As a spirit being, you are already aware of every attack that comes against you, regardless of its source. Our enemies aren’t very creative, they repeat what’s worked in the past. Recognize your soulical weakness and vulnerabilities, this is where you have been and will continue to be attacked. We all experience doubt, fear, anger, regret, loneliness, apprehension, disappointment, etc. What is Your History? Next time you are attacked in that area, remind your soul that all if its needs have been met, and ask God if He has something He’d like to talk to you about. This way, every attack or even annoyance is turned to our advantage, and we never need to be concerned about the attacks of any of our enemies. Over time you will notice that even though the attacks may not diminish, they will not matter.
As spirit beings, how do we learn?
Think of how we train our pet dogs. For safety sake, we don’t let them out the door to run through the neighborhood at will, so we put up a fence. But if all they know is to run around outside in a fenced back yard, are they learning to control themselves, rein in their instincts, or hear and respond to their master’s commands? Most of us are not satisfied with that kind of relationship with our pets, so we train them and take them for walks to teach them to respond to our voice and commands. But we still rely on the collar and leash to restrain their behavior. For most this is good enough. But others want an even closer connection, they want their pet to trust them and respond to a whisper or gesture. Through obedience training, both the dog and the master learn how to relate and trust, and the outcome is a bond where neither leash nor fence is needed. This takes time and effort and diligence, but the relationship is enduring and satisfying to both.
How does this translate to our relationship with God? We’re not dogs, but think about what it is you are relying on for safety and security when it comes to what’s important to you. Do you expect God, or your church, to take care of you because you attend and are involved? Do you expect God to answer your prayers because you read your Bible or tithe regularly? Is God obligated to protect you because of your ministry, what you’ve done for Him? Or are you putting in the effort, diligence and time to have a truly personal relationship with God, in which you hear and respond to the slightest whisper or gesture and know you are safe because He loves you?
We may think that the fence or walls we have constructed keep us safe. But maybe all they do is give our soul license to remain unyielding to God.
Lord, bring to my awareness any area where I rely on something other than You to keep me safe and protected, and make clear how to cooperate with you to make that change.
Many Christians see themselves as underachievers. Some think that focusing on a goal, and achieving great things is contrary to faith or reflects pride, or maybe they haven’t even thought about it. But Christianity, knowing and being loved by God, is a reflection of His character, which is Exceptional. He wants us to expect to have confidence and achieve great things, He just doesn’t want us to achieve great things out of the power of our soul. Recognize that God has given you desires in your heart, you see problems that need to be solved, opportunities for creativity, people to be helped, bridges to be built. Your goal now is to establish a plan with a specific goal, to develop a set of habits, that incorporate a growing dependency in your spirit rather than upon the strength of your soul, embracing and enjoying the process.
Set aside some time, a couple of hours perhaps, or longer, to recognize and evaluate the desires that may be lurking in your deepest thoughts. Ask the Lord if they are from Him. If those desires are from Him, they are for you now. Take Him seriously and start to lay out a process to achieve those goals, remembering that it is the process of depending on Him that is important, not achieving the goals. What habits need to change? What new habits do you need to create. Spend time with God about the specifics, asking Yes or No questions. He wants you to have confidence that you are hearing from Him and that He has your back as you try new things.
One of the hardest changes we face is when the Lord puts His finger on dearly-held beliefs. Much of what we believe is comfortable because it suits our
Christianity is not a Bible-centered belief system, it is a Christ-bought relationship. You have a Personal Relationship with God, because He loves you, in which both you and God can be yourself, and be real. Take some time this week to let the Lord show you any areas where you are wearing a mask or faking it with Him. Let Him tell you the truth about how He feels about you. Remember to test what you hear, “Lord, is that You?”
God is perpetually creative, and is not restricted in the ways He may choose to lead, guide and direct you. God likes to have fun, so don’t put limits on your expectations of His activities or the ways He may choose to reveal Himself to you. Confidence in your ability to hear Him comes ONLY through experiencing His guidance! Trial and error is part of learning to know God’s voice.
LOOK AND LIVE by Ray Prinzing
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15)
Israel was murmuring and complaining again during their wilderness journey, and God sent fiery serpents among the people, correctional chastening. Then Moses was instructed to make a serpent of brass and put it on a pole, and whomever a serpent bit, when he looked at the brazen serpent, he lived. So also Christ was lifted up on a pole (cross), and now whosoever looks to Him, believes in Him, shall live.
Jesus foretold in the latter days, “men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth”, (Luke 21:26). This looking at the negative conditions is devastating. “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold,” (Matt. 24:12). To see natural conditions – wars and rumors of wars, famines earthquakes floods, fires, is hard enough to cope with, but when combined with the abounding of iniquity the view is enough to cause ‘heart failure’.
BUT THERE IS ANOTHER VIEW, and Jude writes, verse 21, of “looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life”. And Jesus instructed that “when these things begin to come to pass, then LOOK UP, AND LIFT UP YOUR HEADS; FOR YOUR REDEMPTION DRAWETH NIGH”, (Luke 21:31).
One can see all the evil abounding and become despondent and afraid, or they can look “unto Jesus the Author and Finisher of our faith”, and LIVE. Paul joyously proclaimed, “where sin abounded, grace did much more abound”, (Rom. 5:20). Therefore, we look for new manifestations of His grace to super-abound and counter-balance all negative expressions. Looking for His mercy, looking for His grace, looking for the redemption drawing nigh.
What seest thou? I hear the answer, which He gives to me,
I see in Christ a full salvation, perfect victory!