Devotionals For Leaders: A Beautiful Collision

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…who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree… —1 Peter 2:24

The cross was not the place where Christ lost but rather won. It was there at the intersection of the Cross where God’s Wrath was met by the powerful blood of His Holy Son and became the Beautiful Collision.

This collision of sin and Savior was not about death but life…life for all. Jesus surrendered and sacrificed Himself to purchase the right to life for all Mankind. This wasn’t a coincidence or a mistake but a well-thought-out plan to redeem and secure Mankind. It was Jesus’ intention all along to die for us and on the cross is where it happened, once and for all, Christ bore up our sins in the ultimate and consummate offering of Himself to his Father.

The Cross was not something that happened to Jesus— He came to die; the Cross was His purpose in coming. He is “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8). The incarnation of Christ would have no meaning without the Cross. Beware of separating “God was manifested in the flesh…” from “…He made Him…to be sin for us…” (1 Timothy 3:16 ; 2 Corinthians 5:21). The purpose of the incarnation was redemption. God came in the flesh to take sin away, not to accomplish something for Himself. The Cross is the central event in time and eternity, and the answer to all the problems of both. Oswald Chambers

Jesus our leader, demonstrates the powerful act of giving Himself to The Father. We will never be able or even asked to give ourself for Mankind. We are not the Saviors (nor should we try to be). But we will be asked to give ourselves fully to the mission and the plan of God. As leaders, it is essential that we remember taking up our cross will cause a collision of sorts in our own lives: relationships, jobs, futures, and even other lives could be at stake based on decisions we choose to make as a leader. So make them carefully, prayerfully and wisely.

Taking up our cross and following Jesus is not about “dying” as much as it is “denying”. In some cases, especially as we see happening around us lately, many people are dying for their faith in Christ. However, the death that Christ calls us to each and every day is a death to self or a self-denial. Perhaps the real collision is the “death to selfie”: all the images and pictures we have in our own minds of all the great things we would accomplish for God and embracing the daily worship of God through “menial” service and love of others around us? Are your dreams for your life the same as God’s? Do you think that Jesus’ death on the cross was a success or failure as perceived by people of His time? The point is that what God may be asking you to do may not make any sense at all to those around you, as was the case for Jesus and His disciples. We must be about obedience not logic or what makes sense.

Philippians 2: 8 And being found in appearance as a man,

    he humbled himself

    by becoming obedient to death—

        even death on a cross!

The Beautiful Collision happens for leaders when we are are able to say “He must increase and I must decrease”, like John said in John 3:30. It’s imperative for leaders to remember that our first task is to please God and then to serve Him and His purposes. This may mean making hard decisions about what to do, where to go, whom to serve and how that serving will be done being that you only have so much time and only one life to give. Jesus gave His life to His Father’s plan and God was pleased with that. As a leader, give yourself to God once again today and allow His plan and your life to collide. Regardless of what happens, your understanding or perception of it all, in God’s eyes, it will be a beautiful collision.

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Quiet Time: Thoughts And Reflections

Quiet Time

. . . present . . . your members as instruments of righteousness to God —Romans 6:13

I’m pretty much bankrupt on every level of life. It doesn’t matter what I work at or even master, my efforts are undeniably short of the perfection that’s needed to satisfy God. The scripture is clear when it says that all have sinned and come short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23) and I make several proofs of that each day. Try as I may to save myself, discipline myself, correct myself, adjusting my mind, thoughts, and way of living, I’ll never be able to completely perfect the life that God desires for me.

The grace and love of God is made manifest through the redeeming work of Jesus Christ on the cross, which completely satisfies God’s requirements for sin and miraculously saves me. I have to live in this reality. Remembering that it’s not about my accomplishments rather it is all Christ accomplished on the cross is what not only gets me through a day but through this life unto the next. What I have to do is to believe the right things. I have to not only take God at His Word but allow God’s Truth to sink deep down into my soul and radically change me.

My theme this year is LEGO, as in the building block. The idea is that in becoming the building that God desires, I have to Let Go and Let God. He is the Master Builder, after all. I cannot hold on to the plans that I have, nor try to construct my own set of blueprints. I cannot pour another foundation and try to build my life upon my own set of spiritual disciplines and “goodness”. Being “holy” through my own efforts leads to spiritual pride and is full of self-satisfaction.

However, being MADE holy is an entirely different thing. Christ is building upon His own foundation. He is tearing down, building up, and restoring things as He desires. He is making me holy as He is holy. Sure I work WITH God as He moves, quickens, convicts and teaches but it is all based on Christ and not my own sense of self-worthiness. I must be deconstructed and Christ reconstructed (John 3:30); there always has to be a letting go in order to take up.

God is constructing a dwelling place for Himself and it is within me. With this being the case, there is no room for any “self”. God wants full residency, not to just be a guest. He wants to have full say in the construction and remodel. All I need to do is comply and enjoy the delight of God in what He is building.

Jesus made an atonement for my sin and now He desires for me to live in complete obedience to His call. As I live out God’s leading in my life, I make the work of Christ evident in my own life. God is glorified in me when I completely obey Him. My obedience reveals my trust in His handiwork and ability to construct a home (life) within me because of the atonement of Christ alone. My efforts as swallowed up in His.

G.Lockhart