While reading Scriptures personally, we as Christians, get into the habit of taking in information without processing and applying it to ourselves; meaning, we read things that we obviously know reveal areas of our lives that aren't where they should be, or describe a way of life we just aren't experiencing. We simply pass that text over in our quest to, ‘have our quiet time’, either, taking no notice of our glaring differences from the text or thinking that text is for a more, Spiritually minded, mature person. If you are serious about God, if you believe this is His Word to you, never again just pass over a Scripture that doesn't show true in your life, because if you read it, and realize it is not true in your life, then you continue with your reading—you have just proven that you are not reading Scriptures in order to be obedient to God's will. At that point, why do you even need to continue reading? You've already shown that you are simply going through steps and wasting time. James 1:22-25. If you read it, and it is not true in your life…this is where you need to focus on Scriptures until it is right; this is where you need to pray and ask for God's will, and strength; this is letting God speak to you.
With that said, let's look at an area of Scriptures where this rule is very often misapplied in our lives; an area of Scriptures that, if listened to and applied, would radically change how you live every moment of every day: Romans 8:5-9. First, this verse and others like it, make it very clear that learning to walk and think, "in the Spirit" are crucial to living for Christ. "Carnally minded" is not some evil, wicked word, it simply means to have thoughts based on and desirous of this world. This verse does not even hint that walking in the Spirit is an option, for those more righteous, or holy as Christians. It is a command for every true Christian. The verse goes so far as to say that, if you do not walk in the Spirit after saying that you accept Christ, you are at enmity with God (that means, actively opposed to, or purposefully hostile to another). This verse says if you are worldly minded, instead of Spiritually minded, it is death. You may seem to be doing well (physically, financially, even spiritually), but, remember when Jesus cursed the fig tree in front of His disciples, it died at the root, in that moment; but the effects of that death were not seen until the next day, when it had withered. Some of us are just like that—the root is dead, and the effects are creeping through our lives. This verse says it is impossible to please God if we are carnally minded. In other words, no matter how much you sacrifice, give, or serve; if you are doing your own thing, and not listening and following in the Spirit, you are not pleasing God. He doesn't need your work, per se, He can do it without you; He needs your heart.
God would not command everyone to do something that was not attainable by everyone. To be "Spiritually minded", simply means to see each person, moment, and decision in life with the perspective of what it means to God, and to eternity; to see the world and people with His values, not the world's; to make decisions, and interact with others based on His love, not the world's. It means to make decisions which very often, go completely against everything that the 3 C's tell you to do: common-sense, culture, and comfort. The Spirit helps you discerned the situation around you based on scriptural values rather than the world’s. Walking in the Spirit is simply, thinking, acting, and living according to what is important to God, in His love, mercy, grace, and righteousness. Luke 8:11, 14. The first step is simply to recognize God's obvious will in the areas that touch our lives every day. 1) Love God most (with all your heart): Mark 12:29-30. This is walking through the day with the realization that the very Spirit of God is literally with you every step of the way, and making the decisions you make, with the conscious admission that you want to do it to show your love for Him. This gives you the foundation to see the rest of the list through Spiritual eyes. I want to love others because You love them; I want to resist this sin because I don't want to hurt You, or mock Your sacrifice; I want to know Your will because I want to please You, and I trust You. 2) Love others as self (love, serve, and give worth to everyone around you—over self) Mark 12:31. Do you see every person with the value of God’s Own Blood? (their pain, their weakness, loss, need) This means having the passion to always help others when it is in your means to do so, even when it is inconvenient, even when it is unwarranted. 3) Be Holy (resist sin with everything in you) 1 Peter 1:15-16., Romans 6:21-23. Deal with your sin. When contemplating sin, see that sin not like the world does, but, the way the Spirit does. Realize that even if it seems harmless, it causes us to hurt or change ourselves in some way, and each sin is a step towards destroying our own lives or other's. 4) Salvation for all (God’s will is for everyone to accept His gift) John 3:16, 1 Timothy 2:3-4, 2 Peter 3:9. *Please notice- this point was not first, second or third place, because God wants us more than anything, but only if we want Him. He doesn't want us to be with Him if we don't love Him, love others, and desire His holiness; so, it is not a question of whether He loves us, but, do we love Him more than our sin, our lifestyle, ourselves? This means seeing each person with the urgency of where they'll be in 100 years, instead of whatever is happening now. 5) Trust Him (grow in Faith with Christ, in His Character, Love, Acceptance and willingness to use you) Joshua 1:9, Hebrews 10:19-23, John 17:22-23. To have the thoughts of the Spirit instead of the thoughts of the flesh, means that you realize God walks with you every moment, regardless of how you feel, or how you've performed, because, He will never leave nor forsake you. 6) Seek His Will (listen for His Voice, learn His Will in the moment) Ephesians 5:15-17. Pray for, and listen for God's direction every moment. 7) Suffer with Him (in persecution) 1 Peter 2:21, Philippians 1:29-30. That means if loving or serving Christ will cause you to lose the friendship, intimate relationship, or love of another; if loving or serving Christ (public prayer, world views, etc.) will cause financial, social, personal, or legal loss; it means we stop crying about how the world is unfair, and thank God every time we get a chance to be singled out for Him. 8) Have unity: 1 Peter 3:8, 1 Corinthians 1:10, Ephesians 4:1-6, John 17:20-21. 9) Forgive others. Make yourself aware always, of the manner with which you communicate to others, even when meaning to be positive. 10) Be thankful. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, Psalm 107:1, Colossians 3:16-17. God blesses us with so many things every moment of every day. There is no greater bonding with God, than to walk aware of His Presence, and, walk aware of all the blessings around you, from Him at the same time. Note every personal, ‘God wink’ He has sent you in events and words around you, to show His intimate love. His spirit is literally sharing every moment with you.
Jesus didn't die for those who want a free ticket to Heaven, so they could carry their selfish mess with them, He died, so those who realize His love and goodness, could experience all of Him, and share eternity with Him. IF YOU ARE SERIOUS ABOUT CHRIST... and you know that you are not walking in the Spirit, do not pass up this moment of change. If you do, your heart has been revealed; make the commitment to Him right now, that you will begin walking with Him from this very moment forward and experience Him in all the ways He died to offer you. 2 Corinthians 13:5.
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