Welcome to Hustle in Faith. This podcast is dedicated to helping you find your trail to a happier healthier you by discussing topics regarding Christianity, health & wellness, beauty & so much more! I’m your host Tosha Johnson.
This is Episode 85. This is part 3 of 4 in our “ What is the extraordinary life series?” So be sure to go back and listen to the previous episodes and check out the journal I created that inspired this series called Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Women of Faith: A 3 Month Guide to Prayer and Gratitude that is available for sale on Amazon:
Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Women of Faith
Prayer and Gratitude Journal for Men of Faith
Prayer & Gratitude Journal for Adults & Teens
In today’s episode, we are going to discuss the remaining attributes that we must embody in order to position ourselves to live an extraordinary life. We’ve got a lot to cover in this episode so let’s jump right in!
Since many of us are conditioned to see before we believe this wrong mindset has made faith one of the hardest attributes to activate. Due to our lack of faith, many of us never get to experience all the blessings God has in store for us. Reason being, “. . . without faith, it is impossible to please God . . . anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek Him.” (Hebrew 11:6).
Faith means that we are to never let our feelings/emotions control what we believe. Always wanting to see before we believe means that we cannot successfully live the Christian life. If we are waiting to see something before we obey God, then we will never receive all the blessings God is willing to give us because God does not help us until after we put faith into action.
Furthermore, having to see something before we act in faith, is called walking by sight. God has commanded us to “…walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Cor 5:7). Those of us that are walking by sight usually allow our emotions to control our outlook on life.
If we are truly walking by faith, we will not allow our distorted feelings to control our thought life and hinder our actions. Allowing our distorted feelings/emotions to lead our life destroys our faith. All of which derails our relationship with Christ.
Possessing gentleness means that we learned how to be considerate. We treat others the way you would like to be treated (Matt 7: 12-14). We are patient and understanding of others needs. In other words, seek to understand where others are coming from instead of always seeking to be understood. In order to be gentle, we must conquer the concept that not everything is about me, myself, and I.
Now let’s be clear, being gentle does not mean that you become a fool and a doormat for Satan’s workers. We are to NEVER allow others to abuse or misuse us. This includes friends and family members. Gentleness means that we have a balance. We know how to discern people and their motives. We know when to rebuke and when to encourage the behavior of others.
Christ is an excellent example of a person who constantly used gentleness toward others but He was not afraid of rebuking those who needed to be put in their place. Gentleness is about balance, which is wisdom and patience working closely together.
When it comes to forgiveness, many people take Luke 17: 3-4 out of context. We should never forgive someone until they ask for forgiveness. In order to be forgiven of our sins (regardless of what they are) we must repent (Jud 16:25-28). In other words, the offender must apologize first (ask for forgiveness) before he or she is forgiven. This rule, repentance before forgiveness, holds true within the spiritual realm (between God and man) as well as the physical realm (Lk 13:3; Matt 18:15-35).
God is not the author of confusion (1Cor 14:33). He created law and order for everything, even something as simple as forgiveness. This same rule (repentance before forgiveness) holds true for sinners who wish to become members of God’s royal priesthood as well as those who have offended us.
This is why Christ said, “. . . except [you] repent; [you] shall all likewise perish. . .” (Lk 13:3-5; Heb 8:12; Matt 4:17; Rev 2:16; 21-22). In other words, we will not be forgiven (whether it is spiritual or physical) until we apologize (ask for forgiveness).
Based on the aforementioned, those that are blameless in the situation (that the wrongdoing occurred) should not automatically forgive the wrongdoer. The reason God’s law requires one to repent (asking for forgiveness) before he or she is forgiven is because His law works as a two-edged sword (Heb 4:12; Lk 17:3-4; Matt 18:15-17).
God’s law requires repentance before forgiveness because it teaches everyone involved (the wrongdoer, a.k.a. the offender) as well as the innocent person.
The innocent person will learn patience by obeying God’s rule by waiting until the wrongdoer /offender asks for forgiveness. When the wrongdoer asks for forgiveness they are acknowledging the error of their ways, which indicates that they will make a conscientious effort to no longer repeat the offending behavior. Waiting until an apology occurs teaches everyone a lesson (1Cor 11:31; Eph 1:7; 1Joh 1:7-9; 2:1-2; Heb 8:12; Matt 26:28).
I know you have heard the cliché “Not everything that glitters is gold.” Although this is simply a cliché, it has plenty of merit. We need to especially keep self-control in mind when it comes to making decisions. Satan has decorated a lot of landmines to look desirable and harmless. In reality what we see is not all that is to be seen; which is why the cliché “Not everything that glitters is gold” has merit.
Self-control prompts us to stop and think. It keeps us from making rash decisions that can later cause us to be hurt or destroyed by Satan’s landmines. A person with self-control will behave like David. David was constantly seeking God’s advice before he made his move. If we do the same, this will keep us from being blown up by one of Satan’s landmines.
Self-control is needed especially when it comes to our desires. There is nothing wrong with having desires, but we need to exercise self-control so that we can keep these desires aligned with the word of God (Ps 37: 4).
When we don’t exercise self-control over our desires, we’re going to sin. We will place too much importance on obtaining these desires and accomplishments. All of which will push our Source aka God, to the background; instead of in front for our protection. When we don’t let God lead us, we will be destroyed Satan’s landmines.
This is what happened to Esau. Esau over exaggerated his situation and sold his birthright to Jacob for a bowl of soup. He allowed his desire (in this case hunger) to cloud his judgment. If Esau had exercised self-control, he would not have given up the blessings that come with being the firstborn child. Without self-control, we will fail to see the big picture of life.
We will face situations in life that will not make sense. Life is filled with Catch-22s. They will leave us feeling angry and frustrated; especially if we are doing our best to stay aligned with God’s will. In a situation like this, we should go to God and ask Him for the wisdom of Christ and God will grant our request. Again, the only way we can get out of situations is by accessing Christ’s wisdom.
Being able to access Christ’s wisdom is why we need to build up our relationship with Christ. We do this by daily reading and meditating on God’s Word. Through this process we can obtain and maintain our relationship with Christ. Having the wisdom to discern between good and evil will give us peace and prosperity.
Wisdom leads us to the right path. Wisdom that comes from heaven is pure and you will be able to see this attribute in our deeds; which is why Christ said, “. . . wisdom is proved right by her deeds.”
The reason the Bible teaches us that wisdom is more precious than rubies is because this attribute never works alone. Once you get wisdom, she will help ensure that the other attributes we attain will allow us to become like Christ.
Oftentimes, being a Christian will require you to stand alone. If we keep in mind that we are only physically alone and NOT really standing by yourself, will give us the courage we need to win whatever battle Satan send our way (Joh 16:32).
Relying on the concept that God is with us, will help us to obey God’s command to be strong and of good courage. Since God is a loving Father who will never leave us nor forsake us, we have no reason to be fearful or afraid of Satan, his demons and/or their human workers (Deut 31:6). Focusing on the fact that God is with us (Joh 16:32), will have us to be just like Christ who didn’t have a problem confronting His enemies while ‘physically’ standing alone.
Christ didn’t have an issue standing alone because He knew that He was not really alone. Christ knew that God was with Him (Joh 16:32). If we truly believe God the way Christ did, we would be bold like Christ and confront our situations face to face (Prov 28:1). We can obtain this type of courage by daily reading and meditating on the word of God.
In order to have the courage of Christ, we must develop the same type of relationship that Christ has with God. It is Christ’s relationship with God that gave Christ the strength and courage He needed to conquer whatever battle Satan sent His way. By reading and meditating on the word of God, we can have the exact same courage as Christ.
Having courage like Christ will give us the confidence we need to defend and share God’s Word. Like Christ, we will be able to show our courage in a variety of ways. In some cases Christ even physically fought Satan and his workers. If you recall, on one occasion Christ “forcefully” removed a group of demonic workers that had turned the temple of God into a “den for thieves.” These demonic workers were using the house of God for everything but worship. They were gambling and selling things in the temple.
Another way Christ demonstrated courage was when He allowed His silence to do the talking for Him. Instead of answering the scribes and Pharisees questions, Jesus ignored their nonsense altogether and drew on the ground pretending like He didn’t hear them (John 8:8). The mere fact that Christ was able to stay cool, calm and collected when surrounded by an angry mob showed great courage. Those demonic workers tried all sorts of ways to trick Christ into sinning.
In this case (John 8: 1-12), the scribes and Pharisees caught a woman in the act of adultery. They brought her to the temple under the premise that they were trying to keep God’s law. Christ being omniscient knew their real intention was to use this situation as a way to trick Him into making the wrong decision. As I stated before, Christ demonstrated His courage through a variety of ways. Knowing when and not to speak takes an equal amount of courage.
We finally made it through all of Christ’s attributes! In our next episode, we will conclude the “What is the extraordinary life?” series by discussing ways in how we can go about implementing these attributes into our daily lives.
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