journey to meet your God, you must be confronted wirh so many conflicts and battles.
You will battle with satan -the tempter and his agents, you will battle with Mr. Flesh who yields and co-operate with the devil to produce sin in you, and battle with the world system. Remember the only sort of spiritual conflict that’s ever successfully won is the one God fights for you. He does not expect you to win the battle, only to surrender to Him and let Him win it for you. So you are not supposed to fight, yours is to fight the good fight of faith 1Timothy 6:12. Yours isn’t a battle of exhusting effort, it’s the battle of believing God for victory.
Trust your God – Jehovah Nissi to prevail for you because the battle is not yours but God’s Exodus 14:14..
Jesus says, “The world will make you suffer but be of good cheer because I have overcome the world John 16:33.
Note also that holiness and righteousness are wonderful shield, defensive coverage and powerful weapons of warfare. Bro Paul says, “Put on the full armour of God, so…. you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” Eph. 6:11. You are to wear God’s armour not -yours. You are to stand -not fight. “The weapons of our warfare are not canal but God’s powerful weapon…. 2 Corinthians 10:4. So act wisely.
There is no one that was created empty. We are all embedded witg great potenials each one according to his ability. A life that is prepared to meet God must discover his own potentials, God’s divine purpose for his life and make effort to accomplish it. Matthew 25:14-30. Ephessians 2:10 says, “God has made us what we are, and in our union with Christ He has created us for a life of good deeds which He has already prepared for us to do”. You are to meet your God with your own score card of good works and receive reward accordingly.
Preparation if meeting God is a conscious, continuous process and should be done minute by minute, all through the day and our lifetime. You should have the understanding that God is in you, He dwells in you -your body is His temple and be conscious how you live your life. You should work on your mind to be ever ready to cmmune with Him in your mind all the time. When your mind is correct/ready in His presence, in your place of prayer, in your quiet time, at the table of His word and in His kingdom at the end. Make conscious effort to renew your mind because it is only a renewed mind that can commune with God..
DANGERS OF INADEQUATE PREPARATION
– Consequence of endless death in hell awaits anyone who did not prepare adequately, and one who neglect his own work.
– All your efforts so far and sacrifices wilk be in vain.
– You will live a miserable and defeated Christian life.
Jesus continued, “Be on your guard then because you do not know what day your Lord will come”. Daily appropriate preparation is very neccessary because a lot of people have gone unprepared -be warned!
Any new day we see is an opportunity given to us to work on ourselves towards drawing close to Him on daily basis. Use the opportunity given to you to repent sincerely
The axe is ready to cut down the trees at the root. Luke 3:9. May you never be cut down. May you never be wasted. God and His angels are ready. In love, He opens His arms to receive you – BE WISE!
Many Christians today take God’s mercy and goodness for granted. They continue to toy with sin loiter in the enemy’s territory, thinking that the absence of immediate consequences is a license to continue to indulge in sin. Romans 2:4-11. To what arear of your life is God pointing His flashlight right now? Notice what the Philistines did to Samson immediately he was captured. Judges 16:21. His eyes were plucked out with sharp object. Why do you think they did this? Be warned! 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, “Put yourselves to the test and find out whether you are living in faith”.
Lamentation 3:40 says, ” Let us examine ourselves and turn back to the Lord. The ball is in your court. May God in His mercy encounter our hearts and make us ever ready to meet Him in Jesus name. Amen.
By Sister Theresa Uzondu
A teacher of God’s word