Like you, I continually hear ads for Lucinda Bassett’s program and the “Midwest Center for Stress and Anxiety.” I admit I am skeptical of ads like hers. Now please understand, I am not against seeking help when you need it, but when they hide the price, and you eventually discover you have several extra payments you were not expecting, it adds up.
Then when you order her system, you end up getting a set of DVDs for $14.95 and several audio tapes. You also get a bill for 8 payments of $64.94 (almost $520) — which they never told you about. When you dig more, you discover that there have been several lawsuits concerning the deceptive billing and advertising. Wow! All that for people simply trying to find help!
So does it “work”? As one client said, “Yes, it works well for her – she’s making money on that stuff.” So clearly it help her out of her depression. Does it work for others? The answers range from “never” to “sometimes” to “always.” That my friends is sad.
So what do we, as disciples of Jesus Christ, do when we are suffering? Maybe it is very traumatic conditions and ailments. What do we do to get us out of our miserable lives of guilt, fear and depression? What will it take for us to see there is a far more glorious life waiting for us?
Paul said some pretty interesting things in his letter to the church in Colossae. After his general greeting, he assured them he was praying for them, then goes on to describe what he asks the Lord to do for them:
We [Paul and Timothy] continually give thanks to God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, as we are praying for you . . . that He will fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. [Now here is the key for you] For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
Wow! What a prayer! Our God has rescued us! It doesn’t say He will rescue us, but that He has rescued us. It doesn’t come when you give all your money to the church; it doesn’t come when you walk the streets and share messages with everyone you meet on the street. No! All those things are nice, but He has already rescued you!
But as with everything in His Kingdom, you must receive it. Did you have to climb any mountains to receive the Holy Spirit? No! You believed, confessed and received. Do you want this glorious, liberated life? Do you now believe it is your inheritance? Do you now believe God wants desperately for you to have it? Then accept it by faith and move into it! Claim it as your own! Paul says, “Haven’t you suffered enough? Haven’t you learned your lesson yet?” Aren’t you sick and tired of living a life of fear and mental torture? Haven’t you yet learned there is a better way?
Do you remember that passage in Galatians that says, ” the righteous will live by faith“(Galatians 3:11)? That is what I am saying. You simply put your faith in what God said He would do for you. This liberated life of righteousness, joy, and peace in the Holy Spirit is a gift. You can’t work for it.
The greatest joy is when you discover you are no longer “guilty” before God. It is the joy of knowing your faith makes you right in His presence. Read the fourth chapter of Romans:
“Blessed and happy and to be envied are those . . . whose sins are covered up and completely buried. Blessed and happy and to be envied is the person of whose sin the Lord will take no account nor reckon it against him” (Romans 4:7-8 Amp.).
Abraham became the father of nations simply because he took YHWH at his Word. He could have doubted, but he would have lost everything.
“He did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, 21 being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised . . . The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone . . . but also for us. . . who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead” (Romans 4:20-24).
We believe him to forgive us so we can receive our Salvation; we must believe that he will keep us strong and able to receive more. The power that saves us keeps us! The faith that brought Christ into our lives keeps us from falling. The world around us is crying for us to be strong; strong in conviction, strong to lead, to stand, to offer them a message of hope and joy.
“Since we have been justified through faith, let us have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And let us boast in the hope of the glory of God” (Romans 5:1-2).
Oh, don’t pass this by. Allow it sink into your spirit and consume every waking thought and be carried on every word you speak!
With these Morning Messages, I take you on guided tours to, as Bunyan described, the Celestial City. At times we linger at corners familiar and unseen. And explore the depths of our faith along the way.
The trail is long, but there’s no hurry. Though we do need to stock up on supplies for the way, and that’s where I need your help. If you enjoy these messages, please consider becoming a contributing member of this tour group. It will be very much appreciated.