Going Au-Naturel Written By Corinne Sander!

“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness”

2 Peter 1:3

So, how is everyone doing?  Is anyone feeling a little stressed or worn out?  I know I have.

In the last two months, my family and I have faced some really tough situations. 

Through these God has been challenging me in how I respond to those situations. 

There are my reactions and there is God’s way.  In truth, it’s been difficult to do what God instructs and not just be angry or sad or defeated.  But God is faithful. 

He has been teaching and guiding me.  He has led me down a path of “going au-naturel”.

How many times have we heard, “Oh, do what comes naturally!”? 

I’m sure you’ve heard it a lot.

We hear it from society with so many seeking to fill the void in their lives and hearts.  I’ve heard it enough times and associated enough times with selfish-sinful actions and desires that I wanted to avoid anything that “came naturally”. 

The statements that come with “natural” and “nature” tend to be very worldly driven, not words synonymous with God and His purpose.  Then I came across a passage in 2 Peter 1:3-4

His divine power has given us everything we need for a Godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.

This is where I came to understand that there is another, better nature we can strive for.

God’s Divine Nature.

“Do What Comes Naturally”

There are two natures that we face as Christians. 

First, we live in the physical world and our natural-born human nature.  As believers, we are given the opportunity to participate and live in the unworldly divine nature.

Recently, my husband and I have been attending a Bible Study Group which is watching a series called, “Uncompromised”.  The pastor from this series makes some great points about worldly vs. biblical ways. 

He pointed out worldly-driven morality is complex, life-taking, and ever-changing. 

Biblically driven morality is simple, life-giving, and unchanging.  These are the opposing human nature versus divine nature.  I read a recent quote on PragerU’s site:

“Some people say ‘human nature is the ultimate source of morality. 

But human nature can lead us to do all sorts of reprehensible things. 

In fact, human nature is the reason we NEED morality.”

Human nature is about the here and now. 

It is about satisfying our immediate wants.  It reflects our direct desire to fulfill our selfish hearts, to protect our own investments, and to basically do what we want. 

Human nature satisfies us in only a moment, it takes an eye for an eye, and it cares very little for the bigger picture. 

As soon as Adam and Eve sinned, their “natural” reaction was blame and accusations.  They did not take account for themselves, nor did they seek forgiveness. 

Because of their choice, we face the consequence of a world where we all are natural-born sinners.

Divine nature is from God’s very character which is very much the opposite of this world. 

It is the opposite of our instincts of self-preservation, survival, and self-centeredness. 

Galatians 5:22-23 says ‘But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, ‘

We are instructed to bear the Fruits of the Spirit.  Love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, these attributes look beyond the now, beyond ourselves. 

In true love, we seek the best for those we love.  We find joy that does not reflect our circumstances. 

We have peace even through the most tumultuous times.  We endure wrongs through forbearance.  Our kindness goes out to all.  Our goodness is self-evident.  Our faith is strong through thick and thin.  People know us by our gentleness toward them.  And we control the desires that only seek to please ourselves. 

Through these fruits, God calls us to participate in Divine Nature. 

Now, this is where our free will comes into play.  To participate in anything, you must first choose to be active in it. 

In turn, we must choose to do these fruits of the Spirit, they do not come naturally. 

Jesus explained to Nicodemus in John 3:3, we must choose to become a new creation in Christ. 

We must become born-again sons and daughters of God, children who elect to participate in His divine nature, the very opposite of human nature.

“What is Your Nature?”

Our “nature” becomes more apparent in how we respond in hard times. 

It’s those knee-jerk responses. 

Ask yourself: 

How do I respond when things don’t go my way? 

How do I respond to those who don’t believe in God or follow His Truth? 

How do I respond to those who betray me or my family? 

How do I respond when a crisis comes to my door? 

How do I respond to those who are completely lost? 

How do I respond when the world descends into chaos? 

As I was growing up, there was a great trend among the youth toward WWJD.  “What Would Jesus Do?” 

I can’t help but think this world could use more of this saying and thought process again. 

Divine nature of course came naturally to Jesus.  It was in everything He did.  It’s a good place to start with trying to emulate Jesus’ example. 

Ask yourself, how would Jesus handle or address any given situation? 

He spoke Love.  He spoke Truth.  He aimed to win souls.  He focused on the individual whenever possible.  He was passionate about His father.

Jesus told us in order to live holy lives, to do God’s will, we must love the Lord God with all our heart, soul, and mind and then love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:37-40).  He instructed us on how to respond to this broken world. 

When things are tough, do we naturally seek love, joy, or peace? 

Are we living in the forbearance of others? 

Are we kind when we are in a hurry when we are angry or irritated? 

Is our goodness evident when we are stressed? 

Are we gentle to those who have wronged us? 

How is our self-control when we are weary to the bone?

Remember, none of these attributes come naturally to our human nature. 

But when we stand on God’s promises, He helps us participate in His divine nature. 

Forbearance is an expression of grace; the very grace that God promised to give us

Jesus promised peace that the world cannot give.  His peace is found not in human nature; it is a peace beyond this existence. 

God promised us forgiveness when we repent, but He also loves us before we repent.  He loves us so much that He provided a way out of our sinful state, through salvation in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. 

If we can understand and see these promises for ourselves, how much more should we see others in this very same light? Jesus came for all.  He invites us to live in this world with His loving eyes.

To participate in divine nature means we are set apart, we are to be holy.  Divine nature does not conform to the desires of this world.

I have heard it described as the Upside Down Kingdom.  The kingdom of God does the opposite of what the world expects.  It is to be transformed by God’s love. 

Everything we do, say, and how we respond should be active choices to be more like Christ. 

We must choose to respond differently than the rest of the world. 

This world says we should always choose to do what feels good, to do what makes us happy.  God tells us not everything is beneficial. 

God’s way is always looking to the bigger picture, to His great plan.  He knows the true cost of any of our choices.   To help us participate, God sent His Advocate— the Holy Spirit to guide and direct us to the correct path. 

The Holy Spirit is there to help us weigh the choices we make, to make us more aware of the cost of those choices.  In an example, anger costs us broken relationships, resentment, and a bitter heart. 

While on the other hand, forgiveness and kindness cost us our pride and maybe some of our time.  The long outcome is better with forgiveness, every time. 

With the Holy Spirit, we begin to look for the choices that reflect God’s truth and purpose. 

The more we participate in divine nature, the more in tune we are with God. 

We approach the place where our deepest desire is to be with Him. 

We approach the reality of heaven, of completeness even though we are still in this present physical world.

In the US, we tend to think of au-naturel as people going with no clothes on! 

Au-naturel actually is a French phrase that is usually used in cooking, something that is prepared very simply. 

It also describes a person who puts on very few fronts such as makeup or fancy clothes or hairstyles. 

But think of it this way, if we go au-naturel in Christ, we take off the complicated earthly desires to let our true selves, our God-created beautiful souls, shine through. 

Let us stand on God’s loving promises and let His Divine Nature be the path we choose.  Let’s go au-naturel in Christ.

Take Action

I want you to strip off your clothes and run naked in the fields.

Just kidding!

What I really want you to do is to strip off the world from your views of Christ and go Au-Naturel today with him.

The best way to do that is to take action today and share this devotion with at least one person.

Email it to them! Share it on Facebook! If they are an old school then print it off and hand-deliver it to them!

(PS this last part was Dan. Corinne would never tell you to run naked through a field. Lol)

Lord, God today we come to you to say thank you.  I am so grateful for our community.  I am grateful that Corinne chose to allow us to share her message with our community.  I am thankful that you are helping us to grow this community!  I am grateful for this message and everything that it has in it.  God today we want to take a minute and just ask that you would help us.  Help us strip away our bad thoughts. And help us to keep you simple.  Help us to know that you are always there for us when we need you. Help us to see a need and fill that need. God, you are so amazing. Today I want to simply say thank you for being you and allowing us to grow closer to you with every step we take.

We ask all these things in your precious son’s name.

Amen

A Little More

The day before Jenna and I left for our first trip as just a couple since our oldest was born 16 years ago, Corinne delivered this amazing message at our church. 

As she was delivering it I KNEW in my heart that we needed to share it.

Afterward, I ran up to the pulpit and asked if she would be willing to share it with us so we could share it with the God First Community.

She was so great and said yes.

So as I sit here in Cancun, Mexico at a business Mastermind with Russell Brunson! (I know I’m like a little kid getting all giddy about it)

Anyways….

AS I sit here looking out the view from our room it hit me that God is AMAZING.

Not just because it is snowing at home and it is sunny and 85* here with a slight breeze from the ocean.

But because my eyes were opened that our network is growing! 

It is so exciting to see what God is doing in our lives.

So let me tell you a little bit about what we did while we were here.

First off Jenna and I  have both had MAJOR breakthroughs in our business, Eclipse DOT and www.DOTDocs.com (shameless plug lol). 

Not only that but we have decided to move forward on several different things for God’s First Life too!!!!!

For now, we are working out the details, so we can’t really let too much slip out. But I can promise you that we will as soon as we can.

You know that I hate secrets.

Anyways. We have had so much fun down here and we have been filling both of our love tanks (and bellies with buffets) so that we can recharge and come back as a power couple.

Hopefully, you have seen a few of the videos that we shot while we’re down here about the 5 love languages.  If not, you need to check out our Facebook page and watch them! 

Be sure to turn the sound up!

The last thing I want to leave you with here. is that you can do anything, as long as you do it for God!

When we work with God in everything we do we are guaranteed to succeed. We might fail a few times on our way up, but we can most definitely succeed in the end.

So the next time you start a project, plan a trip, have a conversation, ask a question, complete any task.

Send up a quick prayer.

God please help me through this, help me show you through everything I do!

We are going to go swimming in some amazing caves and see more of God’s creation. 

I better quit typing because Jenna is leaving without me!

See you guys soon!

Dan and Jenna!

Will you pray with us?

Mankind throughout the world throughout our current situation

All Law enforcement and emergency response personnel

For all military personal serving our country and their families

Those in Leadership positions throughout the world