Galatians 5:7-10 Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you. A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump. I have confidence in you through the Lord, that ye will be none otherwise minded: but he that troubleth you shall bear his judgment, whosoever he be.
For more than a week after reading this passage it would come to mind and became a question about my own walk. What happened? “Ye did run well” That was me, I had ran well until something caused me to stumble. It was easy to point the finger at situations or persons and say they were at fault, to allow that to be an excuse or reason to act out to give into being a person I no longer recognized. If I were to be completely honest with myself I knew I had nobody to blame but myself I went that direction. James 1:13-15 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.
It’s easy to blame others and make excuses for evil thoughts and wrong actions. Excuses include: (1) It’s the other person’s fault; (2) I couldn’t help it; (3) everybody’s doing it; (4) it was just a mistake; (5) nobody’s perfect; (6) the devil made me do it; (7) I was pressured into it; (8) I didn’t know it was wrong. A person who makes excuses is trying to shift the blame from himself to something or someone else. A Christian, on the other hand, accepts responsibility for his wrongs, confesses them, and asks God for forgiveness.
Even with my mind filled of all the excuses for my actions my heart remained troubled because I knew the truth. The truth was I knew right and I didn’t obey God. I had allowed myself to focus on troubles and while it was good to reflect on them to learn from and release them to God, I had in fact allowed them to consume me and control me. Galatians 5:24-26 And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.
Did my actions reflect Christ or His character, would my example result in a desire for others to turn toward Him? Sadly I know the answer is no. I made excuses and didn’t crucify my fleshly desires instead I walked my own way and not in the Spirit. I had allowed pride, vengeance and excuses to creep in. To get them out I had to confess it as sin and ask God’s forgiveness. I had forgotten who I was and who I belonged to, I am Christ’s but I hadn't reflected anything more than fleshly attitudes and desires. I had thought wrong, I had done wrong, I had fallen. My focus seemed to quickly turn from God’s forgiveness and moved forward to self-condemnation, shame, depression, and almost defeat.
Then I heard a message that reminded me life is a spiritual battle and I remembered that not only am I a child of God but I’m a soldier of Jesus Christ. 2 Timothy 2:3-4 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
There was my answer, life would be tough and I’d likely continue to endure hardness but to be a good soldier for Jesus Christ I would have to stop entangling myself with the affairs of this life. I would have to make that choice to acknowledge the person I had been but realize in Christ I could pick up and move on. My focus would need to remain on Him and I would have to be engaged in this battle.
In battle soldiers are given orders they must hear and then do. James 1:22-25 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.
I’d have to be sure I had on armor. (Ephesians 6:11-17 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:)
I would also have a code of conduct. Colossians 3:12-17 Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
Though I may be tempted by things of this life and possibly stumble in battle I can be certain that His strength will always be available to me and I can do all things through Him. 2 Corinthians 12:9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
This will be a long battle that will require me to daily choose to lay aside every weight and I will have to continue to look to Jesus for direction. Hebrews 12:1-2 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
 Note from Tyndale Life Application Study Bible, King James Version
I'm a wife of 20 years to a husband that consistently chooses to love me despite my flaws and a mother of 3 wonderful, loving and giving children. I have 6 babies waiting for me up in Heaven. I'm imperfect, often broken and learning; you will see many aspects of what makes me the person I am throughout this blog. You will find no condemnation from me. I have my fair share of problems and battles, I win some and lose some but by God's grace I'm continuing in the good fight. I'm attempting to live life authentically and I enjoy the many blessings God has given both in happiness and pain. I don't have any formal education in Biblical Studies and I don't claim to be an expert. I'm just sharing experiences and lessons I am learning or trying to learn as I go through life.