Thursday, July 24, 2014

Just a Thought "5"

Relationally, forgiveness is crucial to our maturity, it is the glue that holds the body of Christ together. Instead of insisting on the unity of the mind, we need to preserve the unity by taking the initiative to be the peacemaker in our relationships.

Forgiveness is difficult for us, because it pulls against our concept of justice; we want revenge for offenses suffered, but if we do not let offenders off our hook, we are hooked to them. We need to let go, because the unforgiving believer is yoked to the past or to a person and is not free.

We should not try to rationalize or explain the believer’s behavior, forgiveness deals with our pain, not another’s behavior. Forgiveness is agreeing to live with the consequences of another believer’s wrong, our only choice is whether we will do so in the bitterness of unforgiveness or the freedom of forgiveness.

Forgiveness is a choice, forgetting may be a result of forgiveness, but it is never the means of forgiveness, and when we bring up the past against other, we have not forgiven them. Forgiveness does not mean that we must be a doormat to their continual wrongdoing, it is okay to forgive another’s past wrong, and at the same time, take a stand against future wrongdoing.

The shield of faith does not create reality; the shield of faith responds to reality, because forgiveness is a crisis of the will, a conscious choice to let the other person off the hook and free ourselves, though we may not fell like making this decision, but this is a crises of the will.

We put on the shoes of peace, because we are to forgive as we have been forgiven, and we must base our relationships with others on the same criteria on which God bases his relationship with us: love, acceptance, and forgiveness.

Satan and his forces use unforgiveness more than any other human deficiency to stop our growth and our ministry of reconciliation, unforgiveness toward other believers is the most widespread stronghold they enjoy.

Many of the body of Christ, instead of recognizing that their minds are being peppered by the fiery darts of the enemy, they think the problem is their own fault. “If those foul thoughts are mine, what kind of person am I?” they wonder.

So they end up condemning themselves while the enemy continues their attack unchecked; it is a gradual process of deception and yielding to their subtle influence. By observing us the enemy can pretty well tell what we are thinking, but they do not know what we are going to do before we do it.

They can put thoughts into our mind, and they will know whether we buy their lie by how we behave. If we are gong to resist the enemy, we must do so outwardly so they can understand us and be put to flight. The enemy will invite us to fulfill our physical needs in ways that outside the boundary of God’s will for us.

We cannot expect God to protect us from their influences if we do not take an active part in God’s prepared strategy. Whenever we feel enticed to meet a legitimate physical need by acting independently of God, we are being tempted though the lust of the flesh.

The lust of the eyes subtly draws us away from God and eats away at our confidence in God. We see what the world has to offer and we begin to place more credence in our own perspective of life. The temptation of the pride of life is intended to destroy our obedience to our ministry of reconciliation by urging us to take charge of our own lives.

Escaping temptation is to apprehend every thought as soon as it steps through the doorway of our mind. Every temptation is first a thought introduced to our mind by our own carnality or the enemy themselves. Once we have halted a penetration thought, we need to evaluate it on the basis of Paul’s criterion for what we should think about.

When we learn to respond to tempting thoughts by stopping them at the door of our mind, evaluating them on the basis of God’s word, we have found the way of escape that Paul talks about. When we do not understand the doctrinal truths Paul taught pertaining to our sealed position in Christ, we have no ground for success in the practical arena.

The most dangerous and harmful detriments to our growth is passivity, putting our mind in neutral and coasting, sitting back and waiting for God to do everything is not God’s way to maturity. Our old pattern for thinking and responding to our sin-trained flesh must be transformed by the renewing of our mind, it is our responsibility to change our behavior by putting to death the deeds of the body.

If the enemy can deceive us into believing a lie, they can control our life in that area. We are saints whom God has declared righteous, believing the enemies lie will lock us into a defeated, fruitless life, but believing God’s truth about who we are will set us free.

It is imperative to our growth and maturity that we believe God’s truth about who we are. We must learn how to resolve previous conflicts or the emotional baggage will accumulate as we continue to withdraw from life, the past will control our life as our options for handling it continue to decrease.

Perceiving those events from the perspective of our new identity, which God sealed in Christ, is what starts the process of healing those damaged emotions, because we have the privilege of evaluating our past experience in the light of who we are now, as opposed to who we were then.

When we put on the armor of God, we are really putting on Christ, and when we put on Christ, we take ourselves out of the realm of the flesh, where we are vulnerable to attack, it is not wise for us to live on the enemies level.

Since their primary weapon is the lie, our belt of truth is continually being attacked. If they can disable us in the area of truth, we become an easy target for their other attacks. We stand firm in the truth by relating everything we do to the truth of God’s word, and when we learn to live in the truth on a daily basis, we will grow to love the truth because we will have nothing to hide. 

No comments:

Post a Comment