Keeping Calm and Collected

It’s in the line of duty that calmness and withitness are required.  It is just when you are lapsing in your focus, just when you are starting to become self-indulgent, that the need for self-discipline is paramount.

It’s in the gaps, in the 10 minuteses and the quarters of an hour, that the greatness of the individual achievement is measured.  What appears to be an insignificant habit, over the course of many days, becomes a troublesome hurdle and eventually an overwhelming millstone that you could collapse under.  What initially was just a pleasant thought, becomes a habit often indulged, and all too soon a vice that has you round the throat.

 

It’s only when you know that you are starting from a place of total freedom and complete righteousness, that you ever feel you have a hope of allowing the Holy Spirit to one day – through His grace – complete that work of sanctification and fire in you.

Reading the book of Galatians through different eyes is becoming a life-changer for me.  Time and again I have confined myself under the law.  But I am not under the law!  I am in Christ, clothed with Christ, baptised with Christ, buried with Christ.  There is no teacher nor student in Christ, no male nor female, no addicts or failures, but all are one in Him.  Christ lifts us up to such a height.  And Christ also levels us all out, because He became so humble.

What begins in Galatians as being a departure from the gospel of grace, leads us back to the highway of the fruit of the spirit: against such things there is no law.  Love.  Joy.  Peace.  The unearthly, lofty, inexplicable waves of grace alone that vibrate through us and signify to us the guarantee of the HOly Spirit’s presence.  Patience.  Kindness.  Goodness.  The outworking of His moment by moment presence in our lives that spills out in our words, in our looks, in our actions to those around us.  Faithfulness.  Gentleness.  Self-control.  The Father-like qualities that equip us to be what He wants to be to His children around us.  There are not many fathers, but we are called to be fathers, forgiving, waiting for the Prodigals, biting back the resentment and the hurt, the indignity and the abuse, and gently whispering their names, accepting and loving them.

Stand fast in the freedom by which He has made you free. Don’t be entangled again with a yoke of imprisonment, of shackles, of chains.  Stand fast.

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About stayingfaithful

I am looking for anything that relates to life and to a fuller life. I am bored by the normal and the natural and interested in the supernatural. There must be more than this. We were put on this earth for more than a nine to five prison, as someone said a few years ago.
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4 Responses to Keeping Calm and Collected

  1. Mark L says:

    Great stuff Ben. Looking for a church in New York this morning.

  2. Claire Watkins says:

    Thats good Ben. Like you say, His grace & freedom is so great! I read this today: ‘God saves us by grace, transforms us by grace, sustains us in our difficulties by grace, calls us to our unique ministries by grace, endows us with the gifts we need for that calling by grace and makes our service to Him acceptable by grace’!

  3. benleney says:

    Appreciate your comment and the powerful quotation Claire. Grace is the most significant word in the Bible. It flows down from the throne of a holy, just and loving God as pure charity. God cannot be compelled to do anything, but he chooses to do so by sheer grace. The initiative is from God, and has always been from God. He chose us. Thomas Goodwin said “Grace is more than mercy and love; it greatly adds to them.” Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

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