Sunday, January 26, 2014

Believing God

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. (Hebrews 11:6 NIV)

I prayed about this and gave it to you already God, remember? Why am I still struggling with this area of my life? Then there comes the voice, “You wimp, you fell again, you will never be a strong Christian!" Do you ever find your mind being attacked again and again by the same old thought patterns leading to the same undesirable behaviors? You just can’t seem to shake them, leading to greater frustration because you and God have already dealt with this right? 

Guess what, you’re in a battle! This spiritual warfare thing is not to be taken lightly. Evil wants to take you out because you are a threat when you try to serve and obey God! What a beautiful thing to be viewed as a threat by Satan. That means you are one powerful force and he knows it. His time is short and you are making it harder for him when you daily follow the purposes of God in your life by faith. That's why the Bible tells Christians not to be surprised by the fiery trials you're facing, it comes with the territory of being a disciple. 

You are facing the wind head on and going against the ways of the world, destroying works of evil with the love of Jesus Christ! Evil, and its friend called your flesh, will always try to have you focus on self rather than the love of Christ. Those thoughts contrary to God and His truth will always attempt to disguise themselves as truth. But we are not ignorant of the enemy’s tactics and we know he is nothing but a liar and deceiver. The Bible says he is the very father of lies! You see, I believe one of Satan’s best cards he plays is the one that attempts to convince the believer that he does not really exist and that our battle is against each other instead of his principalities, powers and dominions of darkness.

And because faith is the very catalyst that propels the power of God in your life, guess what Satan wants to steal from you? You got it, your faith! He also wants your joy because the joy of the Lord is your strength. Keep fighting because you will never be defeated in Christ. Refuse to give in to the lies of the enemy. Take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. Choose to believe God’s truth. You can believe God for great things and that is what you must do to win this battle. Read His word as if it is your daily bread because you will be weak and starving spiritually without it. 

I'm preaching to the choir here on this one! 

Another thing, you're going to have to Choose Joy. Happiness is unfortunately constricted to what’s happening while joy is something you can choose to experience despite the circumstance and trial you are in. Do you recall how Jesus was able to do so many great miracles in the lives of everyday people he encountered? He said it was according to their faith! Yes, he had the power, but they had to exercise their faith in Him. Maybe this is a lesson you have heard a million times, but regardless you need to learn it again.

Every time we lay something down before the Lord, Satan and our own flesh is going to make every opportunity to try and get us to pick it back up again. Just point your finger of authority at him and say, "I've laid this down already and I am NOT picking it up again in the name of Jesus!" Even if you do pick it back up, just remind yourself that you have already given it to God, it’s not a part of who you are anymore and put it down! Focus on the truth that you are a new creation. Old things have passed away and all has become new. Repeat to yourself over and over and over if you have to..."I believe YOU God, I believe YOU God!" Sometimes we have to choose to believe God because our feelings most of the time will not cooperate. But if you keep trusting and waiting on God, the feelings of faith will come. 

I have come to realize that at every moment of every day we have to choose whom we are going to serve and believe. I believe God today! Every day that you choose to trust God and walk in His ways, you will become stronger. It may sound simple, but it’s so powerful. His word says He puts before us each day blessings and curses and He desires for us to choose life that we might be free. Once you perceive your need for Him and realize even more deeply your dependence upon Christ, then you will begin to experience the joy that is only full from ABIDING in HIM!

"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father's commands and I remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. John 15:10-13

Reflection Points:
God cannot work on anything you withhold from Him. What have you withheld from God?

If your brother or sister in Christ was having trouble believing God in some of the same areas you struggle to have faith in, what would you say to him or her? Could you not do the same for yourself?

Have you considered the power in your words? Maybe your words and thoughts left unguarded have something to do with your struggle to believe God? Consider your thoughts and words, what you both do and do not say.

Power Verses:
If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?
Matthew 6:30

Some men brought to him a paralytic, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.”
Matthew 9:2

Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed from that moment.
Matthew 9:22

My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power.1 Corinthians 2:4-6

Yet Abraham did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God. Romans 4:20

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