13 Mar Attending to the Inner Life
What happens to you is not as important as what happens in you.
Too often we spend time and resources on what happens to us rather than what happens in us. It is right to expect good things to happen to us but it is what happens in us that will determine what happens to us on a long run. Now we need to be reaching out and our growth goals should reflect the increase we anticipate in every area of our life and ministry. If we are going to stand the test of time we are going to keep an eye on what is happening in us.
What are your priorities? Is God your Number one? What is your motivation? Is it selfish or self-centred. What is your focus? What is the fuel you are burning to do what you are doing? Is merely emotional or spiritual? What about integrity of heart? Humility? Sincerity? Do you have the balance between principles and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit? You should have goals that will cause things to happen for you, employ the principles but please don’t forget to keep an eye on what is happening inside. It is the lack of keeping an eye on what is happening inside us that has brought us to the place where we tolerate idols of materialism and have other Gods beside Jehovah. Things are more important to us than our relationship with God. Bible says ’little children keep yourselves from idols ’1 John 5:21 amplified says…of idols… anything that will occupy the place in your heart due to God. All the carnality that is distorting the testimonies of Christians today is because these things creep up on us almost unawares. We need to keep ourselves from idols and put God first in our everyday life.
In 2 Kings 4, we read the story of Gehazi the servant of Elisha, How he was not able to exercise authority delegated to him. He was given the rod of his master to go do what he was instructed to do but didn’t get results. Something was happening in his heart, even with the presence of such a powerful prophet like Elisha what was happening in his heart did not stop or change as a result of what was happening around him. In verse 27 we read that he thrust the woman away who was clinging to the feet of the prophet. Why? Was he annoyed at her or was there an offence in his heart against the man of God? Could there be any reason why the rod did not work in his hand? We are not just speculating because; he showed his true colour in Chapter 5 of 2 Kings. After Naaman was healed he craftily went behind to receive from Naaman what his master had turned down. What was happening in him? He was not loyal to his boss and must have looked at the action of the boss in a funny way.
Who was he serving? What was his focus? What was his motive? Deceived people deceive others. When you are self-deceived you are very dangerous. James says if we are not doers of the Word we deceive ourselves. Be a prompt doer of the Word so you won’t be self deceived. If you are self-deceived you don’t need Satan to work on you, he is getting all the help he needs. In Mark 14:10 Judas went to betray Jesus after a woman broke an alabaster of ointment on Him. Other accounts say Satan entered him. So we know that offences open the door for Satan to come in. It is one thing to be offended it is another thing to allow the offence be the basis for your actions. Disagreements over opinions lead to betrayal of covenant friendship. Is there a similarity between Judas and Gehazi?
What then is the right attitude or inner life? Philippians 2:16 – Jesus was selfless, secure and submissive.
Selfless (verses 3-4); these areas represent places where we fall for the tricks of the enemy. It is like if we don’t fend for ourselves no one would look out for us. It is an attitude and a mind-set. We are told to renew our minds with God’s Word in Romans 12:1-2.
Jesus was secured in his relation to God and Himself, verses 6 and 7.
He was submissive, verse 8. It takes selflessness and a sense of security to be submissive. Without the first two the last one will be difficult. To learn the Principle and the spirit of submission becomes a major issue if we are going to run the race successfully.
Submission is one of the operating principles of God’s Kingdom. It has become a very difficult subject because of prevailing mind sets and possible implications and generally how the flesh views the subject. The following will help you in submission:
- Take your place and be secured in your God given place and role. God’s Word defines your boundaries in the phase of your life that you are in right now. Whatever your role or place in life now is not to be viewed as a measure of your worth or value but an opportunity to demonstrate your worth and value within the context of God’s will for your life. If you are faithful now greater things will be revealed in , and through you. Your present place is God’s way of ordering your life to build character in you and sharpen your gifts in Him. Do not despise your present place in God. If you love and trust Him, He will give our wisdom and insights that will bless the world because you took your place in the right spirit. The whole world is waiting to learn from you how living within His boundaries for your life you enjoyed life to its fullest. Now there will be possible misunderstandings, your attitude will make the difference.
- Seek to be a blessing, a giver not a taker. God wants to make you great and His process includes developing His kingdom characteristic in you. Blessing others in your position is the surest way to being mightily blessed. His greatness must be within His boundaries. You have a contribution to make to your generation. It is only as you take your place that your contribution can impact your world. Be a builder not a destroyer.
- Learn to celebrate the success of others, both those above and below you. Don’t lust after power or what others have. Genuinely rejoice with them. It is part of being selfless. God’s promotion is not man’s type. Whenever you do things right in integrity of heart you are promoted in God without any outward sign showing. The greatest in the Kingdom is the servant of all. The man under authority had faith that Jesus called great. Faith is of the heart, Envy and jealousy affect the productivity of faith.
- Learn to be content with your lot in life. Being content is not being complacent. It is an attitude of gratitude no matter your state. It is being positive because of your relationship with Him who can change all things and He is living in you. Get busy drawing on the resources that God has deposited in you instead of despairing about the external conditions that are not convenient. You grow and learn more from those times than at any other time. so get busy growing and learning. Be busy with God drawing out the resources in Him.
- Don’t try to correct everything at once. Wait for the right timing when the relationship has been built on trust and friendship. Really if you are busy with the right things some if not all you wanted to correct gets corrected by God in a better and smoother way than you can come up with.
- Stop negative tongue work. Bless and not curse. If you must do any talking about something that bother you, talk to God first and let Him instruct you on how to go about the issues. Trust Him to help you with timing to talk if you have to and make things right for you. Don’t take things in to your hands to fight for yourself alone. Let Him fight for you.
- Wait on God. He sees the big picture. You have a place in his program; it is a place of prominence but wait on Him to work things out. You are to trust and obey. Yes, work with whatever ideas He gives you. Keep enjoying your fellowship with Him .Your future is in His Hands and I can assure you He knows what He is doing, Knows where you are and He is the best one to handle your future. Get rid of the prideful, selfish spirit that pollutes destinies and destroys God connections.
May the Lord bless you, enlarge your coast, let his hand be upon you and keep you from every evil, amen.