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grenepages_Ope Rowland THRIVE

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Ope Rowland believes in the ministry of every saint. Hence, he talks and writes about believers finding, grooming and operating in their ministries.

He is the author of the thriving blogs and the books- The Young Christian , Manifestation and The Intimate Life  

the_young_christian_ope_rowland manifestation_ope_rowland the_intimate_life_ope_rowland

 

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Three Audiences

Ope Rowland THRIVE_Three Audiences

Now all of you together are Christ's body, and each one of you is a separate and necessary part of it. 1 Corinthians 12:27 NLT

Christ is the head of the church, which is his body. He is the first of all who will rise from the dead, so he is first in everything. Colossians 1:18 NLT         

Under his direction, the whole body is fitted together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. Ephesians 4:16 NLT

We are his body; Christ is the head. You must continuously be in the body receiving the right nutrient from the head for you to be like Christ. You must belong to his body on a continuous and consistent basis. For your body to look like your head they must keep on cooperating with that head (Colossians 2:9-10, 19).

If what makes Christ must flow to you, you must be connected to that head. It is from him all things flow. If you will have everything that makes Christ, you must remain connected. You must remain in the body.

One of the ways to remain in the body is by making sure that your constant companions are members of the body (2 Corinthians 6:14-16). Your closest pals should not be unbelievers. They should be members of the body. What they carry rubs on you (Proverbs 13:20; 1 Corinthians 15:33)

It is only a function of time, you will become like the person with whom you spend most of your time. You will talk like him and react the way he reacts. So check whom you spend most of your time with. Some relationships might have to be severed. Yes, you might be gaining something from them but you might have to cut it. Their influence over you is not good enough.

If you will be like Christ, ensure you remain in his body, joined to the head and connected to the other members of the body. So do not get tired of fellowshipping with other believers (Hebrews 10:25). They are actually saving you from those things you will be exposed to.

When you partake, you put your life in check. It is easier to know something is wrong or getting wrong when you are with your colleagues who are on the right path. You see better in light than in darkness, so come closer to the light. With who have you joined ourselves? Who has been your companionship?

Some have joined themselves with TV. Little wonder you are who you are because you become a reflection of your fellow members. You have become an extension of those things you have joined yourself.

Do you want to be like Jesus in your heart? Do a review of your companionship. They might be legitimate members of your world but check it that their influence on you is right. You might have the aim to influence them but remember that it is easier to pull down than to pull up.

When Jacob had been in the house of Laban for a while, He longed to leave (Genesis 30:25-43). Jacob confronted Laban and said, “The lord has made you great because I am here with you. Is it not time to fend for my own family?” Laban had an agreement with him that any sheep that is spotted, streaked and speckled is his while the pure whites are for Laban. Jacob took them to the river and striped the bark of the trees. Whenever they were drinking and mating looking at the tree, the babies will be spotted, streaked and speckled.

The genetics there is that you become what you see. What you look at for a long time, you will become it. What you behold with an open spirit you will become. When you walk with God, you discover that your spirit is so open. You will be so light. The person everybody is seeing is gone; he is being killed daily (Colossians 3:5). That body is being mortified. The vessel inside you is only reflecting whatever the spirit is saying. If someone comes near and your spirit receives it, you will imitate it. Your sprit grasps the spirit you behold and reproduce it.

Whenever the sheep saw the tree, they produced the same thing. Jacob selected the strong ones for this purpose and left the weak ones. He was reproducing speckled, spotted and black sheep because they are beholding the tree continuously. They were becoming it. What was not in their gene was what was coming out. He made sure that every time they wanted to mate, they were beholding whatever he want them to look like. What God want you to be like are in the bible. As you keep on beholding him via the word, what is produced constantly in you is Christ life. That is what Jacob did to the sheep.

The flock was looking at the things and it was being transferred into their life. It is not by convection or conduction, this is radiation. There was no contact physically. That is what the spirit of God does in you when you allow him to work. He brings out what is present in the life of Christ and make sure it is present in you.

Jacob did not look for the weak ones but the strong ones for his experiment. He will then set those who have the spirit in them and send them back into the flock, thereby reproducing them when they meet with others. Their interaction makes them too spotted, speckled and black. They joined their body; they mated with those ones that have actually caught the light, those ones that have become spotted, speckled and black. Hence, they produced the results.

You must remain in the body. As long as you keep joining yourself to the body, to people that are getting it right, the same result will be reproduced in your life.

The perfect and mature relationship anyone can have with Christ is that Christ is living in him (Colossians 1:27). Until Christ is living in a person, the relationship between that person and Christ is not complete. The relationship between an unbeliever and Christ is that Christ died for him. Someone who is born again has advanced the relationship. He has moved from ‘Christ died for me’ to ‘I have died with Christ’. The perfect relationship with Christ moves you from been dead with Christ to ‘the life I live is Christ who lives in me’.

If one has not got to this stage where Christ lives through him, such has not matured. The person who is an unbeliever is not yet born let alone maturing while the person who is born again has been born, but has not matured. The stage of maturity is when Christ is the one living inside you. Therefore, your relationship must advance beyond ‘Christ died for me’. It must get to ‘I died with Christ’ and move on to ‘Christ lives in me’, which is the assurance of glory.

The person that Christ lives in is someone who is longing for what pleases Jesus Christ. When you are always interested in what pleases your father, you are living for your father. In addition, your father is the one who is living through you. If you have a friend, and all you do is to try to please that friend, in dressing, eating, lifestyle, your friend is the one living through you; you are not the one living because all you are living is your friend’s life. Therefore, when you are looking forward, always longing for Christ’s pleasure, he is living through you.

Jesus died so that those who live will no longer live for themselves (2 Corinthians 5:15). You are not supposed to be living for yourself again. You are to live for Christ. That is Christ in you. When we stopped living for ourselves, we will start living for Christ. We are to be living for whatever pleases him, for his purpose and for his mandate, which include getting others on board (2 Corinthians 5:18). We are to ensure others too are into this journey of living for Christ so that they can be assured of sharing in his glory.

We show we are not selfish by trying to present everyone perfect in his or her relationship with Christ. We do not want to share this glory alone; we want others to partake with us. We communicate this message of perfection using all wisdom God has given us.

So everywhere we go, we tell everyone about Christ. We warn them and teach them with all the wisdom God has given us, for we want to present them to God, perfect in their relationship to Christ.

Colossians 1:28 NLT

People will be perfected when they are told. It is when they hear about this mystery that they can apply it to their lives but they cannot hear except they are told. Paul was saying we just do not tell everybody in the same way, we use all manner of wisdom. He was not just using the approach of sitting everybody down and preaching to them. He used every possible method to make sure people understand and practice this mystery.

The wisdom is about the power, the energy and the ability God gives you. There are some super human abilities inside of you. There are some energies and power inside of you. Some abilities are lying dormant inside of you but the wisdom is to put them into use. You putting them into use are the wisdom God is giving you.

I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and for the church at Laodicea, and for many other friends who have never known me personally.

Colossians 2:1 NLT

Your Immediate Audience

… I have agonized for you …

Paul presented this mystery to the church in Colossae but he wrote this letter while in prison; he was not in Colossae at that time. The Colossians were his immediate audience and the primary recipients of this letter. Your neighbours are your immediate audience. Your family members are your immediate audience. Your colleagues at work are your immediate audience. Your church members are your immediate audience. Your job is that you must not be selfish with this mystery. You must use all the wisdom God gives you to present everyone in your immediate audience perfect in their relationship with Christ. We are not just talking about unbelievers; believers who are not living for Christ are included. Therefore, you have your job cut out for you. You have a ministry to your immediate audience.

Your Extended Audience

… and for the church at Laodicea …

Paul was also contending to present the Laodicean perfect in their relationship with Christ. There was another church in Laodicea (Colossians 4: 16). Paul’s second audience was the extended one, which goes beyond your natural community. It is the extended one you can access. Thank God for the social media. You now have access to people on several platforms; that is your church in Laodicea. Present each of your online contact perfect in their relationships with Christ using all manner of wisdom God gives you. You have an assignment not just to people in your immediate environment but even to your extended environment.

God bless the social media inventors, they have extended your environment for you. You can be here and reach someone residing in continents apart. You are in Colossae and your Laodicea is online. You can reach them with this mystery. You have a job of extending this mystery by presenting people who are far away physically but you can reach across to them online. Present them perfect in their relationship with Christ. Show them, convince them, proclaim, and tell them, with all the wisdom God gives you how to live in Christ so that they can be guaranteed of sharing in Christ’s glory.

We do not want to go alone to enjoy this glory. Take all your contact and friends on the social media platforms along to partake in this glory. When you get into that glory, you will not be able to Whatsapp those who are not in it. You will not be able to Facebook them. You will not be able to share your pictures and status updates with them. Rather, you invite them now so that you can share the experiences together. You have to work hard to present even all those your extended audience perfect in their relationship with Christ. The perfect relationship with Christ is Christ living in them. You make sure not only you are working on it; they too are working on it.

Your Unknown Audience

… and for many other friends who have never known me personally …

Paul also addressed all those who have never met him. This third audience includes you; you have never met Paul. Paul’s striving is presenting you too perfect in your relationship with Christ via his epistles. Using the entire wisdom God gives you, present the coming generations even those yet to be born perfect in their relationship with Christ. Do something that will present them right with Christ. The likes of Kenyon, Wigglesworth, Finney and Wesley were long dead before we were born but what they did (including their writings) are still presenting us perfect in our relationship with Christ. They are not alive and you have not met with them, yet they are presenting you. That is the third category of audience; doing a work that outlives your generation.

Someone brought the gospel to this country, what he did then is still presenting you perfect in your relationship with Christ. If they never used that wisdom God gave them to establish the gospel in this part, we might not be born again yet. However, they preserve generations and ensured that they will be perfected in their relationships with Christ with what they did with the wisdom God gave them. Your job is not only to the people in your Colossae and Laodicea; it includes people you have never met and will never meet you in generations to come.

People that will be born in another century will never meet you; you can still meet someone you have not met before as long as you are still living. You can meet in the plane one day on your way to China and the person refer to your expressed wisdom he had encountered. However, when you are dead, will someone come to stand by your grave and wake you up to comment on or acknowledge that wisdom? There are songwriters you never met alive but their songs are still perfecting you. You have never met Fanny Crosby, yet her hymns are still presenting you perfect.

You have a work to do for your immediate audience, you have a work to your extended audience and you have a work to do for the generations to come. That is how not to be selfish and live for Christ. When you live for Christ, concerned about what pleases him and what he is interested in, then he is living in you. When your interest is his own, he is living in you.


 

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