STUDY 2 TONIGHT! LIVING OUT GOD’S GRACE

th2DU3XXH0Hi girls! A fresh new week is upon us! I hope and pray you have had a refreshing half term.

Tonight is a good way to get back into the swing of routine, school, and see your sisters in Christ…and most importantly, to take time to be reminded of Christ’s love for you through His Word.

WHERE: Corsham Baptist Church Hall

WHEN: TONIGHT, 30 October, 7:30PM 

Picture1Come with great expectations to be nurtured with food, fellowship, and the WORD!

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EMBRACE HIS IDENTITY IN ME

1cc19207f9a7be506aef9a6dac205b3b“Who am I?

Am I what I do?

Or am I what I have achieved?

Am I the things I’ve done right? Or am I defined by the things I’ve done wrong?

Am I a saint? A sinner? What about what others think of me?
Who am I?
How I identify myself determines how I approach life.
If I am what I do, I will always need to do more and achieve more to find my value. If I am what others say, I’ll always try to please people instead of my heavenly Father.
But if I listen to who GOD says I am and embrace His identity in me, I’ll find the freedom to live out all He has planned for me. And when I see myself the way GOD sees me, I walk with confidence, because I trust the ONE who answers the question, Who am I?” Cleon Alleyne

So think about this:

Are you ready to embrace your True Identity as a Child of God?

STUDY 2: GROUNDED IN GRACE-EMBRACING OUR NEW IDENTITY in CHRIST – Now Available

th2DU3XXH0Hi girls!

The next bible study is now online on this website and there are hard copies at CBC and COTG. Especially with half term fast approaching, I got them out earlier than usual so that you will have time to meet with your study buddy!

As we study what it is to live out God’s grace in our lives, we are focusing on how important it is to be grounded in His grace as we embrace our new identity in Christ. We can’t embrace it if we don’t truly understand the implications when we became Christians or as I like to say, followers of Christ.

Have a blessed week,

Kathy xo

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IDENTITY IN CHRIST

identity-300x246In the current climate of our culture and society, an ongoing challenge is becoming more prevalent:
IDENTITY- Who am I?

As followers of Christ, Scripture teaches us that our identity is IN Christ. “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT I am realizing how crucial it is to understand this as we “live out God’s grace” in our lives.

The following is an excerpt taken from Jerry Bridges book, The Discipline of Grace. It illustrates our new identity and new status when we become followers of Christ:

“During the long years of the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union, a Russian air force pilot flew his fighter plane from a base in Russia to an American air force base in Japan and asked for asylum. He was flown to the USA where he was duly debriefed, given a new identity, and set up as a bona fide resident of the USA. In due time he became an American citizen.

The Russian pilot’s experience illustrates to some degree what happened to us when we died to sin and were made alive to God. He changed kingdoms; he was given a new identity and a new status. He was no longer a Russian; he was now an American. He was no longer under the rule of what was then an oppressive and totalitarian government. Now he was free to experience all of the advantages and resources of living in a free and prosperous country.

This former Russian pilot, however, was still the same person. He had the same personality, the same habits, and the same cultural patterns as he did before he flew out of Russia. But he did have a new identity and new status. As a result of his new identity and status as a citizen in a free country, he now had the opportunity to grow as a free person, to discard the mind-set of someone living under bondage, and to put off the habit patterns of a person living under the heel of a despotic regime. Furthermore, as a benefactor of US government’s intelligence establishment, he was furnished all the resources needed to make a successful transition to an American citizen.

In effect, this Russian pilot “died” to his old identity as a Russian citizen and was “made alive” in a new identity as an American citizen. As an American, all the resources of our government were at his disposal to become in fact what he has become in status. But this could not have happened without first changing his status.

We we as believers died to sin, we died to a status wherein we were under the bondage to the tyrannical reign of sin. At the same time, we were granted citizenship in the Kingdom of God and through our vital union with Jesus Christ, were furnished all the resources we need to become in fact what we have become in status.”

th2DU3XXH0When our identity is in Christ, it not only influences our status, but our whole being. Having this new identity given us, it calls us to a new mentality. Ponder that thought! More next week….

So girls, this next week, remember who you are!

Love, Kathy

WHAT IS YOUR MOTIVATION?

Kathy Larkman

Kathy Larkman, contributor for today’s post

“Whatever we do, it is because Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for everyone, we also believe that we have all died to the old life we used to live. He died for everyone so that those receive His new life will no longer live to please themselves. Instead, they will live to please Christ, who died and was raised for them.” 2 Cor 5:14-15 NLT

When I read the above passage of scripture, I realize how counter-cultural Paul’s motivation in life comes from. And as followers of Christ, this is the Christian DNA we need to encourage as we grow as His children. Sometimes I find it difficult to be motivated to clean the house, or love difficult people, or serve at the church. That’s because I can’t in my own strength. The gospel of Jesus’ love changes that.

Paul’s words above tells the Corinthian church and US why he behaves the way he does. Paul explains to them that he is working by God’s economy; Christ’s pattern and not the world’s. But what is Paul’s bottom line? His motivation? It is not because of a theory, not because of fear of judgement, not because of duty, but because of Christ’s love. That’s why Paul no longer lives for himself but for Christ. His perspective is totally changed. Paul can’t do this within himself. How does he do it? “He says, I am compelled, I am constrained,(held together and held in and held completely) I am controlled, I am made to press on by Christ’s love!” This is a love which outweighs all other loves known to the human race. It is a love that changes everything. the-love-of-christ-compels-us-5a68e9edbee14b48baecfa30750ce378It is a love which gives people the power and grace to face things and do things they wouldn’t have done otherwise.

Let me ask some questions for us to ponder in our hearts:
On those battle weary days, do you find yourself living by your feelings as your final authority instead of what you know to be true about God’s love through Christ? Has the gospel lost its power and meaning in your life? Do the world, your flesh and Satan pull you down at times so that you lose sight or doubt God’s love in Christ…. which then dominoes into questioning why you are a follower of Christ in the first place?
You know, I could easily say yes to all of these questions at different points in my life. And I would guess that most of you have as well. We may feel this but we must not stop there. Our Lord wants to draw us from that place. And if you are in this place of struggle right now, Our Lord wants to gently lead you back into the safety of HIS COMPELLING LOVE of the Gospel.

Let’s pray for one another and ask the God from scripture to “pour out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit.” And He will. More and more, Christ will be the motivation behind why you get up in the morning, why you clean your house, why you serve in the church, why you love difficult people. The list goes on. We can’t do this apart from God’s gospel grace and love for us.
But if we are motivated more and more by Christ’s love for us, our joy will expand while we live for Christ counter culturally and in God’s economy! Yay!