Have you faced death to self – the crucifixion of your soul? Only if you have, will you see life and living in its true perspective. Only then will a peculiar nobility, with its roots in humidity be displayed in you.. as a stately strand of godly meekness, ribbons through into your entire character. Death to self often comes through suffering and there are two outcomes of suffering.
A man’s heart and soul may be perfected through suffering – or suffering may make that same man’s soul bitter and rebellious. For through suffering we come to an end of self – to the extremity of me – or, through that same suffering selfishness may increase as “I” takes control – and God, not the old sin nature is blamed for the problems and pain that engulf us.
We must eventually become disappointed and disillusioned with all self-effort, if we are to not to become disappointed and disillusioned in God – but one of the other will happen. The moral calibre of man is displayed in his everyday conduct and activity. In simple, commonplace tasks and in social gatherings and activities.
A man’s character is displayed in his words and in his attitudes. A man’s spiritual temperature is not displayed in public prayers or preaching, but at the supermarket checkout, the restaurant table, behind a steering wheel! – at the end of a telephone.
A man’s profound, solitary spiritual life is between himself and God alone, but life’s superficial activities may replace a Christ-centred life with a self-centred one, Am I willing to permit God to dominate both my profound and shallow activity? Am I prepared to allow Him to influence both spiritual and superficial things?
It was once written… No one ever becomes spiritual without being fanatical for a season. The shallow intercourse of our lives falls away and people object to us, because if we are right then they are wrong. It is the swing of the pendulum to the opposite extreme of what the life used to be. This is a pretty tough truth to swallow, but something we should all think about.
My “right hand” may be the thing that makes me delightful to other people.. and yet Jesus said, “If your right hand causes you to stumble in your walk with me then cut it off!” The maimed stage is only for a season – but remember- we are in the season of the Lord’s return. And remember that Jesus is coming at a time you think not, 'Therefore be ye also ready.. for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh'.
'Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour 1Peter 5:8 Satan hath desired to have YOU, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for you…' Luke 22:31
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