Journal Entry ~ 01/01/18

"Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel" (which means, God with us).  - Matthew 1:23

As we welcome the New Year today, and say goodbye to the Christmas season, it’s important we don’t leave the message of this verse behind - God is with us. In these words we find the comfort and the strength of knowing Jesus’ continued presence. But what’s the purpose of His continued presence within you?

The Holy Spirit dwells with you to make you more like Jesus. We don’t have the power to do that on our own, we need the Spirit. No amount of will power behind a New Year’s resolution to be or do something better than we did last year is enough to make it happen. Only the Spirit living inside of you can bring about the changes God wants for you. The Spirit works in us - we become more and more like Jesus, and we reflect His glory to those around us. That’s why God lives in us. His working in us is what gives us the desire to obey and the power to do what pleases Him. We can resolve to be kinder, more loving and patient, we can decide to serve others more and ourselves less, but none of that will stick if we don’t allow God to dwell in and shine through us. 

Our likeness to Christ is not produced by imitation, is produced by inhabitation. It’s the quiet whispers of the Holy Spirit when a friend needs encouragement, it’s the nudging to apologize when we’ve wronged someone, it’s the conviction to share His Hope with a loved one.  It’s the strength to endure a difficult trial, it’s the peace in the face of our greatest fears, it’s the Hope of a bright future. We only need to listen, and then trust God's Spirit to give us his power, love, faith, and wisdom to do it.

Press on ~ you are loved 💗


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