In HOPE

  In HOPE 8.28 

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David Timms  

 


Prayer for Today

Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. I confess too much attachment to the "old me." I admit that I've held too tightly to my brokenness. In this moment--as the first of many--I reaffirm the decadence, spoilage, and blight within me. And I lay my heart afresh before You for Your purifying and transforming work. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Amen.

Hope Happenings

The Londen Institute, in partnership with Christ's Church of the Valley, Peoria, AZ will present a special leadership conference at CCV on October 16-18, 2008. Speakers will include Don Wilson (Senior Pastor, CCV), Kevin Odor (Senior Pastor of Canyon Ridge Christian Church, Las Vegas), LeRoy Lawson (former President of Hope International University), and myself.

For information, contact Jana at jsanders@hiu.edu .

Hope International University
Fullerton  CA  92831

 

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation;
the old has gone, the new has come!
(2 Corinthians 5:17)


Like Him

We must settle for nothing less than transformation.

 

Christian "faith" that consistently fails to touch our anger, lust, despair, jealousy, fear, bitterness, mean-spiritedness, violence, and unrestraint is unworthy of Christ and dishonoring of the Holy Spirit. Unless we grow steadily and measurably in love, we discredit the "new creation" for which Christ died.

 

Spiritual formation begins with experiencing and practicing the Presence of Christ. But it cannot stop at that point. Authentic formation involves heart-change from the destructive habits of the past to "become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust." (2 Peter 1:4)

 

All too often we affirm the foundational teaching of Jesus -- "Love the Lord your God, and love your neighbor as yourself" -- then permit all manner of disunity, gossip, division, conflict, and criticism to pour forth from us and around us.

 

With disheartening regularity, we confuse transformation of the heart with modification of the lifestyle. We honor those who volunteer for service, regularly attend worship, and give generously, while failing to confront deep character flaws. A deacon in the church can be a dictator in the workplace with barely a raised eyebrow among us. "Business is business."

 

But the Kingdom of God has different goals. Specifically, that we be "conformed to the image of the Son" (Romans 8:29) by "the renewing of our minds" (Romans 12:2). Nothing less can be deemed success.

 

Violent peacemaking, angry love, gossiping compassion, arrogant purity, proud humility, and boastful brokenness betray and subvert the Kingdom of God. The incompatible pairings reflect our warped accommodations rather than Holy Spirit transformations.

 

"Like Him" stands as the eternal plan of the Father.

 

In our drive for prominence, dominance, or influence, we reveal the smallness and incomplete formation of our faith. Tragically, we exercise this demonic triumvirate in our marriages, families, and workplaces.

 

This week, as we spend a little more time "with Him" may we also, by His grace and transforming power, become a little more "like Him." We must settle for nothing less. Perhaps then the world will believe.

 

In HOPE --

 

David

 

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You can find back issues of "In HOPE" (2005-2008) at http://www.hiu.edu/inhope/.

David Timms serves in the Graduate Ministry Department at Hope International University in Fullerton, California. "In HOPE", however, is not an official publication of the University and the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Administrators or Board. "In HOPE" has been a regular e-publication since January, 2001.