I have an amazingly gorgeous pantry. I love it, I can go in there and look at all that the Lord has provided, with awe and wonder. I have a sense of accomplishment when I see all the beautiful jars of delicious home canned and dried food. If feel confident that I can make meals for friends and family in a matter of minutes. I am prepared for any crisis or emergency. I don’t compare it to anyone else’s pantry, it’s mine, it’s the way I need it to be. I don’t hang out in the pantry; I store things in it that I have made with love. It’s just a room in my house, not a place in which I dwell.
How different it is with my spirit. I need desperately to abide in Jesus, to dwell in His presence, and to be found in Him. I have learned that I can’t compare myself to another because God works in us individually, as we allow. We go from glory to glory. The rapidity of the process depends on our own willingness to pursue Him. We can, however, encourage one another and learn from one another.
Somewhere along the line I stopped going from mountaintop to dry valley experiences. As I cried out for more, for wisdom and understanding; and as I spent time seeking His eyes and studying His Word, the road to righteousness leveled out. Not that we are not righteous, just that we travel a road through life that reveals more and more as we go. I began to notice that although life brought times of sorrow and times of joy, I was always in Him. I noticed I was dwelling in the secret place of the most high. As I sought more, I snuggled in deeper. Instead of ups and downs, the path was straight. The things of life didn’t affect me as much as they once did because I viewed them from my seat in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 2) I had a changed vantage point. Things that once were confusing or saddening, were understood as just another piece of the grand plan God has for my life. I can see heavenly purpose in almost every situation, and even when I don’t clearly see it, I know by faith that it’s there. This emboldens me, it gives me confidence to continue counting every life event as all joy.
I can say, okay Lord, what is your purpose here, how will You use this thing for Your glory? Is this warfare against the enemy? Is it warfare against my flesh? Am I reaping something I’ve sown? Reveal what I need to seek forgiveness for and show me what I can take from this and use to glorify You.
To abide in Jesus is to ever be surprised by His love and protection versus being caught off guard by life’s challenges. To abide is to dwell in His presence, to be in Him at all times as life unfolds. He is not distant and He doesn’t require a special procedure. He waits for me! He wants me to just come to Him. I know I can find rest in times of pain, I can rejoice in times of abrasion, and I can find reasons to praise at all times. The closer I get to God, the further I get from my flesh and from bad decisions that lead to sin. Seek first the kingdom of God and the rest truly is added to you. I have learned that it’s up to me, I need to study the Word, ask for clarification and wisdom, and spend time praying. The investment of my time has reaped a hundred-fold return in His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.
Every time I look into the perfect word of God, I see something deeper; a new revelation. There’s always another layer, something new to discover and tightly grasp. This is why I need to continually study the Word. It is nourishment to the spirit, food for the soul. It is exhilarating and prophetic and encouraging. Sometimes I find myself forgetting to breathe simply because of the spine-tingling wonder in those words. I live and move and breathe and have my being in Him. I am always aware of His presence. I am never alone. Jesus reveals truth to me through His Word, how to live, how to love and how to know His voice.
Romans 8:1 taught me this: We are free from indwelling sin because we walk according to the Spirit, not the flesh. Verse 5 teaches, “for those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.” You will set your mind on what the Spirit desires, what the Spirit communicates to your spirit. It doesn’t happen instantly, it’s a lifelong process of seeking, learning, resting and renewing the mind. “To be spiritually minded is life and peace”. Of course it is! The more spiritually minded we are, the less our flesh affects us. Little irritations bother us less and less. Our mind is on the Spirit so the things of the world lose significance. Therefore, we are free from the laws of sin and death. We are freed up to love unconditionally and live eternally now! That’s more good news!
So today I urge you to seek God right from where you are. Seek His Word, seek His opinion and seek His glory. Pray, learn scripture and talk to your friend Jesus continually because He is right there beside you. Sing a song of worship to Him and thank Him for His lovingkindness. Abide in Him. Make the effort to put your focus on Him in everything you do and He will lift you up. You will never be the same! Blessings friends.