Is my final destination determined by who I follow on social media, by who I trust, or who I call on in times of trouble? What voice am I listening to? TRUTH is CONSISTENT and today is the day, to examine my heart and mind while I still can. Who is governing my thoughts? The media or me? God gave us the responsibility to determine if we are living according to our passions, pleasures and selfish ways. We are reminded in Scripture “I am the Light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the Light of life.” John 8:12 —- Examine the BELIEF adopted about what the LIGHT of life is? Determine if you are walking in step with the Spirit? If I can easily indulge my fleshly desires without a prick of guilt, then I am not walking in the Spirit. No person knows me like my Father and nobody is closer to me than the indwelt Holy Spirit. He knows if I envy others. So when I feel jealous of what others own, accomplish or enjoy, do I feel His nudge to confess? Does my speech, day-to-day reflect a consistent focus on honoring God? Do I seek the approval of man or God? Does my life bear the fruit of the Spirit? Will I hear Jesus say “I never knew you” or will Jesus say “well done my faithful servant”. Do I simply cherry pick the scriptures to satisfy my spiritual appetite, or do I dine on the full banquet of God’s Word to satisfy His purpose and plan for my life? “And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God.” John 17:3 My personal prayer for more fruit of the Spirit. Lord Jesus in Your holy name I pray that the Holy Spirit helps me to love as You love. I ask that You increase my JOY so that I truly delight in Your Presence and gladly obey. Lord, give me cause to exercise patience daily. Holy Spirit, convict me when any bitterness, envy, pride, jealousy or criticisms rise up in me that i may confess quickly and be restored to peace. Give me ears to hear what the Spirit is saying that I may keep in step with the Holy Spirit and maintain His peace in the midst of difficult times. Enable me to be kind to mean spirited people. Increase my ability to control my tongue and my appetite to be right, or to be admired. I am convicted to forgive myself frequently, therefore, as God has already forgiven me, I forgive myself. My Father requires that I love my neighbor as I love myself without envy or jealousy. With my whole heart, body mind and soul, I genuinely desire to please God. Lord, reveal clearly any area where i am self-deceived. I am truly sorry for being selfish and reluctant to obey.Forgive me for my stubbornness to fully submit to the Spirit. Forgive me for my prideful self-promotion. Help me to release all bitterness that keeps me prisoner to the evil ones way of destroying my capacity to live “in Christ”. Help me to mature and easily submit to He who is ‘in me’. LIFE is short, and ETERNITY is long. Lord here I am, use me. Help me to walk in step with the Spirit. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
Remember Paul also wrote to the church “For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.” Mark 7:21 Coveting is to envy what people have or their ways. When I consider what the Bible says, I am reminded that God did choose what is foolish, or what appears to be clumsy, or falling apart in the world to shame the wise; and our Father also chose what is weak in the ways of the world to shame the strong. We live in a generation that has been influenced by the airwaves to believe that we have the right to do whatever we want. The Liar of all lies laughs loudly as we agree and fight the Spirit of God in rebellion. “You do not need church or the Bible, just go to the beach, relax and glory in all of creation.” God gives us a choice. To believe Him, or to believe the Liar! We have the responsibility to exercise self-control while living in this fallen world. We have the right to choose to live according to our desires and to honor our rights and please ourselves. We can also choose to honor God, run the race and endure hardships for His glory. We exercise our free will to trust and obey His law, His way, His will. The most brilliant of mind without self-control, manifests pride and creates within himself a rebellious spirit. Our prisons are full of people who broke the law because they went beyond their constitutional right and stole, killed and lost their freedom. Self made people with tremendous bank accounts are impoverished of soul without self-control. With great freedom and wealth many people choose drugs, alcohol, and extra marital affairs to fill their emptiness. Fame and power without self-control is a ticket to self-destruct. Napoleon was powerful, where does he spend eternity? Hitler was powerful, but his lack of self-control led him to commit suicide. Your self-control is a target of Satan. The battle is not your parents fault, or the governments intervention. The battle is with the person you see in the mirror. The civil war began in the garden of Eden, when everything was perfect. Adam and Eve were lured to taste and see that the world was good. A person may have success in making money, in building a business, or in leading others, but if they cannot control self, in the end, know that fame and all human accomplishments do not matter to God. The Bible says that the heart is deceitful above all things, who can know it? God knows! In our soul, in our selfish nature, we strongly desire to satisfy our flesh. It is that which is in us that causes us to do things that are contrary to the Word of God. The Bible says that we need protection, that we are to put on the full armor of God because there is an ongoing battle for our souls. Satan is the Prince of Darkness and his objective is to rob, to kill, and to destroy your faith and trust in God. Olympic athletes strive to win the gold, they prepare by subjecting themselves to intense self-discipline, self-denial, and the strict government of their appetites. They guard their hours of sleep, they put themselves through rigorous physical tests every day. They willingly endure excruciating exercise routines hour after hour, day after day, month after month until they come to the great competition. They perform at their very best to win the race before them. As believers we are expected to endure pain, persecution as we battle to run the race before us…and it takes self-control. The word endurance means stay at it, do not give up, keep going, keep praising God in all things. We are to stop whining and grumbling about the forces of evil. We are to take our stand, for Christ’s sake and keep going until we are face to face in His glory. The victory is ours, if we STOP crawling around and allow the Spirit of God to change us. We have Jesus and the Holy Spirit battling for us, and praying for us even as we sleep. We must control our appetites, our affections, thoughts, our dispositions, attitudes and speech. Self-control is one of the nine fruits of the spirit. Sermons are rare about it because the people don’t like to take responsibility for controlling themselves. We pray that the Holy Spirit takes us over and does it for us. People blame their parents, the system, their church, but they do not consider self-denial or that they shift the blame to themselves. Look at the boneyard of human history of great people. Moses, the lawgiver of Israel, the Prophet who wrote the first five books of the Bible. Moses who talked face-to-face with God, this major-league man allowed his anger to get out of control. With great frustration he struck the rock with anger, the water came out, and the people praised Moses instead of the Lord. Moses got the glory for it so after 40 years of obedience, this out-of-control outburst kept Moses from seeing the Promised Land. Yes, it is important that we control our anger, our lusts, our desires! What area of your life is out of control? What does your flesh crave? It is our responsibility to admit that we are out of control. David was a mighty warrior, a king, a man with everything, he killed a lion, he killed Goliath but his last lust for a woman destroyed his reason and he murdered Uriah. David could control the kingdom but not himself. “The sword will never depart from your house”. Translation: God loves you David God, but God is going to paddle your britches till the day you die. Absalom his son became a traitor, David’s army were killed, David’s other son raped his daughter, David’s baby with Bathsheba died, why? God disciplines those He loves, and David was reaping the reward of his lack of self-control. Samson couldn’t control himself. Samson conquered the Philistines, but he could not control his lust. Esau sold his inheritance for a bowl of chili.
Lord God asked Moses why do you cry? Why are you so burdened? Anybody can praise the Lord after the victory has come, anyone can dance when the prayers have been answered. What about facing the darkness, what about facing a future that we can’t understand? I have kind of argued with the Lord at times. “Lord, I don’t feel like praying, or singing. Can’t you give us some slack.” God rebukes us many times in the Bible. “where is your faith? Why such unbelief? Why do you cry, why are you weeping, did not all My miracles inspire more faith in Me?” Get up and walk in the Spirit with faith and obedience because you trust Me. Take a stand like Job did. “Thou you slay me I am going to trust God!” This generation demands a song. We cannot be taken captive by Satan as he stops us with a spirit of fear! Fear of being rejected, fear of being wrong, fear that we will be persecuted if we speak the Word of God or share the Gospel. We cannot produce the JOY of GOD without surrendering our ways to the Holy Spirit. There is a time for weeping and rest. Our God puts a song in our heart when we face hard times. This generation needs a song, the people are so empty and confused by the news, the politics, the trends of sex trafficking. The emergency wards in hospitals are full of people who are desperate for God. They do not want a sermon, these hurting people want to witness the Joy of the Lord in the midst of a regular person who has suffered much but still smiles as the Light of the Lord lifts their faith. Our will has to be involved no matter how dark no matter how unbelievable it gets there has to be something rise up in us that offers real HOPE for others. The hurting world questions whether our God can take us through any trial. They wonder if Jesus is a fable, or if we have been given over to foolishness when we say Jesus lives! Our loving Father and the blessed comforting Holy Spirit dwelling within us pricks us “are you gonna believe Me now even when what you see seems impossible. Are you gonna trust Me with what I am doing in the realm of the unseen on your behalf? Do you think you will arrive in heaven at the throne of God with a backpack stuffed with doubt and unbelief? Our will MUST rebuke the spirit of fear, doubt and unbelief with the authority we have been given by God. We cannot represent God well in this world as we hang our heads low in utter hopelessness for what is on the nightly news. When we face the giants, when we suffer losses, when we lose our job, or a precious loved one, or hit the wall of brokenness, we must trust in God before the victory comes! “Joy in the morning comes with fresh mercies!” Our faith will be tested and that is a promise from God. We need to be that testimony to the unsaved, to the one who is going through it. When we get into self-pity and begin to complain, we must remember that unless we get in step with the Spirit and learn the lesson, we will face more trials, more tests. David Wilkerson asked God “ What do you really want to say to this congregation what are you really wanting me to pour out as your instrument?” There are many attending churches around the globe that are bound by the spirit of fear. a spirit of fear. What we must do as believers is to take a stand. Our will must be engaged in our battle to victory! We must boldly speak to the tormenting spirit who is luring your into a pit of despair. Our Father said that He did NOT give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of love and power and a sound mind. The Holy Spirit is saying God has led you and I through trials and tests just as He led the nation of Israel. We must lay a tight grip onto this truth. We cannot get out of the pit of despair and fear until we take a stand for “Christ in us, His hope for glory!” When you’re tired of all the voices but you stand up and say “NO to the devil with the authority almighty God bestowed upon you!” Knowing that the devil has unleashed principalities and powers of darkness and evil spirits, millions of evil spirits are loose in the land right now! The devil is looking at anyone who is lingering in self-pity and fear of what will happen to them. He uses fear to drag people down. When your friends around you can’t bring you out and you’re going down into that dungeon of NO HOPE, beloved understand it’s a spirit from the evil one! You must declare that Your heavenly Father has kept ALL of His promises and that He has kept you safe with His hand, and He still has His hand on you! His eye is on you and God has never taken away the Holy Spirit from you. The test is to trust Him in whatever storm you are in. We choose to DIE to our flesh, to our worry, to our fear with a bold stand of BELIEF in “He who is in me, is greater than he who is in the world.” We must NOT allow the devil to trample through our mind. We are sons and daughters of the Most High. We have been given the power to cast our evil spirits. It is our choice to BELIEVE and TRUST and OBEY GOD and use that authority to RISE UP and PRAY in the POWER of the HOLY SPIRIT against the harassment of the evil one. The Bible says we must take a stand and when we resist him he will flee. TRUST the WORD of GOD. The Holy Spirit abiding in you rejoices in your weakness and He is strong as your stand. Paul said it right as he was pounded by messenger from Satan. There are assignments that principalities and powers are under under the command of Satan to bring you down to destroy your faith in God. We have the mind of God, a sound mind ruled by the Holy Spirit! God knows if you take that stand and all the power of Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost are on your side. Some say that is mind over matter, and David Wilkerson reminds us that believing in the Power of God is the Bible over the devil! AMEN “Satan I take authority in Jesus name! Satan I come against you in the power of the blood of Jesus Christ! I command that you flee NOW! I am not ignorant of your plan to destroy my faith in Jesus Christ, and I say with the full power of the Holy Spirit that you return to the pit of hell where you belong! The Living God in me cast you out! In the name of Jesus Christ in the name above every name on earth in heaven, Satan go and flee from my mind, my home, my temple! Depart from my heart and GO in Christ’s name and never return! AMEN The Holy Spirit has accomplished His purpose in this prayer with VICTORY! God delivered me from every evil spirit that’s turned loose in the world right now! I am more than a conqueror through Christ Jesus my Lord! AMEN