Cut off the flesh, don’t just subdue.
Subdued is not enough. Just being disciplined and not changing our hearts is not the fullness of where God wants us to be. To make it to the end of the race and have fruit to help others, we are to be a bride without spot, wrinkle, or blemish. Ephesians 5:27. Wrinkle represents government and order in our life, spot is sin removed, and blemish is an unhealed heart.
I have grown in controlling myself in certain areas. Far to go, and we will never be done. Self control is a fruit of the Spirit. And it is a start. But never meant to be all that is done. Like forever, we will need to work that out.
We also need to cause our children to use self control as well. At some levels it needs to start at about 6 months of age!!!
My pastor says, “once your soul is opened up to something, it is very hard to not want more and more, or to give it up.” That is why we should guard our hearts and our children from things, for it is the well spring of life.
My mother in law is a public school librarian. She highly encourages the students, the teachers, and the parents to not let them read beyond their grade level. It isn’t about bragging my 3rd grader is reading high school levels. That content will open their soul to things that is not good for them.
To help them have self control, cause them to exercise it. That is one of the greatest things we can do for our children. And one of the things that will take consistency everyday day, all day work. Because our flesh or soul wants to be soothed, satisfied, indulged, etc. This is part of the battle to stay on the straight and narrow.
At the ballgames the kids run all over the place. Up and down, begging and demanding money for concessions etc….. we will see that in the workplace as adults. Just a different setting and age.
I once was in a store with a child screaming and crying and demanding their way. It was a torment to everyone. It was so bad, loud, and was going on forever. I kept thinking please just take the child out of here, because obviously it wasn’t going to stop. I thought I have to leave. I couldn’t stand it. Finally, they shut up. Got what they wanted I suppose. Around the corner, here the momma came. I saw the child was much older than I would have thought because of how it was acting. Old enough that it could have shut itself up.
The momma was in full military uniform. Okay, this is where I could get some hate mail and comments for sure. And yes, I have been that parent before. I wouldn’t have stayed in the store though. Someone at the same time stopped and thanked her for serving our country. Yes!!!!! I am totally in awe of the military laying their life down to serve!!!
But my spirit was grieved and was troubled. The momma is in authority to her leaders, and had and will have great ongoing training to do many things needed. If she was put in a position to use all of that she would no doubt be amazing. But she couldn’t even control her child without giving them whatever they were screaming and terrorizing everyone for.
Oh Lord, help us not to pacify our own flesh with what we want. Do we do what that child did in our own way today? Like, do we pout or give silent treatment to our husband? Do we scream and throw things and words to get our way and rights?? Do we act ugly to the referees at the game? Do we say yes to our bosses at work, and then talk ugly about them, or sneakily do it how we want it done. Oh there are so many ways we are like that child.
I have been praying to get rid of bitterness. It is polluting my walk with the Lord, and has closed up hearts toward me that I want to fellowship with. I asked for God to help me. And let me tell you, I had to be exposed by people and situations so that I could see it was there!!! So I could hurt and want it gone!!
I had to break pride and say dang, I took a test and saw where I was short. This walk on earth, this journey in the Lord, is a test. Tests aren’t bad. They show us what we need to work on, so we can pass, and have full knowledge of the course.
I had ‘subdued’ my flesh in some areas. Then some situations caused me to let it come out of the cage!! These are the times to get to work. So, sometimes we need to quiet those things through self control and lock it up. But that is not meant to be all we do. We need the root plucked up and the head cut off!! (Matthew 3:10, Luke 3:9) The flesh needs to go! Then, we need our hearts healed. We need to ask God to expose and heal those areas.
When we are young we are strong enough to ‘subdue’ our self. Get religious and do things by law. That will work too!! But it is one of the nastiest spirits to deal with!!! And as much as I know about the religious spirit, I still find it popping up in my life!! Yuck!!! We can fool a lot of people. But if we didn’t get rid of all the roots we allow the forces of the spirit realm to put pressure on us to do and act certain ways.
A lot of times in the nursing homes for a example, people that never ever would do certain things all the sudden do them. They don’t have the strength to subdue anymore. It may be a sin they kept down with discipline or ‘law’ and never purged. If this isn’t reason enough to say, Oh God I want that sin cut out!! Not subdued only!!!!
Well I am just sharing the journey of wanting more sin gone, so more of God can come in. I am currently in the thick of it.
But I have much hope and even joy, that God corrects us if we are wanting to be his son!! Sonship is a high call. It isn’t the wide easy path. But we can trust our hearts and souls with Jesus to do the precious work in our spirit, soul, and body. We have a loving Father that has felt our infirmities. He knows we are but dust. If you are going through a process and aren’t feeling His gentleness and love, you are probably trying to change by the letter of the law! Fall into the hands of a loving God. By the Spirit drawing us we come.
Keep going! It is hard but worth it!!!