I can so relate to the Apostle Paul; especially where he shares with us in 2 Corinthians12 NLT about having a thorn in his flesh. That thorn was Paul’s reminder that he needed the Lord in his life and that in himself, he was not strong. And folks, I am just as weak as Paul and many of you reading this blog today. I have found that fighting the flesh doesn't work simply by wishing worldly desires away. Trust me when I tell you I have tried many times; only to fail when I try within my own strength. And quite honestly, it tends to be a daily battle; with some days tougher than others. You heard me right; just being honest.
However, I also know that when I cling to Jesus and His word, that is the only time I am successful in choosing what pleases the Lord over what pleases my flesh. I know without doubt I can lay every emotion, whether good or bad, at the feet of Jesus. I know He takes every temptation from that moment. But here’s the key. I have to be willing to let it go and remove my hands from snatching it back if I really want His help. And trust me when I say, there are times it takes everything within me to push thru my flesh and in what I want versus what I know to be right in the eyes of God. So folks, I’m not denying the hold our flesh can have over our spirit man. That’s why it’s so important to cling to God’s word; reading it daily and allowing it to take deep root within us. We need to allow His word to ultimately make the necessary changes within our hearts and minds; renewing both on a daily basis.
One of the scriptures I hold tightly too is found in 2 Corinthians12:8-10 NLT, where the Apostle Paul shares, "Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong."
Many times I find myself begging the Lord, just like Paul, to take every fleshly temptation or desire away from me too. However, I only find the strength to walk away from those desires when I quickly obey the prompting of His Holy Spirit. If I don’t obey quickly, I fall prey to the sins of this world, just like everyone else.
And in case you may be wondering, there is a middle ground and the bible is very clear about too! Don’t think you can trick the Lord by pretending you don't struggle in the same way. Don't be fooled. The Lord knows our very thoughts and every desire within our souls. He knows everything about us; including our fleshly desires.
In Revelation3:15-16 NLT, The Lord warns us where He says, "I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!
Folks...don't ride the fence. Don't you think it's time to stop lying to yourself and admit that without the Lord, you too are weak? It's actually liberating to know we don't have to be strong when we have the Lord in our lives. He prefers that we be weak and that we draw our strength only thru Him.
So why not take a moment right now to make a fresh start with God? It's as simple as repenting of your sins, acknowledging that you need Jesus and asking Him to be The Lord and Savior of your life.
It really is that simple folks!
Be blessed my family & friends. Praying you find strength in the Lord as you cling to His promises found in His word. Know that His total favor will pour over you with renewed strength as you continue to draw close to Him.
Love you all!