Two Little Circles
If we are living now by the Holy Spirit, let us follow the Holy Spirit's leading in every part of our lives
(Galatians 5:25, NLT
Sometime ago I was speaking to a group of sharp young married couples. Later, one of the couples came to see me about a marital problem. They were contemplating a divorce. I asked, "What's the problem?"
The man said, "Well, frankly, I don't like my wife's looks."
I laughed and said, "I think your wife is a beautiful woman!" But to him she seemed ugly.
While the couple watched, I drew a large circle on a piece of paper, explaining that it represented the Christian life. Within the large circle, I drew two smaller circles -- one representing the flesh, or self-controlled life, the other representing the Holy Spirit-controlled life, based on God's Word. Then I explained to them where he was getting his idea that she was ugly and that he should divorce her.
There is a control center, or throne, in every life. If self is on the throne, the flesh is in control, and Satan influences one's life through the flesh. But if Christ is on the throne, God is directing our lives through His Spirit.
Explaining that God's Word commands the Christian husband to love his wife sacrificially as Christ loved the church, I asked this husband who he thought was causing him to feel as he did about his wife. He said, "I guess it would have to be the devil." He was right.
I asked the couple to picture a dial like that on a radio set, then asked the husband, "If you don't like a particular program, what do you do?"
He replied, "Well, I turn the dial." I explained that his attitude concerning his wife was definitely a message from Satan telling him that his wife was ugly.
Then I asked him what he was going to do about it. He replied, "I will turn the dial and listen to what God has to say about my wife. I want to see her from God's perspective."
About six months later, I was visiting a particular campus and saw this couple coming down a hallway toward me, swinging their arms back and forth and looking at each other with adoring glances. When they recognized me, they ran and embraced me, telling me how that diagram had revolutionized their lives.
Whenever you face a conflict, remember this diagram. It will help you with every problem and temptation you face.
Yours for fulfilling the Great Commission each year until our Lord returns,
The late Dr. Bill Bright was Founder and President/Chairman Emeritus of Campus Crusade for Christ, an organization which began as a campus ministry in 1951 and now has more than 27,000 full-time staff and up to 500,000 trained volunteer staff in 196 countries in areas representing 99.6 percent of the world's population. In the past 50 years, Campus Crusade for Christ has seen approximately 6 billion exposures to the gospel worldwide. The film, "JESUS," which Bright conceived and funded through Campus Crusade for Christ, is the most widely translated and viewed film of any type ever produced. Since its use began in 1980, the film has been translated into 839 languages and viewed or listened to by over 5.7 billion people in 228 countries. Dr. Bright was also the author of more than fifty books. Visit campuscrusade.com for more details
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