Get to know Your Coach! (2)
A married couple will tell us of the benefit of a Christian counselor. An athlete will talk about the importance of a trainer or a coach. A businessperson will talk about the power of a team. In life, we all need support—and when we get it, it makes all the difference in the world.
As the old self was in Adam, a part of sinful humanity, so now the new self is “in Christ,” a part of regenerate humanity.
This new identity in Christ “is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator.” There is a great deal to unpack in this. The ongoing force of “being renewed” alerts us that this is a process rather than a finished work. Our nature is made new, but we still must work continuously and grow slowly in the effects of this renewal. This is critical. We have been made a completely new person, but it takes the rest of our lives to reorient ourselves to the Christ-ward path
1. The Holy Spirit will lead us into Wholeness.
1. The Holy Spirit will lead us into Wholeness.
He prays for his physical well-being. Specifically, he prays, that you may enjoy good health. Before we make “health” comments, it is worth noting that one may have good health, but fail to respect and enjoy that good health. We would be well advised to consciously appreciate the health we have, give God thanks for it, and seek to sustain it and use it for good.
John says it in a way as to suggest that throughout life’s issues, we need to determine whether our soul is getting along well. The term soul is sometimes used
John prays for positive life circumstances. Life is complicated. It is now, and it was back then. John is showing great balance in his friendship with Gaius. He is letting him know that the church concerns are not his only concerns as they relate to Gaius. All believers need to be careful about expectations that lead to unhealthy over-commitment. The same advice is good for those in full-time ministry. We must establish balance in our lives that allows us to attend to body, mind, soul, and relationships of value, so that all may go well with [us].
Some Christians emphasize love at the expense of truth; others emphasize truth at the expense of love. John was careful to keep love and truth in the right balance
The love of parents causes them to desire that their children have it better than they. They want them to excel in every way. It causes grief and pain to see their children struggle and suffer, while it brings sheer delight to see them succeed and thrive. Christian parents feel that way about the faith and spiritual health of their children. Pastors feel that way about their parishioners and those whom they have led toward Christ. Teachers often feel that way about their pupils. Coaches feel that way about those on their teams. Maybe every Christian would do well to consider a handful of “younger” Christians in the congregation as their “children” in the faith.
2. The Holy Spirit Illuminates what is True
“The Bible without the Holy Spirit is a sun-dial by moonlight” (D. L. Moody).709
A Technology Crisis
I often say to students that we do not have in the world any kind of power shortage. There’s no power crisis. We really have a technology crisis. If we only had the technology to capture the power in lightning, I submit that the power companies would have so much power they would be paying us to take it off their hands. There is no shortage of power. The power that is resident in the lightning that hits the earth would power the entire world easily. There’s a technology crisis. We don’t have the technology to capture lightning bolts.
In the same way, on a spiritual level, we have no power shortage. We have the power of God in us. We have not only the power of these marvelous thunderstorms, but as Paul says in Eph 1, we have the power of God that raised Christ from the dead in us. We don’t have to go anywhere to get it. It’s already within us. It’s in our inner being. The problem is not a lack of power. The problem is a technology crisis. The technology crisis is a lack of faith—a lack of faith to access the power of God that is readily available to us that we might use that power in a way to be channels of bringing God’s kingdom, that through us His kingdom might come and that His will might be done on earth as it is in heaven.
3. The Holy Spirit Expands your Experience of God.
take in with all followers of Jesus the extravagant dimensions of Christ’s love. Reach out and experience the breadth! Test its length! Plumb the depths! Rise to the heights! Live full lives, full in the fullness of God
filled up to all the fullness of God
The Pony Express was a private express company that carried mail by an organized relay of horseback riders. The eastern end was St. Joseph, Missouri, and the western terminal was in Sacramento, California. The cost of sending a letter by Pony Express was $2.50 an ounce. If the weather and horses held out and the Indians held off, that letter would complete the entire two-thousand-mile journey in a speedy ten days, as did the report of Lincoln’s inaugural address.
It may surprise you that the Pony Express was only in operation from April 3, 1860 to November 18, 1861—just seventeen months. When the telegraph line was completed between the two cities, the service was no longer needed.
Being a rider for the Pony Express was a tough job. You were expected to ride seventy-five to one hundred miles a day, changing horses every fifteen to twenty-five miles. Other than the mail, the only baggage you carried contained a few provisions, including a kit of flour, cornmeal, and bacon. In case of danger, you also had a medical pack of turpentine, borax, and cream of tartar. In order to travel light and to increase speed of mobility during Indian attacks, the men always rode in shirt-sleeves, even during the fierce winter weather.
How would you recruit volunteers for this hazardous job? An 1860 San Francisco newspaper printed this ad for the Pony Express: “WANTED: Young, skinny, wiry fellows not over 18. Must be expert riders willing to risk daily. Orphans preferred.”
What God chooses, He cleanses.
What God cleanses, He molds.
What God molds, He fills.
What God fills, He uses.
J. S. Baxter662
Surplus means having more than enough, extra, over the top. Surplus is the space between yourself and your limit. When you reach the limit of your spiritual resources, you will begin to lead out of emotions. This is a sure way to burn out. We lead as spiritual leaders, leading out of our spiritual overflow (see John 7:37-38).