February 27, 2004
Encouragement for Today
Micca Campbell, Assistant Director of certified speakers and Certified Speaker
You have been set free and have become slaves to righteousness…Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death (Romans 6:18, 8:2).
When you became a Christian, were you surprised to find that the struggle with sin was your biggest problem? John says, whom the son sets free is free indeed (John 8:36). If Jesus sets us free from sin, why do we struggle? It is because we believe the lie.
According to Nancy Leigh DeMoss, author of Lies Women Believe, one lie that most women believe is that they cannot live the Christian life free from sin. They are right. By ourselves we can’t live the victorious Christian life. However, through the work of Jesus on the cross, sin is no longer our master. Unfortunately, God didn’t remove our flesh and its desires. Some have argued the reason is because God wants us to love and yield to Him voluntarily. Consequently, our flesh is constantly struggling against the Spirit. Therefore, our outward struggle comes from the war within.
Before you came to Christ and received new life, you could sin and get away with it. You could be angry with your neighbor and let them know it, too! The Spirit of God was not living within, convicting you of your sin. However, once you invited Christ to be Lord of your life, and you got angry with someone, the Spirit of God whispered to your spirit, “Love your neighbor.” The battle is on, and the choice is yours. Will you obey your own desire or the will of God?
Freedom comes when we yield ourselves to the Spirit of God instead of giving in to the desires our flesh. The Spirit of God will always convict you of your sin, but He will not force you to walk in the light of obedience. Sin is not our biggest problem. It is our will. If we will surrender our will to God each day, acknowledging that He is the supreme authority over our lives, and then choose to walk in obedience throughout the day, we will experience victory over sin! I’m not saying you will never sin, but when you are yielded to the Holy Spirit, you have the power not to sin. The result is freedom!
How do you know when you are walking in the light, yielded to God? The proof is in the fruit you bear. Galatians 5:19-23 gives us a way to test our fruit, “When you follow the desires of your flesh, your life will produce sexual immorality, impure thoughts, eagerness for lustful pleasure, idolatry, participation in demonic activities, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, anger, selfish ambition, divisions, feelings that everyone else is wrong but you, envy, drunkenness, wild parties and other kinds of sins.” On the other hand, if you yield to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to control your life, “then He will produce the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
Are you daily allowing the Spirit of God to conquer your sin nature? Nail your passions to the cross and crucify them there. Confess to God that you’ve been the master of your life and crown Him King. Then, follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in every part of your life. Freedom is yours. The battle is won. For whom the Son sets free is free indeed.
My prayer for today:
Dear God, I confess that I have been living life my way. I desire that you be first in my life. I desire that you be king over my thoughts, attitudes, passions, dreams, and actions. Therefore, I surrender my will to you. Please, fill me with your Holy Spirit and live out your nature of love, joy, and peace through me. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Begin by asking God to search your heart for wrong motives. We should not desire freedom or power to produce love, joy and patience because we want to be Godly. We should desire these things because we want God and to please him with our lives. If you truly desire this, confess to him your sin, then surrender your life making Him king over every part. As you get up from your knees, all things will be new.
Are you allowing the Holy Spirit to conquer your sinful nature each day?
How does the Holy Spirit make it easy for you to walk in obedience to God’s will?
When you examine your life, what Godly qualities do you find?
Are there fruits of the flesh in your life that you need to confess? What are they?
Are you living your life to please yourself or God? What’s the evidence?
What can you do today to walk in obedience to God?
Galatians 3:5, I ask you, does God give you the power of the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you as the result of your trying to obey the laws? No, of course not. It is when you believe in Christ and fully trust him. (LBT)
John 8:36, If the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed. (NKJ)
Galatians 6:16, I advise you to obey only the Holy Spirit’s instructions. He will tell you where to go and what to do, then you won’t always be doing the wrong things your evil nature wants you to. (LBT)
Romans 6:6, Your old evil desires were nailed to the cross wit him; that part of you that loves to sin was crushed and fatally wounded, so that your sin-loving body is no longer under sin’s control. (LBT)
Galatians 2:20, I have been crucified with Christ; and I myself no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And the real life I now have within this body is a result of my trusting in the Son of God. (LBT)
Who Holds the Key to your Heart by Lysa TerKeurst
Radically Obedient Radically Blessed by Lysa TerKeurst
How to Live a Life of Victory by Mary Southerland