Day 53: When You Feel You're Losing Momentum
GETTING YOUR BEARINGS BACK
It can be so disorienting when we give in to temptation. I think at some point when we eventually come to our senses theres a feeling of, "What just happened?" Remember, if you will, back to the very first lesson in this course when we talked about caves. If you have been applying what we've discussed so far, you are well on your way out of the cave. But, when sin finds a way back in, it can feel like our light went out and we can no longer tell up from down. Where do we turn to in moments like this?
Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh. -Romans 13:14
Imagine for a moment that the above verse was written the other way around. In other words, what if it read like this:
Do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh, and clothe yourself with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Many of us (myself included for a long time) get this order wrong, and it makes a world of difference. We first try to fix our lives up before turning to Christ. Our desire works against us: we are fighting a battle that’s already been won. To avoid costly misinterpretations such as this, let us stay committed to keeping scripture in its appropriate context. So what does this mean for us, when temptation has seized us and the light has gone out? We get our bearings back by examining our priorities - we are to first "clothe" ourselves with Jesus. But how do we clothe ourselves with Him?
COURAGE IN THE MIDST OF A RAGING STORM
Paul was under house arrest in Rome for two years awaiting his trial before Ceasar. Death seemed to loom on the horizon for Paul. Shortly after this writing, the apostle Paul was believed to have been beheaded during the reign of Nero. As Paul was contemplating life and death, he came to the realization that no matter where he was, it was always about Christ. In life, he’d preach the gospel and in death he’d be with Christ. Paul had his priorities straight. Despite all of his hardship, despite all of his pain, despite his final days being near, he understood that it all came back to Christ. We "clothe" ourselves with Jesus by abiding in Him. We become a living acknowledgement of all that he has done in and through us. This means recognizing that we are secure with Him, and that he has empowered us to get through whatever challenge faces us.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. -Matthew 6:33
Day 53 Application
What is the significance of the ordering in Romans 13:14?
Can you imagine what your life would be like if you lived with the sort of attitude as depicted in Philippians 4:12-13? What would happen to your struggle with sexual sin?
Is there any aspect or part of your life in which you feel God is absent? How can you be more mindful of God's presence in those moments? What will it take?
What determines whether you are sexually pure or not? Have you remained in accountability such that you have been regularly challenged?