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STAYING THE COURSE

Hey all :)


Philippians 1:4-6, Paul & Timothy are writing to the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, and it says, "Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I am certain that God, who began a good work within you, will continue His work until the day Christ Jesus returns" (NLT).


I think it's interesting that, so often, we run with God for awhile - and then once life picks up - we begin believing this lie that we have to be the one to maintain the fire that God started in us.


We start falling into discouragement if we feel our fire fading and we say things like, "I'm so busy and I barely have time to think about God," or "I want to stay on track with Jesus, but I'm losing steam." These thoughts are valid, but I've been thinking that maybe they are leading us down the wrong path...?


Philippians 1 suggests that instead of asking questions like, "When can I make time for God?" , or "How can I maintain a fire for Him?"

The questions can be, "Do I desire to be in tune with His presence every single hour?" and

"Am I willing to pray even the smallest prayer in the morning that invites him into the rest of every moment to come?"


The fact is this - once God's foot is in the door of our hearts, He desires to invade all of it. He desires to make our lives better. He wants to impact us with His wisdom, love, peace, and joy because He knows all of those things will then overflow into our mission, relationships, jobs, schooling, family life, mental health -- etc.


Here's the thing about God though: even though He wants to be involved in every aspect of our lives - He doesn't force it. This is what makes the one true God different than so many other gods that people serve.


Our God desires relationship. Therefore, He doesn't choose to just invade our lives and take over every department UNLESS we invite Him to. He wants invited because an invitation is what indicates mutual love.


With all this in mind - our faith will remain compartmentalized for as long as we want it to.


In other words, it's unrealistic of us to expect God's kindness and provision to invade the parts of our lives that, most days, we don't mind him being absent from. The parts of our lives that feel more fun when we don't think about Him. Or the parts that we know aren't helping us grow closer to Him, but have just been part of who we are for so long.


I wonder if we'd actually end up experiencing more God if we'd recognize that our relationship with Him doesn't have to be maintained by our own strength and efforts UNLESS we aren't willing to surrender ourselves to His strength and efforts.


If we don't want to give God every hour of our day, then yes, we are putting ourselves in the position to try and maintain a relationship with Him in our own timing and efforts.

But if we want to give God every hour of our day, then we don't have to strive - because the Spirit will do the work. We just have to be okay if He leads us somewhere that we didn't plan on going, or nags us to say something that we didn't plan on saying.

Is this making sense? Maybe I'm rambling.


Essentially, i'm wondering if when we find ourselves feeling the pressure to somehow maintain our passion for the Lord, it might just be an indicator that we need to become more fully surrendered to Him.


Think about it: the moment we surrender control is the moment that He who began a good work in us will carry it on to completion. If we don't continuously give up control, then He who began a good work in us will have a more difficult time carrying it out. Not because He's not good at carrying things out, but because He lovingly & patiently waits for us to desire His intervention.

 

What's the good news? A flame He lights will only be maintained longterm by His Spirit and truth - which means we can stop stressing and striving to be the one who keeps the flame lit.

What's the hard news? In order to stop feeling that pressure, we really do have to give up a compartmentalized faith and constantly surrender and re-surrender ourselves to His lead.


If we trust God, then giving Him control can be comforting. Romans 8:28 says, "...God works all things together for the GOOD of those who love Him, who have been called according to his purpose."


We have to STAY THE COURSE, and keep believing that His Spirit is at work every hour of every day!! He is placing people in our path that need loved! He is speaking to us through individuals whether they know it or not! He is revealing Himself to us through creation and nature! He is giving us gut feelings that might prevent us from trouble! He is whispering truth when the world around us is screaming lies!!!

 

He's always there - trying to carry to completion the good work He began in you.

My prayer lately, for all of us in Christ Jesus, has been, "Lord, may we loosen our grip for control and may the Spirit continue the work he began in all of us."


Hope this acts as a loving reminder, or even just encourages you to trust God & stay the course with Jesus.

Much love!

In this together!

For His glory and our good!! <3




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