Saturday, January 24, 2015
January 24 – Run to find Him
For those who live according to the flesh have their outlook shaped by the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their outlook shaped by the things of the Spirit. (Romans 8:5 NET)
For all the millions of dollars that the self-help industry has generated, what is it that people most want? To break out of negative mental habits and become happy and productive. Conventional wisdom says that better jobs, better marriages, better kids, better finances, better everything starts with the right perspective and the ability to stick to it. But what trips up most people? No one knows what the “right perspective” is, since absolute right and wrong is considered narrow minded. And those who think they’ve got it figured out rarely stick to it anyway.
This is not just a picture of non-believers, it’s become the norm among Christians. How many sit in church services with a horrible sense of guilt and shame? Some have hidden addictions, immoral desires, secret affairs, sins and weaknesses that condemn them every day. And it’s not like they want to indulge their flesh with no concern for God. So many deeply wish they could rid themselves of their shame, but when it comes time to resist, they have no strength.
When you rely on the strength of your flesh, your mindset will always be skewed, your emotions will always be tampered with by evil, and you will always fall right back into what you hate. Christians who exert great effort into running from sin and running from temptation are only partially getting it right. Instead of running away, it’s time to run to something powerful and real. It’s time to run to the Spirit of God, run to the one who can totally change your outlook, your vision, and your entire being.
Think about the many chances every day holds to run to God, to hear from Him, to commune with His Spirit and to obey His urgings, but you’d rather fill your head with music written by people possessed with the spirit of this world. Why? Because the spirit of anger or loneliness or selfishness in those songs bonds with the spirits inside of you – and you like how that feels. Or maybe you’d rather browse through random messages on Facebook and take whatever senseless quiz appears just to escape your frustrated life. You want peace, assurance and joy, but you fill your time with things that drive you further from any of it. When temptations come, no wonder you have no strength to resist. You live by your flesh, but want supernatural strength.
God’s promise is that if you live for the Holy Spirit, your whole outlook will change, and the Holy Spirit will empower you from on high (Luke 24:29). The exhausting struggle with sin will no longer be an issue, because you will be made a new creature. It’s all in the choices you make day after day. Run to Him. The Fast of Daniel is coming. Get alone with God and His word. Run with all your strength to find Him, know Him and hear Him and watch how everything will change.