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I belong to heaven so time to act that way

May 7, 2010

Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News.  Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. This will be a sign to them that they are going to be destroyed, but that you are going to be saved, even by God himself.  For you have been given not only the privilege of trusting in Christ but also the privilege of suffering for him.  We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it. Philippians 1:27-30 (New Living Translation)

Wow this is massively challenging to me right now!  I must live as citizen of heaven, conducting myself in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. The bit that really hit home was the phrase ‘citizens of heaven’ the challenging idea that my primary citizenship isn’t Australian or British but of heaven.  The greek behind it is politeuomai which talks of how I order my life, how I conduct myself and behave. So I should seek to act in a way that brings glory to God, that tells the story of Jesus not of me.  And this is the key distinction, is that I live my life with the intention of serving, of loving, of doing what is right as a Christian, rather than pursuing my own selfish ambition or goals.  And this is big for me, really big.  I am at a crossroads where I can so easily chase after self gratification, make my focus my own needs, but through this reading and other recent reflections God is reminding me to remain focused as best I can on Him, on serving Him.

And I discovered that ‘citizens of heaven’ also can mean to govern a city or state, that is, to be involved in running a society.  And that takes order, hard work; it involves careful thought and an awareness of what people within the society need.  It takes planning and intentionality, not something that will just happen.  And that speaks volumes to me right now, I need to make the time to learn God’s way, through going deep into the Word, through prayer, reading books and through conversations with others.  But the key is I need to make the effort – like I am running an organisation, I need to plan ahead think through what areas I want to learn about and then take the time to pray, to research and find the answers as best I can.

And so I just loved reading all the suggestions as to what I can teach about on this blog going forward, so many amazing topics!! (Click here to check them out.) So thanks for those who posted suggestions!  Once I have completed working through Philippians I will work out a teaching plan based on your suggestions.

God bless ya!


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Yahweh’s Yarn in a Year : 1 year Bible reading plan

The portions for the next couple of days are: Mark 13-14; 2 Corinthians 1-3; Exodus 17-20  (I don’t post on Saturday hence extra reading!)

To access the complete plan for the year click here

From → Uncategorized

  1. Sister Pam OP permalink

    I really appreciate this passage. The Philippians were quite full of themselves since they were a Roman colony. One of the challenges Paul had was changing the mindset of the people to consider themselves Christian citizens first and Roman citizens second. That same challenge exists for us today. Sometimes, nationalism becomes a false god leading to conflict and strife.

  2. Joanne Heatley permalink

    Thanks Mark for your thoughts, for posting these daily devotions which help draw us deeper into God.
    I pray that the Lord help us keep our focus on Him and live a life worthy of the calling we have been given.

  3. Sherry lee Bradley permalink

    This is such a inspiration of our daily walk with the Lord Jesus christ!

  4. Karen - Omaha, Ne permalink

    Thanks Mark for all your comments and your commitment to God and His leading. These words are awesome to me. Citizens of Heaven…Don’t be intimidated in any way by your enemies. We may not be in Heaven yet, but we are her citizens. Yeh. What a thought. Representatives of our High Calling through Jesus Christ our Saviour, Redeemer and Lord. It simply knocks my socks off. Have a Good and Blessed Day.

  5. Rose Reese permalink

    Thank you Mark for the reflections you give on each passage. It is a big help to me every day.

  6. Marla permalink

    Thanks, as always Mark, for you daily reflections. I’m often confused about what is my own selfish ambition, and what is that of Gods. Maybe it’s both sometimes, I’m not sure. Some days, hour to hour, I will change my mind on what is God’s will, and what is my will. I try to stay focused in His word and diligent in prayer, and still I struggle with this! Any suggestions? Blessings.

  7. marti permalink

    Thank you Lord for sending Mark to all of us. Thank you Mark for your daily devotions and postings. I get so much out of them. It really does get me Deeper Into Gods Word. After reading each post and following the scriptures along with them and meditating on my day, I find I do have a more positive day and more positive way of thinking. You are wonderful through God’s work. Thank You!

  8. Mary (South Africa) permalink

    I LOVE the flag! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if that flag flew in all countries and we were all united? Maybe one day……

  9. Lydia Reyes permalink

    I am so thankful for the hope that Jesus gives us in knowing that there is a better place for all who believe and trust in him. There are many leaders around the world that people put to much emphazise and trust on, but God’s people are so blessed in knowing the true leader of the universe and the hope that we have in knowing that thru the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ we have a heavenly home waiting for us. I pray that God will give us the strength and endurance to get thru any attacks that come our way. May the Holy Spirit be the guiding light in our lives and may we all bear much fruit here on earth and then celebrate in our heavenly Kingdom. Amen.

  10. Brenda Beasley permalink

    this bible verses helps me to learn about jesus christ god will say u better read my words. god is love, faith, and hope. 1 cor. 13:18-20 saids that. god bless

  11. Really enjoy your reflections, Mark. I am so glad you go back to our earliest translations to dig into deep meanings of original Greek. I try to do the same also in my studies and find the Holy Spirit gives great understanding through this. The post you made on deaing with rude people is one of my favorites. What a challenge.

  12. Mike permalink

    My question & opinion is similar to Marla. Any sugestions? thanks…

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