Now More Than Ever
Lisa Cooke

Now More Than Ever by Lisa CookeNow more than ever, it is imperative to have “the power of an endless life” (Hebrews 7:16) at work within us. With headlines bringing news of pervasive distress, terrorist activities, and countless other current events, we feel the urgency to ever be pressing toward the prize of the high calling in Christ Jesus. This pursuit, and the benefits we receive, will enable us to be the salt and light in this world that God has called us to be.

With all the pressures of life, of ministry, how can we find the strength needed for that constant forward momentum in the Spirit? Grace is the ready answer, and rightly so. Grace is God’s empowerment in our lives enabling us to do His will. But is grace at full operation in our lives? Can we avail ourselves to more of this holy power so willingly given to us by Jesus, the One who upholds the universe by the word of His power? (Hebrews 1:3).

I know I benefit from daily reminders of all that my inheritance in Christ has provided for me while I live on this earth. I have to “put ‘me’ in remembrance” (2 Peter 1:12) so to speak, so that I can consciously walk in the promised provisions. The distractions of life can divert our attention away from our “in Christ” privileges and it is our responsibility to remind ourselves of these holy facts.

Here are a few things to encourage us as we remember His Word to us.

The greatness of His power toward us who believe is immeasurable, or exceeding, as the King James Bible puts it. Our enemy would have us believe that we don’t have enough of what it takes to do what God has called us to do, but Ephesians 1:19 tells us otherwise. God’s power toward us is as infinite as He is.

It can be difficult to appropriate something so vast that we can’t get our heads around it, so God has given us the “Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him” (Ephesians 1:17). God provides us with both His power and the ability to receive that power and in this we can take great comfort.

2 Timothy 1:7 is such a familiar verse that it can be easy to not receive the full import of what it says. “…for God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” God gives us what we need to be His witnesses in this world, and here three things are delineated.

  • Power, which is always an attribute of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8)
  • Love which is a fruit of the Spirit
  • A sound mind, also rendered self-control, another fruit of the Spirit with which we are able to serve the Lord well.

Matthew Henry says of this verse, “The Holy Spirit is not the author of a timid or cowardly disposition, or of slavish fears. We are likely to bear afflictions well, when we have strength and power from God to enable us to bear them.”

In a time when the spirit of fear is ramping up its energies, we can instead choose to walk in the properties of the Holy Spirit given freely to us—power, love and a sound mind. “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25).

2 Peter 1:5-7 includes both self-control and love as attributes of the life of faith, and in verse 8 it says “For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” We can “walk worthy of God” (1 Thessalonians 1:12) as we receive His power, love, and a sound mind.

So in these days in which we live, what can we expect of God as we endeavor to live out His will as salt and light (Matthew 5:13-14)? Psalm 68:35 tells us “Oh God, you are more awesome than Your holy places. The God of Israel is He who gives strength and power to His people.” The power from which we live is not self-generated power, but the power of His grace that comes from living in fellowship with God. Now more than ever the condition of our relationship with the Lord must be such that we are consistently receiving those “good and perfect gifts” He so longs for us to enjoy.