It is true, I have been stripped. Stripped of myself...but myself keeps trying to build up so the stripping is ongoing.
Here are two Scriptures that identify the central theme of my life right now:
Romans 12:1-2 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Galatians 5:16&25 But I say, walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.
Jesus Christ = Freedom
Does this seem like an elusive equation to anyone else? Why does it have to be so hard to grasp? Why do Christians, pastors, churches, and theology tend to get in the way of people finding freedom through Christ? Why can't it just be SIMPLE? Accept Christ, experience freedom, respond with excitement and joy.
I wonder what percentage of Christians are really living free. It's probably a number below 50%, wouldn't you guess? I mean, seriously, Christianity is NOT the fastest growing religion.
Where do we get so lost on the journey? Why isn't it a "journey of desire" all the time? I wonder if people realize when they start this journey that it will be a battle. A battle between our flesh and the Holy Spirit. I certainly didn't know about the battle...I thought my salvation was the beginning and the end all at once.
Anyway, the verses above permeate my being daily. I count myself among the very blessed because I have been allowed to experience great pain and loss and at the same time experience the power of the Holy Spirit and the love of my Father. This experience is not something I want to become a distant memory. I have learned A LOT from the hard stuff. And I don't want to forget the lessons learned...because I know without a doubt that if I forget them, I'll have to relearn them and that's just pure stupidity. But also, God has so graciously given me the opportunity to live a different kind of life. An organic life, as I tend to think of it. I feel all natural and pure. Without additives, if you will. And you'll have to, because this is my blog.
My greatest desire is to live a life that pleases God. I really love him! And it is so true what John says...that I love him because he loved me first. My second greatest desire is that others realize and know God's intense, unfailing love for them. And also that others will live in his will, always seeking to live by his Spirit. Because it is FOR God, but because he loves US, we get to experience true FREEDOM!!!
Is this even making sense? I'm going to be studying more about this whole freedom thing and making notes and hopefully my thoughts will become clearer.
Anyway, I hope you're living free. And if you're not, I want you to know that you CAN live a life of true freedom!