Updated: Dec 30, 2022
Each verse, chapter, passage, and page of the Bible is drenched in wisdom and vision. The story of our Creator and Sustainer wrapped together with the history and life lessons of those who came before. I was talking with my dad the other day and I was reminded of what Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 2:15,
"Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and those who are perishing. "
The passage continues by telling us that to those perishing the fragrance is as dreadful as the smell of death and destruction. However, to those who are being saved the smell is like a life-giving perfume. The fragrance is full of life for all who smell it. Oh, what a difference an open and available heart makes friends, The next chapter is loaded, but I would love to share a few verses with you. Starting with verses 1-3,
"Are we beginning to praise ourselves again? Are we like others, who need to bring you letters of recommendation, or who ask you to write such letters on their behalf? Surely not! The only letter of recommendation we need is you yourselves. Your lives are a letter written in our hearts; everyone can read it and recognize our good work among you.
Pay close attention to these next verses,
Clearly, you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This "letter" is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts."
Our lives are like a letter written within the heart open for everyone to read. Showing the work of Christ within our lives. It is important to take note of what Paul writes in the second half of the above passage. You, yourself are a letter written by Christ showing the results of the ministry and work of Christ. With an open heart the truth of who our God is can and will shine through us.
The next two verses (4-5) are a beautiful reminder that it is not by our strength or our drive that any of this is possible. Quite the opposite really, it is only in and through Christ that we are able to do any of this. Pay close attention these verses.
"We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. It is not that we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God."
We are not qualified by ourselves, but God is our qualification and our help. He is our strength and our shield. He is before all things and He comes behind. There is an old saying, "God doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called". Now I'm not sure where that saying came from, but I will say this. If you look back throughout the pages of the Bible, in story after story you will see that none of the people God chose to use were qualified when He chose them. He used them and gave them the words and knowledge needed for the time they were in.
He gave them courage in the face of fear, and joy in the face of sorrow. He became their shield and strength and walked with them every step of the way, just as He is still with us today. I love what verses 16 -17 of this chapter tells us,
"But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. For the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom."
There is freedom in Jesus friends! Our God is merciful and kind, and His love for us will never fail or waiver. In His presence there is healing, joy, deliverance, and freedom. There is no one else like our God and His mercies are new each and everyday.
I challenge you the leave your heart open and available friends. Be willing to answer the call of God on your life and watch what happens next.
Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God, life-giving and beautiful.
Much love friends,