By Pastor Shana Wise
I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called,
· From the day you responded to the Gospel of Jesus Christ until now, God has been equipping you to activate and demonstrate your faith in Him in the earth realm to display His Glory.
2 with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, 3 endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism; 6 one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
· The church, (you), has been graced to endure these trying times. Part of this grace is long-suffering, bearing with one another in love, and being united by the Spirit with peace (vs. 2-3)
· Since we, the church, are in one fellowship with the Lord, we have been given power and authority in the earth.
7 But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. 8 Therefore He says: “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.” 9 (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)
· Christ was the greatest gift that we received in our life. Nothing compares to this wonderful gift, because it is the gift that keeps on giving. In the Spirit of Christ, we are also “gifts” to the body of Christ here on earth. Our various spiritual gifts are developed daily as we walk and mature in him.
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,
· All the preaching and teaching assignments that have been given to the body of Christ, from Jesus himself, have prepared you through discipleship and teaching to endure the trying times that we are in now. We have been equipped to serve (work the ministry) no matter what is going on in the earth.
· Various things, such as Coronavirus, are allowed and sometimes sent, to activate the believers to respond with the Gift and gifts they have been given.
· Now is the hour for the church to stand up and be the church. We have been equipped through the Word of God to respond to the times (edify the body of Christ). Our response has the power and influence to demonstrate the undeniable power of God to the unbelievers.
13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;
· God is perfecting us by His Son Jesus Christ through the various challenges of life. Every time that God has brought us through some of the most difficult and challenging times of our lives, we came though it with a little more strength, in the Spirit, than we had before. Like a diamond, had to be put in the fire before it could shine, God allows us to endure hardships to shine more and more like his son Christ.
· Wisdom comes through the correct application of knowledge. The more we come to know Christ as our Lord and Savior through our walk with him, the more we will be able to respond effectively when trouble arises.
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
· In Matthew chapter 24, Jesus speaks about the end times. We must know that tribulation is coming but it is our response that will determine how we get through it. This is the time to carefully read, study, obey and apply the Word to our daily lives so we do not be deceived. Hard times must come to reveal how deep our roots are. During this time of “uncertainty” God using it to expose “roots” and at the same time building our faith. False prophets and doctrines are on the rise, and it will only get worse, however, we must be able to respond with the unadulterated Word of God. So many are being deceived at this hour, and sadly, people that go to church regularly may be deceived because they are not as devoted to God as they should be.
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— 16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.
· During this time, no matter what is going on, God is still speaking, what does he have for you to speak about during these times? Is your speech in the love and wisdom of God?
· Who does he have for you to serve? Who needs your gift at this hour?
· As the body of Christ, now is the time for us to respond in love through our actions. When we respond in this manner, it causes the body of Christ to grow. Remember, there are still many who have not responded to the Gospel of Jesus Christ yet. We are the ones left here on earth to bring to Good News-especially when the news media is flooded with messages that are not good.
· Lastly, John 16:33 states, These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” We have overcome the world, meaning no matter what happens, we have the peace of God encompassing us.
About the Author
Dr. Shana Wise is an ordained Pastor and CEO of Wise Choice Ministries (est. 2016). She is the founder of The Well Christian Women’s Network formally known as Christian Women Preachers United. Dr. Wise is the author of women’s devotional, Acts of Intercession, and The Impact of Your Election (available on Amazon). She received a doctor of divinity degree in 2019 from St. Thomas Christian University. Her passion is to teach and preach the gospel of Jesus Christ, equip others to apply the Word to their lives, and demonstrate the Word through the power of the Holy Spirit. She is a televangelist that appears on social media outlets and television. Shana is married to Ron Wise and is the mother of four children.