Fighting the Man Pleasing Spirit

As I briefly mentioned before our Church is watching John Bevere’s Breaking Intimidation movies and while they’ve been very deep and thought provoking I think God is trying to say something specific to me.

From my daily scripture readings this week:

1 The Lord is my light and my salvation—
so why should I be afraid?
The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger,
so why should I tremble? Psalms 27:1

31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? 33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. 34Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us. Romans 8:31-34

I started reading Romans 8 after listening to one of my dad’s old sermons that Brit had posted on the web. (Isn’t amazing that God can still use him to minister to me even after he’s gone home to be with the Lord? My dad would love to hear that.)

From the plaque I received today as part of raffle (lol God so doesn’t do random or coisedence does he?)

“Courage is fear that has said its prayers.”

I think God is trying to tell me something here. All of this really struck home when Pastor Michelle was telling Arielle and I about a conversation she had with someone, and in the midst of that conversation she told the person that he/she had a “Man Pleasing Spirit” and needed to deal with it. What is a man pleasing spirit but a spirit of fear/intimidation? (exactly what everything up above deals with) And while I know that PM wasn’t saying that to me, it felt like it. It really hit my heart. And I realized that this is what God has been trying to get through to me these past couple of weeks. With God’s help I will conquer this spirit and step into the place God has called me to be. (I know beyond a doubt that I couldn’t conquer this without his help)

Fighting Legalism

Satan is called the great deceiver and he certainly earns that name when it comes to legalism. It can be so subtle, it makes you think that you are doing something pleasing to God when in reality you couldn’t be farther from the truth. This article over on boundless really brings that idea home. Here’s an excerpt that really made me think about how I view God’s commands.

Lately, God has been convicting me about living by conviction. I want to live my life according to His ways. David wrote, “And I will delight myself in thy commandments, which I have loved” (Ps. 119:47, KJV). As I live in the reality of salvation and grace, earnestly desiring to draw closer to my Father in heaven, God’s commands should be not just my standard, but my heart’s delight.

later on she says…

It’s interesting that the world defines Christians by several outward standards that are not strictly Christian at all — Christians, I’ve heard, don’t drink or swear, for example. Is it wrong to hold such standards? No, especially if we understand where they are rooted in God’s commands — be filled with the Spirit, not with wine; let your speech be edifying and pure. But it’s important to keep the lines clear between God’s words and human choices concerning them. God has not forbidden drink or the use of rude words in every circumstance.

The words ring in my heart: “I will delight myself in thy commandments.” I can’t delight in God’s Word if I am continually replacing it with my own. God guards few things so jealously as He guards His message to us. After delivering it to His people, He bound them to keep it intact and unembellished: “You shall not add to the word that I command you, nor take from it” (Deut. 4:2).

Oh Lord teach me how to delight myself in thy commandments.

War or the lack thereof (FIGHT!)

How do we define war? Is it nation vs nation, ideology vs ideology, or religion vs religion? Do wars require of the use of guns, tanks, ships, or airplanes? Is a it a war if there are no uniforms for either side? Can you imagine a war with an enemy that is unseen, or war with an enemy that makes no sound? In fact the only way to know where the enemy has been is too look at the path of destruction that he has left behind. Wouldn’t that enemy fill you with fear?

WAKE UP! WE ARE AT WAR!

We are in the midst of war that can’t be seen with our natural eyes or heard with our natural ears. Only the cries of hurt can be heard and only the tears of the ones left behind can be seen. Our enemy’s biggest (and most imponent) weapon is a physical death the power of which was removed by Jesus. The stakes of this war are higher than any war before or after. But that’s not to say that the outcome of the war is at stake, cause this war has already been won. It was won with a tree, three nails, and the death (and resurection) of One truely innocent man.

FIGHT!

The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy. For many he has stolen our joy, killed our loved ones, and destroyed our dreams. If we accept these loses and hide our selves in the fleshly pleasures of this life then the only heaven we will ever know is a man made on here on on earth and not the one made by God. If we merely shake off the slumber the world has put on us and fight. We will regain our lost joy, restore our dreams, and save the ones we love and a whole heck of a lot more. Fight for your loved ones, fight for hope, fight for love, fight for peace.

FIGHT!

The enemy is one willing to negotiate, willing to find any compromise that we will accept. Want to go to church and then come home and watch porn? Sure he would willingly agree to that. Oh I’m sorry that was a little blunt. Ok here’s a better one. Want to go to church and then go out and see that really popular R rated movie? Hey watching that might help us connect to what the world is really going through just say a quick prayer before and after and no worries. God is a forgiving God, he’ll understand. The Enemy knows that any compromise on our part further seperates us from God, increasing the chances of slowly pulling us out of the fight and into a wordly life. A life seperate from God and his promise.

FIGHT!

How many half naked ladies do we have to see on TV before every woman we see is half naked?

FIGHT!

How many times can we hear “Oh my god” (or worse) on TV, in the movies, or in music before we start saying it?

FIGHT!

Had a bad day? Drown it out with a beer or two or three, heck who’s counting?

FIGHT!

How many of us would see a dead body on the street and immediatly think “What would Grissom be looking for here?”, rather than realize that God through his son Jesus has given us the power to raise the dead? 

FIGHT!

Where do these paths lead? To a weak and ineffectual church body as a whole! To congregants who would rather debate when Jesus is comming back rather than save their neighbor (assuming they even know their neighbor’s name).

I’m guilty just as much as the next person. I was saved through cheap grace. And now I’m trying to learn about costly grace. The grace that costs my life, but in return I get true life in Jesus.

FIGHT!

Who am I

Of the twelve spies that Moses sent into the promised land, ten gave a bad report one of fear and human understanding. But two gave a positive report one full of understanding of the might and power of God.

Too often I’ve been in the company of the ten spies, limited by my human wisdom and knowledge.

My prayer is Lord that you will strip away my reliance on my own understanding. Open my eyes to your ways. My strength and my victory come from you. I pray that in everything that I do, whether it be work or spiritual battles, I’ll put my faith in. For all things are possible through Jesus. (Forgive my paraphase.)

Hunger and Thirst

I used to think that when people said things like “hungry for God” or “thirsty for God”, that they were speaking metophorically. I was so very wrong, so very deceived. I think it’s hard to explain to someone who hasn’t experienced it, but it is so very real. I was only given a small glimpse of it before a great war in my spirit began. Sadly it was a war that I was losing for a time, but my Lord is not Lord of defeat, but one of VICTORY!

Lord sustain me with your word! Make your Spirit the water that fills my spirit. Return to a hunger and thirst for You and your rightousness. Take my excessive physical hunger and turn it into a spiritual hunger for the things of you.

Lord purify the desires of my heart.

My Heart’s Cry : Blessings

During the past week, I’ve been reading the book of Genesis. And what really struck me, was the way God led Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to bless their sons and others. So friday night I really had this passion in my heart for God to use me to bless others. It was something deep and a true desire of my heart. I’ve only really experienced that a few times, so I thought I would include it here.

So I ask God, use me Lord to bless others the way you used Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to bless their sons.