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Athletes In Christ
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  July 2018  
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Shaping and Forming

1. We all start out NEW! Praise God!!! 

Our first birth is as an infant and our second birth is when we accept Jesus Christ as our personal savior. READ John 3:3-7 

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" 2 Corinthians 5:17 

From this point forward God will begin to shape and form us into the likeness of His son Jesus Christ. READ 2 Corinthians 3:18 

God is committed to the task of working in us, developing us, rearranging, firming up and deepening us so that the character traits of His Son begin to take shape. The emerging of the Son¡¦s image in us is of primary importance to the Father. 

2. The Breaking in Process 

Like a new baseball glove is merely pieces of a dead cow strung together waiting for its owner to transform it into a productive tool, we can allow Christ to come inside us and transform us by giving us new birth. 

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead". 
I Peter 1:3 

A new glove is stiff and lacks any personal character until we work with it, shaping it to our likeness (our hands are all different sizes and shapes), shaping it to fit our hands. 

In order to work with our new glove, we must put our hand in it. This is the only way the glove can become useful and come to life. The same is true for our lives; we must be willing to allow Christ to enter us to begin working with us. 

When we ask Christ into our lives, He enters our lives much like our hand enters a new glove to begin working with it and shaping it into the likeness of our hand. Much like He will shape us into His very own likeness. 

We must continue to care for the glove after it becomes useful or it will become dry and begin to crack and will not be as useful anymore. The same is true about our spiritual growth. 

G - Go to God in Prayer Daily (John 15:17) 
R - Read God¡¦s Word Daily (Acts 17:11) 
O - Obey God, Moment by Moment (John 14:21) 
W - Witness for Christ by your Life and Words(Mat 4:19) 
T - Trust God for Every Detail of your Life (IPet 5:7) 
H - Holy Spirit ¡V Allow God to Control and Empower your Life Daily (Galations 5:16,17; Acts 1:8) 

Just as this glove becomes a useful tool, we become a tool for Christ. He uses us as a witness to lead others to Him! 

"To never stop teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ". Acts 5:42 

The more broken in the glove becomes, the more it changes and the better it feels. God is committed to our being changed, no matter how long or how painful the process. While being changed, we may feel like a shapeless mass. 

We will need to be broken, some more so than others. But trust in God, He is the potter and we are the clay. Jeremiah 18:6 

Scars are a sign of usefulness, like a good infielders glove will have scars on its back side from the 100's of groundballs it has fielded. We too will have scars that heal and make us stronger spiritually. 

Stand on His promise that He will never forsake us, never leave us, and as long as we rely on His strength, we will always be able to handle whatever life throws at us. 
Remember, the breaking in process is designed to reshape us, not ruin us

If you've never asked Christ to come in and make you new, to work with you, to shape you into a tool that He can use to expand His kingdom. Here is an opportunity. 

Let's all pray this prayer together with our mouths and if it is the first time for you I encourage you to tell someone that can pray for you and help hold you accountable. God will do the rest. Surrender your life to Him and experience the power of being made new. 

Lord Jesus, I need and I understand that I am a sinner and can not save myself. I believe that you died on the cross for my sins and then rose from the grave to new life. I believe you are my Savior. Forgive my sins and help me to begin to follow you. Please come into my life and take control making me the person you want me to be. Thank you for coming into my life. I ask these things in Jesus name. Amen.