What does it mean to be imprisoned in Christ? Am I imprisoned in Christ? Do I really want, deep down inside to be imprisoned in Christ? If I desire so, am I willing to live so?
“The remedy for discouragement is the word of God. When you feed your heart and mind with its truth, you regain your perspective and find renewed strength. “Warren Wiersbe
Our family just loves to visit abandoned places. Our son is especially into this, so we go on hikes with him to see these places. We have a few really interesting ones right nearby our home. He studies up on the History of the places and tells us about them as we explore. It’s so intriguing to visit where others once have trod, long ago. You can almost hear the echoes of voices, calling from room to room. The places seem to brighten when we walk in, almost glad someone has remembered them, and come to wander awhile. It’s like the walls are aching with stories to tell.One of the most interesting places, is fenced off and we cannot gain access, nor should we, as it is the ruins of an old missile site. But as you peer through the fence, you can see a set of steps that lead to Nowhere. Just steps where a building used to be. The building was torn down, yet the steps remain. This reminded me of how important it is for us to take inventory of just what we are investing our time in. Do we have any steps that lead to Nowhere, in our own lives? Do we have any ruins that have long since collapsed, and yet we visit the site of those ruins, and climb the steps to Nowhere. The pain rushes back in, the scars throb, the wounds pulsate with reminders of what was, or what could have been.
There’s a quote I read on the site GODINTEREST, that says:
“Leave behind the past because nothing is going to change there and the more you keep looking back the more you’ll fail to see what’s in front of you.”
There is nothing wrong with reflection, but looking back too often is like climbing those steps that lead to Nowhere. I love where the quote says, “Nothing is going to change there.” So true, and I also believe that “the more you keep looking back the more you’ll fail to see what’s in front of you.” God is calling us forward, Hear His Call:
“Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert.(Isaiah 43:19 NASB) “I am the Lord, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another, Nor My praise to graven images.9 “Behold, the former things have come to pass, Now I declare new things; before they spring forth I proclaim them to you.”
Sing to the Lord a new song, sing His praise from the end of the earth! (Isaiah 42:8-10 NASB) We can often paralyze ourselves with regrets and “if only’s.” By the power of Jesus, you can set yourself free. Through His grace, love, and forgiveness, you can walk away from these past things that still draw you up the steps that lead to Nowhere. Stop climbing those steps, and move onward and upward. Move closer to the Lord who loves you, redeems you, and promises to work all things together for Good, to those who love Him and trust His purpose for their lives. (Romans 8:28)
Expressing gratitude can make you a happier person, but there are advantages beyond happiness. Adding gratitude to your attitude can improve your relationships, productivity, health, and even your sleep.
Only a couple of things rummaging around in this crazy brain, and both of them throwing me into a stumbling, humbling Gratitude Attitude. Gratitude because lessons make me think. Gratitude because all things work to the glory of the LORD when we get out of the way and let Him carry the heavy lifting. Attitude — because I have to choose it.
The first lesson — don’t talk about ‘obs-tackles’ put in your path by the evil one, (and yes, I do believe in principalities) because ‘obs-tackles’ are bound to appear — almost immediately. By the time I went to bed last night, my “good” knee — formally the “bad” knee back in high school — was aching — A LOT. Aching enough to wake me up every time I moved — all night long. Giving up on sleep, I found that sitting, getting up — walking — trying to get anything done — the knee continued to hurt. It seriously put an ‘obs-tackle’ in my way today.
That said, it was a very long day. Long days often lead to self-pity, dragging butt, and eventually, not getting anything accomplished. However, if I get out of my own way and let God get me through it, long days also leads to introspection.
Hence — the second lesson of the day. Devotions destroy strongholds. If one is smart enough to load them into the finite brain that does all that mechanical stuff in our lives. Over the decades I have finally learned to stop wallowing in myself, shut my mouth and turn off my brain long enough so that I can feel the Spirit’s nudge. When — a choice made, and the day didn’t look or feel so long or painful any longer.
“For those who are led by The Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.” ~ Rm 8:14
After accepting that Christ is LORD of my life, it has been the Spirit’s nudges that have kept me sane and reminded me that I’m not in this battle alone. Even when I get off track. Even when I fall on my knees and feel like I can’t get up ever again. Even when I think I am the smartest person ever. Even when the knee hurts because of my own stupidity…
And there, my friends are my true Gratitude Attitude today. Jehovah-Shammah [The LORD who is there] loves me. Yeshua Christus loves me. Whether I am a mess and ugly as the sin that springs up daily, They — love — me. They love me enough to send a Helper — The Holy Spirit — to be with me always.
“If you love me, keep my commandments. I will ask the Father to give you another Helper, to be with you always. He is the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees him nor recognizes him. But you recognize him because he lives with you and will be in you.” ~ Jn 15-17