Some thoughts I was working on yesterday as I have been reading through “What Every Man Wishes His Father Had Told Him”. I read the chapter on the gospel and the main point of the message in that chapter was that we can’t work our way out of anything.
The author noted something that men are so guilty of-trying harder to be better. He hits it right on the head with this statement-“We say try harder. The cross says repent of trying.” We are guilty of trying to make God happy, trying harder to defeat sin in our lives. Trying harder to run from the things that so easy defeat us. We get this mentality through our manhood. Everywhere we are taught that we are supposed to be able to win the fight, be the strongest, toughest, never back down, never admit defeat and because of this we are destroyed when we find that we can’t defeat sin on our own. We are humiliated when we discover we are completely powerless to win that battle. So we do what any soldier would do-hide.
No soldier wants to be the one found not having the strength or courage to face the opponent, so we hide. The one thing that could help us defeat our greatest adversary is the one thing we run from.
We must open our eyes and recognize that to win this fight, we’ve got to stop fighting.
Our fight is won in the cross of Jesus Christ, but the problem.
What the heck does that mean? I’ve heard people tell me that my whole life-it’s settled at the cross of Christ or just focus on the cross. How am I supposed to focus on the cross of Christ and still live my life? How does the cross make it easier for me to live today?
This is all a mind thing.
In fact, the battles for freedom take place in your mind.
How much of your mind would you readily be willing to share to anyone in your life? I would imagine not very much of it. There are things to take place in our minds that God forbid they should ever see the light of day or be heard by anyone and that is what scares us.
The bible says from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. How did all that crap get in there? Truth is, we allowed it to get in…Because we stopped focusing on the cross. We were grateful to allow the Cross to save us, we recognized that problem right away. God I’m a sinner in need of a Savior but after that I can take it from there. Thanks for the salvation but I think I’ve got this life thing down. I mean lets face it, Jesus was only on the earth for 30 some years, we’ve got more experience than He does at this thing.
That’s where we go wrong. We think we do understand how to make this work. We think we have what it takes to succeed and to fight the daily battles we face. But we don’t and we never will.
Focusing on the cross is what Paul said in Galatians 5.24-“Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified their own sinful selves. They have given up their old selfish feelings and the evil things they wanted to do.” But again, how and what in the world does it mean to crucify my sinful self?
Romans 6 says that my sinful self died on the cross with Jesus and that I was raised to new life with him also, but if that’s true why do I still have the desire to do what I want to do? Why can’t this just be a little bit easier to handle, to manage? Thankfully I’ve got Romans 7 also and the struggle that Paul had with the same thing. Lets face it, if the Apostle Paul stubbled with this stuff, I don’t feel so bad anymore.
This is what I am wrestling with in my mind over the past few days. Something I want to teach my crew. Something I want to teach the guys in my church.
Fighting is dying.