At times I feel rather inadequate, even unworthy, when writing or teaching or speaking about God and our faith. Obey the commandments of God. Follow the teachings of Christ. Do the right thing. Becoming the kind of man who will live that way. These are not always easy for me. Since my dad passed away, I have been in a wrestling match with myself. My spirit has made me go head to head with all that is my good, bad, and ugly. I will not be blind to what is good about me and I do not want to hide my weakness, flaws, and failures.
So, why am I talking about this? To have an intimate relationship with God, others, and yourself, we must know the truth about ourselves. Self-examination is both a humiliating and uplifting struggle. Yet, it is an essential element of our spiritual growth and development. The question is how does this work?
First, what will God do? He pours out his grace on us.
1. God will perform spiritual surgery on our true self, the person that we really are (Hebrews 4:12-16).
2. God redeemed us to forgive our sin guilt and damnation and to break the power that sin has over us (Titus 2:11-14).
3. God will teach and train us to live free of sin (2 Timothy 3).
Second, what will our faith do so that God’s work can flourish in us? We trust God with our life and soul.
1. Face our own image in the mirror and and be willing do something about it (James 1:19-25). Don’t get angry and argue with God but listen to him with the intent to obey.
2. Accept God’s love which we do not and can not earn (1 John 4:9-10, Romans 5:5-11).
3. Seek and clothe yourself in Christ — his mind, spirit, truth, and authority (Colossians 3:1-17).
4. Be persistent and bough some days will be more frustrating then others (Philippians 2:12-18).
5. Turn your deepest desire, hope, purpose, and meaning to seeking God and his kingdom and his righteousness (Matthew 6:19-34).
The struggle for spiritual maturity and growth will continue. If we pay attention to God, he will continue to keep us and make us into what he wants us to be. If we pay attention to ourself, we continue to let God’s work flourish in us. God is always faithful and he will help us to be faithful in the midst of our struggle with ourself. (Romans 7:17-25).