The overall theme for April was to place due reverence and to emphasize the importance and power of the Cross, which Christ bore for our sins at Calvary. It is through our faith in the Cross and Christ’s resurrection, that the foundation of our new life in Christ was laid.
A foundation that can never be replaced by any man-made ideas or theories regarding the true nature and merits of real and lasting salvation from our sins.
Now it is time to move on to more mature things in the Lord, building upon that once forever foundation that Jesus has laid in our lives. It is with this win mind that our Senior Pastor has given the church the theme for the month of May 2017, that of “REACHING HIGHER” this may seem an easy thing to do, but it does require personal commitment of every member in the church and a strong desire to experience more of God, literally stepping out together in our faith that will invariably be stretched at various times.
The theme “Reaching Higher” is applicable not only this month of May, it will as I personally have seen will be another platform to go even further and higher in the ways of the Lord and His will for the Cornerstone Family Church.
An illustration came into my mind when contemplating upon what to share with the church in this letter, it is taken from the Book of Genesis.28:10-22, and centers around the dream that Jacob experienced when having previously persuaded his brother Esau into surrendering his birthright to him for bowl of soup, and then further deceiving his father Isaac into bestowing the fathers blessing upon him, assisted by his mother Rebekah, he is now on the run from Esau’s threat to kill him.
Jacob finds himself alone, makes camp and lays down to sleep and dreams of a stairway reaching from the earth up to Heaven, with Angels moving up and down the stair case.
At the top he sees the Lord, who reminds him that he is also the God of Abraham and Isaac, and gives Jacob assurance of protection, and promises regarding his personal future and the family who will descend from him.
This is God’s grace in action, he does not deserve God’s mercy or favor. But God in His wisdom and foresight has planned to bring a nation of Israel not yet born into being through the family of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
What is the Lord’s revelation to Jacob in the dream of a staircase or ladder reaching from the ground into Heaven and God Himself? Personally believe that the Lord is showing Jacob, the ground on which you are sleeping is your present state.
However My grace is upon you but to get into the Presence of God there are many trials and tests ahead, as you are being shaped into the image I want you to become. Acts.14:22c, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God” The word “tribulations” has several different meanings, possibly the easiest is “deserts” literally dry or difficult times.
Every step you take forward that pleases Me, will take you higher towards Heaven and My Presence. I expect you to keep “reaching higher and higher by faith” to fulfill the promises made to you.
In what I have written there is a principle applicable to ourselves and the church, we need to realize that we have not arrived and the Lord is impressing upon us that He desires us to “Reach Higher” in our church lives and personal commitment, to walk by faith with him into the future.
Jacob did not immediately experience the fulness of God’s plan or blessing for his life, he had to go through many shaping, moulding processes before God could fully bless him and his descendants.
There is so much more one could add to this brief account of only a small part of Jacob’s life, what is particularly noticeable is that in time, his life became totally changed, no longer did God call him Jacob, after Peniel Gen. 32:22-32, his new name was ISRAEL.
Israel has three basic meanings:- a. Prince with God = Positional
- Ruler with God = Spiritual authority
- Soldier of God = Warrior
Closing there are four anchors that are necessary for us to “Reach Higher”
- Strong foundations = Death, Burial, Resurrection and Ascension of Christ.
- Abiding or continuing in Christ. John.15:4-11
- Unity = Psalm.133:1-3 & Ephesians.4:1-3
- Recognize and submit to the Leadership. Hebrews.13:7 & 17
Pastor Terry Brinded