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9 Fruits of the Holy Spirit (9) Fruit of Gentleness
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쏝ut the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Gal. 5:22-23 ...
       
 
  
 

A Life with No Regrets

Manmin News   No. 112
8200
February 17, 2008


"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing" (2 Timothy 4:7-8).

Each individual is given only one lifetime. Time cannot be turned back and each of us is responsible for the life we have led. In reflecting upon their days past, most people say, "Life is truly meaningless" instead of boasting, "I've led an indeed worthwhile life." A child of God, however, cannot live a life of regrets. He must not only be able to confess in gratitude, "I have done my best," but also be recognized by God Himself, "You have indeed lived a good life." Only when we live such a life can we be a blessing onto ourselves and show grace and give life to countless others.

1.Solomon Confesses of the Vanity of Life

As the king of a prosperous and powerful nation upon which God poured His blessing, Solomon enjoyed great wealth, fame, and authority. He possessed unprecedented wisdom and boundless knowledge and built splendid palaces, gardens, and orchards. King Solomon also had many beautiful wives and concubines, and enjoyed all sorts of pleasures of this world, including fine food and exquisite clothes (1 Kings 8~10).
However, Solomon writes in Ecclesiastes 1:2, "Vanity of vanities. Vanity of vanities! All is vanity." Despite all the riches, the fame, and the power at his disposal, there was a longing sense of emptiness in his heart that could not be filled. Man cannot be satisfied only with fleshly things because he has been created in God's image and set in his heart is eternity (Ecclesiastes 3:11). God tells us in Ecclesiastes 12:13, "The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person." Without the keeping of God's commandments, no amount or degree of fleshly pleasures can give man the true satisfaction and peace in his heart. Furthermore, no remarkable achievements on his part can prevent man from regretting before God's judgment without his having kept God's commandments.

2.Leading a Life Worthwhile and with No Regrets

a)One must zealously run the race with an ardent love for God.
A person who has in earnest fathomed and experienced God's love will not hesitate to give everything he has to God because he knows that God's grace and love cannot be exchanged with anything from or in this world. Even after having offered to God everything he owns, such an individual only ponders what else he could give God. We see time and again people investing every aspect of his life only to taste regret instead of satisfaction. In the case of King Solomon, only regrets and despondency remained in his heart as he gradually fixed his eyes on the world and indulged himself in the pleasures of this world despite receiving the boundless love of God.
As the apostle Paul left behind his family, knowledge, fame, and wealth and only chose God, however, he found from God great love. As an apostle wielding great authority of the Word and manifesting God's power, Paul was the subject of love and reverence of the countless. Convinced of "the crown of righteousness" prepared for him in the heavenly kingdom, Paul was always filled with gratitude and joy despite the afflictions he faced. Here, "the crown of righteousness" does not merely refer to a crown; Paul was promised, New Jerusalem, the most glorious dwelling places in all of heaven (please refer to The Measure of Faith for additional information), and will receive the most magnificent rewards given to the most precious of all the saved people.
Even the people in this world often say, "Life is but a short dream." After closing out this short life, everyone will either end up in heaven or hell. How tragic would it be if one ends up in hell even after enjoying and indulging in only the best of this world? It will be embarrassing and disheartening if a person just barely receives salvation. Yet, if an individual zealously runs the race with an ardent love for God, he will not only end up in heaven but also receive God's answers and blessings to his prayer and desires of the heart on earth. This is the surest way to living a life with no regrets.

b)One must accomplish the perfect heart.
"Accomplishing of the whole heart" refers to the casting off of all sin and evil and filling the heart with the truth. The surest piece of proof from such people is the fact that the words of their mouth are perfect. When their hearts are filled with the truth, they will utter only the truth; when their heart becomes holy, their words will also be holy.
Proverbs 22:11 reminds us, "He who loves purity of heart And whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend." The mouths of God's children cannot utter words that are useless, vain, and complaint in nature but must always offer expressions of gratitude, praise, and confessions of faith. When our hearts and lips become whole God will walk alongside us always and be in charge of every affair of our lives.
When I first came to believe in God and understand His grace, I had no choice but to love Him above all else. I wholly obeyed any commandment God gave me and as I cast off every trait and element of evil, I could become sanctified. God would then always return His love in greater portions than what I had offered Him. He was always in charge of my life and each time I obeyed His will, God allowed me to bear many fruit and magnify Him without restraint.
Such blessings cannot be brought forth by man's diligence and effort alone. As the task of accomplishing God's kingdom is a fight with evil spirits, "the prince of the power of the air," we must also possess spiritual strength, keeping in mind what we read in 1 Corinthians 4:20, "For the kingdom of God does not consist in words but in power." Once we cast off sin, accomplish a pure heart, and fill our hearts with the truth, God will then pour upon us spiritual strength and we receive from Him whatever we ask (1 John 3:22).

c)One must pursue peace with all in his life.
Hebrews 12:14 tells us, "Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord." One who truly desires the Lord must pursue peace with all men; he must abandon his arbitrary way of thinking and insistence on seeking only his own interests but become considerate of others as well. Of course, when the heart becomes perfect, peace will naturally be manifested on its own.
During the last 25 years of the history of Manmin Central Church at any such meetings or discussions as Workers' Assembly, Church Annual Assembly, or Elderly Members' Meeting, never has peace been shattered, and no one has ever uttered a voice of dissidence or objection. This church has pursued peace and existed only for the glory of God.
Pastors and ministers must always face their flock with a Godlike heart filled with love and compassion, and never be involved in any conflicts with anyone.
During the course of my ministry, I have dealt with many different types of people and experienced countless senseless incidents but peace has never been destroyed on my account. Even when I faced disobedient members of the church, those who criticized me without reason, people opposed me greatly and those who paid back grace and compassion with enmity, I persevered because I committed everything to God. As results of my actions, I had to spend many days in grief and apprehension and make tremendous sacrifices but when I overcame them with the goodness and love, God turned them into blessings.

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, after accepting Jesus Christ the apostle Paul made every effort to fight the good fight of faith. As a result, God exalted Paul and he enjoyed the greatest glory in the heavenly kingdom as well. Paul indeed lived a worthwhile life that was without an ounce of regrets.
May each of you take after the apostle Paul, receive from God the crown of righteousness in the heavenly kingdom, and boldly march forward and embrace the Lord, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ I pray!


 

 

 
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