Romans 8:8 “Those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God.”
When I’m bored is when I’m most susceptible to be controlled. My mind is essentially looking for something to keep me occupied and that’s where I’m the most vulnerable. I should turn to God’s Word and start reading, but I think the sinful nature within me isn’t so inclined to do so in those moments. The sinful nature within me is the root of my problem and the source of my temptation.
So who’s controlling me in those moments? It’s not the Spirit within me. It’s my sinful nature. It’s strong enough to control my mind and my desires. I need a plan to start weakening my desires to sin; everyone does. I need to be so filled with God’s Word and His Spirit that there is no room left in my soul for anything but God’s presence.
Romans 12:1-2 “Therefore I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good pleasing and perfect will.”
Transforming your mind isn’t easy. It’s not like people can ask God to take away every pornography image that has ever been burned into their brain. I mean, all things are possible through Christ who strengthens me, but the more probable approach is by a diligent pursuit of God’s heart, his word, and a relationship with the Spirt that he placed inside of you. I’m still in the beginning stages of transforming my mind, and let me tell you, it’s a daily struggle. The flesh is constantly heading down the wrong path, and it takes constant action to lean into God and trust that his way is the right way.
Romans 7:4 “So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God.”
That’s kind of our mission in life after we have accepted Jesus Christ as our personal savior right? It’s to bear fruit for God. What’s the fruit of your life right now? I can tell you right now that my fruit isn’t the best tasting right now. I’m still struggling with lustful thoughts and a terrible attitude toward my boss at work. I know that I’m not walking like Jesus through the halls at work when my boss says something that gets under my skin. Granted, I’ve come a long way since I first started working there, but I still have a long way to go.
I could say that my actions/fruit as of lately has been getting up to read the Word of God every day; which has been true 6 out of the 7 days of the week. But it means nothing for my walk if I’m not letting it root deeply into my heart to start changing it. I still get home after work and feel the distance from God. So, my fruit is meaningless if I’m not letting it actually change my life.
What fruit is God calling you to produce? What does He want it to taste like, and what actions are you taking to make it taste just right? I can tell you that my fruit is called to taste like missions and YouTube. I know that deep down in my heart. I know that God has coached me to have this marketing skill that needs to be used for His glory some day. I know that He wants me to live out the final commission that is written in Matthew 28:18-20. He’s calling each of us to do that, but I am starting to get an understanding of exactly what that looks like in my life.
So, what am I doing about it? What am I doing that is getting in the way of my calling? I can tell you that lustful thoughts are getting in the way of true communication between me and God, one that will last all day and not just during the time I dedicate to Him in the morning. I can tell you that my own selfish goals are getting in the way of listening to the true calling He has placed on my life.
I think we all, especially me, need to start making a serious investment into developing the fruit that tastes just right to God.
When I think about my life 7 months ago, I would have easily embraced the concept of living the life of a traveling follower of Jesus Christ. I think there needs to be more pastors out there that are going out into the world exposing what is being done. I don’t even know what is being done out there myself, because all I have to go off of is the stories I hear from the few pastors that have gone to India, and Haiti, and have reported back all of the destruction and disgust that results from countries that neglect God and embrace the devil.
What would my life look like if I were to adopt this lifestyle. Deep down I know that God is placing that calling on my life, so what am I going to do about it? Like it says in Matthew 7:21, only those who do the will of the Father in heaven will enter the kingdom of God. So what’s the point of doing anything else?
I think I need to allow God to give me vision for the calling that he has placed on my life. There are big changes for me in 2017, so I’m going to need to rely on God to steer my life in the right direction.