Tuesday, July 17, 2012

"Remove And Add"

"Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us." Hebrews 12:1

I don't know about you but lately I have found my flesh trying to take more and more control in my life. While I am suppose to be putting it to death, it seems as though it is getting stronger instead of weaker. I am in a battle to stay focused on things above. Distractions, the lust of my own flesh, the cares of this life are waging war against my spirit by trying to consume my time and attention, in order to hinder me from fulfilling the plan of God for my life.

When you are in a war, you have a choice to make-- either let the enemy destroy you, or fight him. In a spiritual battle you have the same choices-- do nothing (which is giving in) and be destroyed, or fight and win the victory. I choose to fight. Below is my strategy for fighting. I am inviting you this morning to join with me if you are going through a time where your own flesh is trying to rule and destroy you.

My strategy is called: 21 days to discipline. For the next 21 days I am on an all out war on my flesh. For the next 21 days I am examining the weak areas of my life and I am doing two things: Remove- "let aside"; Add - "run". The reason for most struggles with the flesh is a lack of discipline. When we aren't disciplined, our flesh runs wild. We have to chasten it and make it obedient to the Spirit.

This is how the plan works. I am removing (laying aside) those things that I have identified as snares. Each day remove something that you know is hindering you- that may mean you have to fast from food, from television, from the computer, from going shopping, etc.... from anything that seems to consume your time and thoughts besides God. Each day I will add something that I know will help grow spiritually and make me strong. What can you add that will make you stronger? Set your clock to get up one hour earlier so that you aren't in a rush and leave the house without communion with the Lord. Read an extra chapter in your Bible. Get those newsletters out of the drawer that you haven't read and begin reading them. Bake a cake and give to a neighbor. Visit the sick or shut ins. Stop during the middle of the day and meditate on God's word. Memorize a new scripture verse. Send an encouraging email to a friend. Add anything that will stop you from thinking about yourself so much and what you want to do.

Some teach against doing this because Christianity isn't a "checklist", it is a "lifestyle". That is very true, but sometimes you have to have a plan of attack against your flesh and carry out that plan. If I want to have a healthy productive garden, I have to remove the weeds and add nutrients. It's the same. I want to have a healthy spirit man, so I have to identify the "weeds of the flesh" and remove them, and I have to add those spiritual nutrients that will make me thrive spiritually.

If you are joining me in this please keep in mind that Jesus already won the war, we already have victory in Him. We are just bringing our flesh into submission to the Sprit so that we can walk unhindered in and enjoy the victory He won for us, and so that our spirits become fine tuned to His Spirit so that we can also finish the race that is set before us and complete the task He has called us to do. Also keep in mind that if you don't look to Him, lean upon Him and be strengthened by Him, then you are making it just a checklist of dos and don'ts and will wind up trying to accomplish it in your own flesh-- which is just another work of the flesh.

Have a great day. Battle plan: Remove and Add.

For further reading:
Romans 8:13
Colossians 3:5
1 Corinthians 9:27

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Coffee Break is a morning devotional written by Lorraine Ezell
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