And if we love Jesus and do what He speaks in our heart, then He and the Father make their home with us! (Joh.14: 23). Like John we can then say: “Truly, our fellowship is with the Father and the Son.”
I found the first session of our first online African Conference was extremely powerful, here’s my summary and what spoke to me:
When we surrender our whole life and will to Jesus Christ, we get a hidden life with Christ in God. Then He can speak in our hearts and reveal His will to us. (Col.3:3 & Eph.2:6). And if we love Jesus and do what He speaks in our heart, then He and the Father make their home with us! (Joh.14: 23). Like John we can then say: “Truly, our fellowship is with the Father and the Son.” In this fellowship we learn to know more and more of God’s and Jesus’ thoughts about everything in life! And if we live according to it, we become like Them, because you become like the one whose will you are doing! And They also give us counsel in our practical daily life. And if we believe the Almighty God’s Word and counsel, e.g what is written in Heb.13:5, what on earth do we then have to fear?
The only thing in life that we should fear, is to give in to sin! Then we will lose this life in Christ and this fellowship with Him and the Father! Satan, who came to steal and destroy, wants to steal our life in Christ! (Joh.10:10). But he can only succeed if he can get us to do sin. For if we give in to our own lusts and desires and own will (live according to our sinful tendencies and own earthly thoughts) then our life in Christ will stop. But, if by the Spirit we put to death our own will, lusts, desires, demands and strong opinions (called “the deeds of the body”), then we will live! (Rom.8:13, 14). Then we get more of the life-giving Spirit that was in Jesus, and He will become more alive in us!
Gal.2:20 is then true in our life: “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” The one whose will I do, that one is living in me! And the more I obey Him, the more of His life is revealed though my words and deeds and reactions! If I want to grow in Christ, want to gain more of His life in me, then I should die in a greater degree to my own self-will, my own thoughts and opinions. And in the degree that I die to these things, God makes my spirit alive (then I understand more of what He wants me to do, His will and thoughts). To die is therefore gain! (Phil.1:21).
Paul counted the things that were a gain to him before as rubbish and dung, so that he might gain Christ, gain more of His knowledge (His thoughts), His life and His life-giving Spirit!
In the light afflictions of our daily life – where we face our own will – we can gain an eternal weight of glory! (2 Cor.4:17,18). Then I get more and more on the same wavelength with Jesus and God! But to gain this, our minds should not be taken up with visible things, which are temporal. For example, to be esteemed by people is visible and temporal! Paul counted the things that were a gain to him before as rubbish and dung, so that he might gain Christ, gain more of His knowledge (His thoughts), His life and His life-giving Spirit! Let us pursue this hidden life with Christ in God, and not a temporal, life before the face of man!
Here are things which were said during this session which stuck with me:
“We should not fix our eyes on the things that can be seen, but on the things that cannot be seen! When something like envy, for example, rises up from my flesh (my sinful nature), I will resist it and hate it with everything that is in me! Then I have the invisible before my eyes!”
Claude Kue Kamdem, Bafoussam, Cameroon
“What I saw as gain before, now as loss I see! For the knowledge of my Lord, is so great to me!” Now is a time where we can gain a lot! To die to myself (to my own will and ego and high thoughts about myself) is gain!”
Mark Floor, Vanderbijlpark, South Africa
“There must come a time in our life when we are prepared to die to our own sinful lusts and desires, when Peter Nyangoto with his opinions and preferences and own will must die to all of it! We can long for the life of Christ, but without a death to these things, it is impossible to get it! Life comes forth through death!”
Peter Nyangoto, Kisii, Kenya
“If you know the things, blessed are you if you do them!” Joh.13:17. The greatest is to do the things that we hear every time, to apply them in all our daily circumstances! This is my longing, then I am a disciple of Jesus who is truly blessed!”
Bope Mikobi, Lubumbashi, Congo DRC
“….I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” Joh.10:10. This abundant life we have seen in the church, and this is the life that Paul was gripped of. And he counted everything as rubbish so that he could attain the knowledge of Jesus and could become like Him!”
Richard Savage, Huntworth, England