In Search of Rebirth

I am in need of a rebirth. A rebirth in my spiritual zeal. I am presently at a place where I feel very disconnected in my walk with the Lord. I am of course totally at fault here. But I am reminded of a scripture in the Old Testament . Genesis 32:26 says “And he said, Let me go, for the day breaks. And he said, I will not let you go, except you bless me.”

I won’t stop pursuing my rebirth in the zeal, the zest, and the passion I once had in my relationship with Christ. He has still blessed me when I did not pray. He has still blessed me when I did not seek his face. He has still blessed me when I was too wrapped up in my own world to consult with him on daily matters. He is faithful.

I come to Jesus with a repentant heart. I am excited in advance for His restoration and the “day break” that will take place in my heart.

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God’s Acknowlegment

Everyone wants to be acknowledged in some way for the good things they do. We all have an innate desire to be appreciated. It hurts when our concerns, our help, our voices, or our work goes unnoticed by others. If we’re not careful resentment can easily seep in. We may start to say things like, ” ‘Why should I say anything it won’t make a difference. Why should I vote, my voice won’t be heard or nothing will ever change. Why help no one will notice what I’ve done.’ ”

Have you ever thought that those feelings are Satan’s ploys? He doesn’t want us to help. He doesn’t want us to pour into people. He wants us to throw up our hands and say why bother. It’s how we choose to look at these situations that makes all the difference. We should not work unto man in the first place. We should work unto the Lord. Proverbs 3:6 says “In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy path.” Psalm 118:8, 9 says “It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.” Psalm 146:3 goes even further and says ” Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help.”

This simply means that man is not perfect and is subject to frailties and faults. With that said he or she is incapable of being another’s complete source of satisfaction. He or she is incapable of providing the deep spiritual needs that most of us desire to be filled. For example, we may seek acknowledgement and understanding but because we all are mere humans and subject to brokeness ourselves we are unable to always provide that to others. But we have a God who can provide the very things that we so desire. He is the only one that can fill the needs that we have. John 4:14 says ” But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into an everlasting life.”

If we seek God first we will acquire everything we need and be surrounded by his blessings. We will have peace that surpasses all understanding. We will have joy unspeakable that will overshadow the brokeness we feel when others don’t understand or acknowledge us. Why? Because we will have gained the proper perspective. We will then know God will provide all that we need because we will have acknowledged that HE is the source of everything that we need. So when we recognize that God is that source we can rest on that. 

As we go out into the world to be about our Father’s business ;whether it be by showing a simple act of kindness, helping those in need, working in our careers, tending to our families, or providing our civic duty let’s remember why we are doing it. We’re not doing it for show, or to boast and brag, or to get a pat on the back such as the Pharisees. We are doing it unto the Lord. It will put things in it’s proper place and we will avoid the trap of the enemy. Galations 6:9 says “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” And in eternity we will have the greatest acknowlegment where it counts the most, from God himself. Matthew 25:21 “His Lord said unto him, Well done thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler of many things: enter thou unto the joy of thy lord.”

Identity Crisis

Is it possible to be a Christian and not know who you are fully? The answer is most definitely a yes. Identity crises come in many forms. I’m sure to some this concept of a professing Christian struggling with an identity crisis is foreign.

In our society today we truly don’t give God his just due. We don’t place him in the proper position in our lives. We place everything and everyone in his space instead. We place our careers over God when we allow what we do to define who we are and if we’re worthy of even being “somebody”.

We place others (like our spouses, family members, friends, business partners etc.) over God when we’re concerned with the way they respond to us. We try to make them want us, love us, and stay connected to us. We try to use human wisdom to create bliss within the confines of a relationship. We seek affirmation, validation, and adoration solely from others.

We place our children over God when we’re concerned with molding them to conform to the world’s idea of success, which is nothing except external factors of such. We deposit in their little minds all the wordly deeds it takes to live a happy life. We’ll even throw a Christian cliche  (for example: don’t forget to put God first) in for good measure when we “counsel” them.

We place causes over God when we pursue it to the point of exhaustion or worst, to be recognized as a good person either by God or man. After we go behind the scenes of trying to mold and whip our own lives into a perfect little box, we are often exhausted and disappointed. When the smoke clears after all that “hard work” we begin to see all we’ve really accomplished is chasing the wind.

 God reveals that when we chase the wind we’re wrapping ourselves inside idols. He reveals that we don’t yet know fully who we are in HIM. So we instead try to establish our identity through these and other sources. Idols cannot heal, cannot love without fault, cannot satisfy, cannot quench, cannot save, and cannot nurture our souls. Idols cannot affirm or validate us. They can’t reach inside that essential part of soul and spirit where only God can reach.With idols we will always have a disappointment or a reoccurring longing  because we choose to put anything in God’s position, instead of God himself.

After the disappointment(s) are feelings of disbelief, bitterness, and emptiness. We have our expectations riding on different factors. Many times we miss so ultimately our lives become spinning circles. Once we put on our spiritual eyes, we become aware of the major identity crisis issues we have. But this is the very place to start. By looking at our surrounding circumstances, other people, and ourselves through spiritual eyes we get to learn who we are in God. It’ll bring peace and joy unspeakable.

This is no small feat. It is a process. Processes are not always fun but is neccessary for our progression and growth in spiritual matters. Once we ackowledge and relish in the fact that we are wonderfully and fearfully made by God, that we are made in his image, that we are a royal priesthood, etc., we can rest in him because we’ll finally know who we are. After that freedom will abound.

Fire

It’s amazing what goes on when Satan is attacking you.  It can feel like your world has totally collapsed. Your spirit is beyond crushed. Your soul feels hollow. All hope seems lost. You walk aimlessly through life not knowing if you are coming or going.

As a Christian who is familiar with the word, you know all about the Scriptures that can be a balm for your wounded spirit. Yet, you fall so low you can’t even seem to grab hold to what you know will be good to you and good for you. You my friend are smack dab in the middle of a raging fire. You’re dropping and rolling constantly trying not to get burned. It is sheer agony.

I am here to tell you DO NOT MOVE. Yes, you’ve heard me correctly. DO NOT MOVE. As much as you want to take matters into your hands, the battle is not yours, it’s the Lord’s. He will fight on your behalf and win. You will be delivered from the fiery grips of Satan and his agents. Two passages of Scripture that are especially helpful to me in circumstances like this are Daniel 3: 26-27.

Daniel 3:26 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire.

Daniel 3:27 And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king’s counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them.

More passages of Scriptures that can help you quench the raging fire that surround you are Ephesians 6:10-16.

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 

Ephesians 6:11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Ephesians 6:13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Ephesians 6:14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt, about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

Ephesians 6:15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

Ephesians 6:16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

Stand, child of God. While tears wash your face, stand. While your knees shake, stand. While your legs are about to give way dig your heels in the earth and stand. All the while that you are standing communicate with the Almighty and watch and see the power of God move on your behalf. You will come forth from the fire shiny and new with God’s glory.

The Safest Place……

As I look back over my life thus far, I realize I am truly blessed. I know there are some days that are darker than others but overall I treasure the fact that I’m covered by the blood of Jesus Christ. However, I was born with a sin nature, so I’ll naturally do some things that are contrary to my faith. But as foolish as I can be sometimes, he still looks after me.  If I am lost, he finds me. If I act unseemingly, he tugs at my heart. For everything bad I do, he’s always there to counter it with something good.

I am not saying that to say that I can live my life with no regard; but God grants us grace and mercy for such times. I  thank him for it because he doesn’t owe me anything. He gives it to me because he’s God.  I want to walk in his will because it’s the safest place to be. The power of prayer can make that happen. I do trust that the work that he has begun in me will be made manifest.

One Step At A Time

God never ceases to amaze me. Prior to my last post, I felt well…. blah. I was in the throws of complacency and irritable over being inconsistent in my Christian walk. Almost immediately after I posted it, this feeling of renewal started to erupt inside of me.

It is as if God said ” I was just waiting on you to come forth so I could give you what you’ve been longing for.” I have heard it said that if we make one step he’ll make two. Words won’t do justice to how remarkable I feel right now. So I’ll just bask in His glow. Yes I’ve fallen and I will fall again and again. But I will get up and walk closer to him one step at a time.

Falling Away

In November I blogged about the fight to hold on. Well, those words ring so true for me  right now.  To be frank, I feel awful about my Christian walk at this moment. My inconsistency irritates me to no end. I feel as if I am walking in a desert and seeing water from a distance. I walk closer only to discover it is a mirage.

I can see the communion with Jesus and the solid peace one gets in his presence (because I have experienced it myself time and time again). I know that to have this  the heart and spirit must be in sync with him. But I am void of the passion it takes to firmly hold on tight. I want it but I feel as if I am lacking the will to be firmly locked in his care. It sounds confusing because in most cases it is simple. If you want it just go after it, or just do it. But for me, the will in spiritual matters is complex. I have allowed different things to pull me away so my passion for things spiritual has waned. I have breached my connection to God and that was not my intention.

While blogging this entry, I already see an answer; which is to pray. I can do NOTHING without him. Not even become closer to him.  I was born in sin and shaped in iniquity. Even though I know this, it still feels awful to fall away from Jesus when I know the truth. But I am trusting God that he will restore the breach that I have placed on our connection. Thank you God for loving me in spite of myself.