Who among us would willingly love people who made no qualms in seeking to destroy us? How many of us can forgive someone who does not ask for forgiveness; instead, they spit on your face and hurt you with their filthy words and actions? Picture this: An angry mob is coming right at you---armed with all kinds of weapons and boldly chanting, "we want you dead!" Would you do what Jesus did? Would you pray to the Father to forgive them of their deception and face death without an ounce of hatred and bitterness? You see, it's easy to make certain sacrifices for those we call friends but for our enemies, why would we? Truthfully, without Jesus in us, it's impossible to do! I submit to you that our Savior had His eyes fixed on the Father as He went through the Cross. Jesus knew the Father and the Father knew Him. John 1:1-5 tells us, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." Jesus is the Word of God! Therefore, He was in the beginning and He knew the will, purpose and plans of the Father for humanity. He also knew what the shedding of His blood would do to bring humanity back to the glorious presence of the Father. He had His eyes on the mission at hand and that's to bring everyone who trust (faith, believe) in Him to salvation and present them faultless before the throne of the Father in heaven. Because Jesus endured, He won the victory and He received the prize! Philippians 2: 5-11 tells us, "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, existing in the form of God, did not consider equality with God something to cling to, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to death—even death on a cross. Therefore God exalted Him to the highest place, and gave Him the name above all names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Jesus endured all kinds of pain and suffering. He took every accusation and condemnation. He carried the full weight of our Sin, nailed it at the Cross and died without resentment till He rose again from the dead completing His mission. In the eyes of man, he died a shameful death but in the eyes of the Father, He was brilliant! Through faith in what Jesus accomplished at the Cross, I have something to look forward to while I am living and breathing in this world.
As a child of God, the Holy Spirit lives inside of me and is transforming me daily to the likeness of my Savior, Jesus Christ! Like all of our brethren, I have a long way to go, my friends! We have so much evil in this world today (as we witness the unfolding of God's Word in these Last Days). In our own strength, it's impossible to love like Jesus especially in a world that strategically seeks to destroy us. But when we allow the power of the Holy Spirit to lead us (the Body of Christ), we can do what Jesus did---to love our enemies! As we go through trials daily (be it personal, national or global), let us remember how Jesus carried out His mission by fixing His eyes on the prize. 2 Timothy 4:5-8 tells us of the attitude we should maintain in order to win our race in this life. It says, "But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness is laid up for me, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but to all who crave His appearing." The Word of God revealed to us where we're going when this earthly life is over. There's a prize (reward) waiting for us! Having an "eternal perspective" has radically changed my priorities in this world. I'm not here to gain the world but to serve the purpose and will of my Father in heaven. Between a temporary life on earth and an eternal life in the presence of Jesus Christ in His kingdom---I choose the latter.
For this Card, I used an image from our sponsor this week, Graciellie Design, called "Simple Wisdom" which I colored using my Touch Five markers. The base of the card including the attached butterfly border (from Sizzix) is 5.5 inches square. I used several clear stamps from Stampabilities, Hot off the Press and Glitz Design for the backgrounds and sentiments. The tiny butterflies were stamped using Stampin' Up stamp and fussy cut. I added some gems to the butterflies from Imaginisce as well as glitters (Stickles-Crystal) to the center of the flowers. Finally, I stitched over the panel of the Scripture Word Art. Pretty happy with the result.
CHRIST DIED FOR US CARD
CHRIST DIED FOR US CARD LAYERS
CHRIST DIED FOR US CARD INSIDE
CHRIST DIED FOR US CARD WITH ENVELOPE-BOX
This Card is entered into the following Challenges:
House that Stamps Built---ATG
Paper Shelter---Add Some Metal (Nail head gems on small butterflies)
Simon Says Stamp---ATG
Crafty Addicts---ATG/All Loved Up
A Bit More Time to Craft---ATG
Create and Inspire---ATG
Not Just Cards---ATG
Make sure you join us at WAW Challenge. You can use the free Word Art in your creation and link it to our Challenge but is not a requirement. As long as it's family-friendly, uplifting and inspirational, you can enter several times in two weeks. A great prize awaits our winner from our wonderful sponsors---Graciellie Design (Digis), Crafty Individuals (UK 20 GC) and a Clear Stamp Set from our very own, Karen Letchworth. So excited to see what you come up with. Anyway, meditate on the goodness of the Lord and rely on His promises. Expect only wonderful things from Him each day. His presence in us enables us to do the impossible.