His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins. Therefore, brothers, be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and election, for if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
2 Peter 1:3-11 ESV
Do you have a favorite recipe? Or is there perhaps a favorite family recipe that you love? Maybe this recipe takes you back to a place of fond memories, wonderful times remembered just by seeing the recipe, smelling it cooking or tasting the very dish once it is completed. Once we get our hands on that recipe and before we make the dish for the very first time what do we do? We read the recipe, then we read it again and then we might even read it a third time. Once we have read it over and over we then begin to write down everything we will need and the exact measurments needed of each item. We prepare, plan and then we begin working on the recipe, making sure to follow the instructions exactly as they are written. We want to ensure that we get the accurate color, texture, flavor and aroma from this recipe. But like most cherished family recipes there may possibly be a “secret ingredient” in your recipe, it is that one thing that makes your cupcake different from every other cupcake. It is the one thing that makes your recipe unique to your family. So we may share our recipe with others in part but it is likely that we will leave out that one secret ingredient. So everytime they make the recipe they are going to be trying to figure out what they are doing wrong because it is never going to taste exactly like yours because you have withheld that one minor ingredient.
In some ways our lives are just like a recipe. There are certain “ingredients” that are required for us to be who we are. There is a precise and formulated combination that it takes to make me who God has called me too be!! But this recipe does not come from our favorite cook book, we can not find a list of ingredients in Betty Crocker book or online. That “ingredients” that we need are found in the Word of God! The exact measurements, the very precise instructions from the smallest to the largest item are all included in God’s Word. But it must begin with Faith in Jesus Christ. In the writing noted above by Peter he gives us some “ingredients” for an even better, more fulfilling life in Christ. Here is the recipe we find in his text:
- Begin with a Personal Abiding Relationship with Jesus
- Add goodness and an equal amount of Knowledge
- Stir in self control and perseverance
- Combine with Godliness
- Add a pinch of mutual affection
- Mix thouroughly and then bake with an abundance of love
But do not get discouraged and remember that God does not expect us to become instantly perfect in all of the qualities (ingredients) listed by Peter in this passage. However, he does tell us that if we possess these qualities in increasing measure then this will keep us from being ineffective and unproductive in Jesus Christ. So this brings me back full circle to the Intimate Abiding Relationship with Jesus. We (I) can not continue to add these ingredients (qualities) in increasing measures if I don’t have a relationship with Jesus! Growing in these areas because of our relationship with Jesus is the best recipe for a healthy & productive life. Praise that Lord that all of the “ingredients” we need are listed and available to anyone who woud seek to find them, ulike that favorite family recipe, there are no ingredients with held from us by Our Heavenly Father.
So I would challenge you to think about a couple of things now that you have read this “recipe”.
- Which “ingredient” (characteristic) listed in the passage is an area that you might need to seek God to have Him help you grow in?
- God is not with holding anything from us that we need to be succesful in Him. However, is there anything in our lives that were holding back and keeping from Him? Is this “thing” keeping us from reaching our full potential in Christ?
- Think about the ways you have grown in your relationship with Jesus since you started followin Him. How does it make you feel to be able to honestly see the change and growth in your own life?
So I would like you too take a moment and think about and pray about these questions. But remember God knows it is going to take time and he is there ready to walk with you, hold your hand and encourage you all along the way. He does not expect 100% change in one moment, He gives grace and forgiveness! We did not get to the place we are today over night and God knows it is going to take time, One step at a time!!
Dear Jesus, I want to first of all say Thank You for all you have done for me in my life, let me never forget what you pulled me out of!! I pray for each person readng this that they can find peace and forgiveness. Jesus, I ask you too guide me and direct me as I walk through this day with you. I know Jesus that you have a plan for me and my life, I ask you to help me figure out how I continue to grow while be reliant on you. Thank You Jesus for all you have already done and all you plan to go on. I know that in myself I can not does this alone. Jesus you are wonderful and I am thankful for you!! ~Amen