From the character of Christ will come the conduct of Christ, if we chose to follow Him.
Then, those values of our daily walk, which drive our behaviors, will, in turn, influence others. You cannot lead where you have not been, or where you do not know the direction to go. This is why discipleship is so essential to the aspect of being a Christian. We are called, not to just visualize discipleship, but to do it; not to just talk about it, but to do it. One cannot just think about dinner and satisfy hunger; the meal has to be prepared, then eaten! The effective church will take Scripture and the call of our Lord seriously, and then implement it into functioning!
Let Jesus be your supreme example in all that you do.
Maturity is realizing that our Lord can and will bring goodness and glory to any situation, as long as He is glorified. That is even through our weakness and failures, through our letdowns and discouragement's, Christ is there loving us and encouraging us.
Leaning to Submit to God
God is calling us to be proactive with our faith so we can grow and be mature. This requires us to be faithful which requires us to submit and to be humble. The result is respect, cooperation, unity, community, and the power of His Fruit at work.
Leaning to Resist the Devil
The devil wants to get a hold on us so he can attack to discourage and sway us away from God and His ways. Our defense is simple; we are to stand firm in Christ, pray, and allow His work in us and not ours; what we would bring to the table is just fuel for the devil and his ways!
God's Enduring Word!
Is the power and love of God enduring in you? Is your Christian life having results to it? The word "therefore" is referring to the results, conclusions, or applications that are to be in our lives from the reasons given.
To enter the Kingdom of Heaven requires the kind of trust and faith in Christ that a child has that they will be cared for. It also means to be dependent on God and not on self. Children cannot achieve or pay for their own way just as we cannot do so for our place in heaven.
God desires that we have confidence in Him. This is built when our discipleship is taking root in us. So we are growing in a close relationship to Christ, infused with the Holy Spirit, not merely seeking what we can get.
We are called to be understanding and patient! As "older" or more "mature" Christians we should gladly accept people who are "weaker" in faith.
We are called to get our minds lined up with God-His Way, His precepts, and His plan. We still have the old sinful nature residing within us. God declares us clean, but we do not become completely clean.
Christ Brings Division!
We have to realize Christianity has a cost to it. The cost may be big, but we can take comfort it is well worth the cost beyond our understanding!
Be on Guard against Yourself!
All have sinned, no one is immune therefore we have no right to judge! Hear is the root cause of sin and their various manifestations to how we as Christians can get caught up in a heinous sin too: Being Judgmental.
These words simply mean that I choose to break away from my way of doing things, to focus on and embrace God's ways.
Fasting that Pleases God
When you take a look at our culture, fast food places on almost every corner and countless opportunities to eat whatever you wish, even a committed Christian may never consider Fasting. Yet, one of the classic, Christian aspects of growing deeper in the faith is Fasting.
A Preview of Heaven
Why does John give us this preview of Heaven? Perhaps it is all about Hope, that vital fuel and stimulate necessary for all that we do successfully in life and for Him. It is also the fuel for us to be encouraged so we can encourage others-to prosper and grow in times of stress, suffering, and confusion. He has prepared a place for us; what is more wonderful than that?
Looking beyond Ourselves
Our desires must be focused on Him: Christ our Lord. We must feel the anticipation and the excitement to be with and in Him, so that we not only hear His Word; but we do His Word, the Word of God.
This also means as a Christian, a call in knowing Jesus Christ as LORD and being prepared by faith, spiritual maturity, character, and Fruit to develop our faith so we are ready for life and also His return.