Greetings and good morning brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly Father has revealed many spiritual truths to me, and I want to share them with you. This morning we will ponder our lives as we seek to understand the plan of the Father.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
The Plan of the Father
"Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Matthew, Chapter
5, Verse 48.
The plan of the Father is the purpose of the Father. The purpose of the Father is the will of the Father. The Father desires that we become spiritually perfect even as He is spiritually perfect. To put it simply, we must perfect our characters. The command Jesus gave, "Be you perfect even as I am perfect," refers to our characters. Obeying this command is the first step in cooperating with the Father's plan.
And we do this by using our spiritual imaginations--actually seeing ourselves as being perfect--complete--as the heavenly Father is perfect. This is worship. After visualizing our future state, the next step is to dedicate and consecrate our self-will to the Father's will. This propels us forward. We mean to become and do all that is required to achieve such a magnificent goal, even to love our neighbor as ourselves. Such a declaration means that we will pay whatever it costs us to learn how to love our brothers and sisters as Jesus does.
Prayer is the secret to learning how to do the Father's will, for in prayer the Father's way is revealed as an alternative to our way. We clearly see the difference. If we choose His way, which is higher, then we choose His will. If we choose our way, the lower, then we choose our own. If we don't seek to know his way when we are confronted with moral and spiritual decisions, there's no way we can choose his will for we won't know what it is. It is obvious that we can't choose that which we don't know. And having recognized the better way, His way, His Will, we must subject our will to his with every moral and spiritual decision with which we are confronted.
Although the selfish storms of life may encourage us to protest against submission, our souls experience great peace when we subject our wills in every moral and spiritual choice. We are to accomplish this spiritual perfection as we are here in the flesh even as Jesus did when he lived here.
A scripture gives us a glimpse into how Jesus progressed in perfection: "And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and Man." Luke, Chapter 2, Verse 52. The Father's plan calls for Him to use all of our life circumstances--anything that will cause us to stop and reflect--to provide us with the choice of His will or ours. We must stand and refuse to flee from any disagreeable experience.
To assist us in this gigantic and glorious task, Jesus has left us with the Comforter, the Spirit of Truth, to guide us into all truth, even the truth of divine perfection. In the midst of our desires for self-gratification, self-interest, and escape from self, we must continuously declare, "not my will, but Your will be done." By such a consistent attitude we learn to master our difficulties--we have submitted and reacted to our experiences the way the Spirit of Truth would. Our consistent attitudes gradually become unconscious habits. In short they become part of our characters.
As we continue to react to life's challenges according to the Father's will--that is, with love, patience, mercy, forgiveness and faith and trust in the Father's goodness-- divine wisdom emerges. We have begun to develop spiritual insight into the true purpose of life. As we progressively learn to adjust and attune our will to the Father's will, we slowly realize that nothing of spiritual value is ever lost.
As our sense of disappointment decreases and our understanding of true success heightens, we begin to grasp the magnificent plan that the Father of love has so graciously bestowed on his children. After all, all things work together for good for those who are called according to the Father's purpose.
This concludes today's message on understanding the Father's plan for our lives. We hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day. Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.