In these first foundational steps of a major project, the Holy Spirit keeps giving me a “heart check-up.” I won’t trust anyone (especially myself) who doesn’t admit an internal and continual battle against the flesh. Years and a variety of experiences have prepared me for such a time as this, thus it’s very easy to trust in my flesh. So in His mercy, God have me some reminders this morning:
- His wisdom brings peace not confusion.
- What is my real motivation?
- God resists the proud.
- He must be my source of confidence.
God’s wisdom brings peace:
Confusion is the fruit of earthly wisdom and will always produce confusion, striving and division. Self-seeking is the bane of ministries.
James 3: 13-17: Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
What is my real motivation?
Christian ministry can be a deceiving mistress. Everything sounds and even looks so pure and selfless. But the Holy Spirit burns God’s jealousy within us challenging our motivations. Am I building my kingdom or His?
James 4:1-5: Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”?
Humilty is key to God’s grace and favor:
Humility is not a gift of the Spirit but a fruit of the Spirit. We are to humble ourselves (sometimes God has to give us a “little” nudge. Worship, focusing on Him, will always put our lives into perspective.
- Seeing the holiness of our Savior Jesus
- Reveals the horror of our sin
- Leads to the humbling of our soul
- Results in the happiness of our salvation
- And the honor of our service.
James 4: 6: But He gives more grace. Therefore He says:
“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”
God alone is our confidence
The flesh is so strong when we are faced with a challenge, large or small. In fact, it’s the small ones which are so easily overcome by our flesh attempts. But large or small, all our confidence must be rooted and grounded in God’s love. Remember this was the song Jesus sang just hours before His crucifixion. How can we do any less?
Psalm 118:7-9: The Lord is for me among those who help me;
Therefore I shall see my desire on those who hate me.
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.
O Abba, thank You for Your Holy Spirit which pierces my heart by Your Word. Jesus, You have broken the power of sin and delivered me from “this body of death.” Thank You for Your promise to conform me to Your image and to a completion Your work in, through, by and for me. Please keep me on a short leash that I cannot stray too far from You. You are my all.