I’m going to be real:
First, this is Part Two of the post right before this one, “IT’S NO BIG DEAL.” Second, if you don’t believe in God, read this anyway. This isn’t biased information: it’s a window into the life of a person who does believe in God and who is a part of this journey we all travel upon in one way or another.
I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead. (Philippians 3:10-11 NIV)
Today, my mediation rests on Philipians 3, titled: “No Confidence in the Flesh.” The Apostle Paul gives instruction to the followers of Christ (safeguards.) This instruction applies indefinitely until the end of this world when Christ returns, according to Revelations and all the prophesies of the Bible. I understand some people don’t believe in the Bible- If you don’t believe in the Bible, keep reading anyway.
What is “flesh”? Flesh is skin. Flesh is what we physically see and feel. It’s something we can touch and experience. Scientifically, it is matter: a group of atoms/cells, all clumped together, which we can identify (in one way or another…)
What happens when that “flesh” doesn’t serve its purpose? When the milk goes bad or some person lets you down? Then what?
For, me, I get sick. If I drink the rotten milk, I vomit. If i put all my confidence in a person, they eventually let me down, I vomit. This is “the flesh.” It really doesn’t matter if you’re intellectual or not: rotten food and rotten people will make you sick.
I’ve been told over and over again: “you are one of the MOST defiant people on this earth.” This appraisal of my personal character has been made by every person who I have ever let near my heart and/or soul. Being told I’m so extremely defiant has made me even more defiant, naturally! I’m totally that cliché; I AM my own worst enemy. I drink the rotten milk (ewwwww, oh so figuratively!) I experience frustration and distrust- as a consequence of putting more hope in human beings than in The Ruler of All: Christ, God, the Holy Spirit.
Lessons learned from my experiences: God always reins me in. Always. And because of my defiance, the lessons are often painful.
Paul states, in Philipians 3:12-14-
This is encouragement! This is how I feel: I’m definitely not even close to being done with my journey (good and bad) and I need to press forward and not cling to the past nor hold onto guilt. Elementary to some, including myself, however, not always my first inclination (obviously.) This passage removes that state of paralysis that tends to hold me, and many many other people, from moving forward with energy and enthusiasm. It is so very freeing to see the root of the pain and move forward in perfect imperfection!
So, how do the imperfect actually move forward in this freedom? Philipians 3:15-21 is titled, “Following Paul’s Example.”
Call it a blonde moment, but Wow. The above passage is a completely practical guide to move forward. I’ve seen similar models listed many times in secular and Christian forms.
- Living up to our levels of attainment (not perfection)
- Keep your focus (mine is eternity within God’s Kingdom)
- Don’t “reinvent the wheel” (especially when you don’t even have an axis to put it on)
- Live well, not taking pride in immoral behaviors and/or attitudes
- Live in confidence (True focus of eternity through Jesus)
- Do not put faith in the flesh above faith in in the Spirit of God
It is through my experiences I can write these truths and observations. My faith is built with sweat, blood and tears- not from some imaginary land of fairy tales. Clearly, if I had a map of where I’ve been (life-lessons), it would prove the exhistance of my defiance and clear exhistance of the lessons I’ve learned from that defiance.
Today, my heart is full of gratitude towards God. I’m am not sad nor do I regret my past. It has made me who I am today. I am truly blessed. I am truly loved. I have peace- the only peace I’ve ever been able to trust- the peace only God can provide. I have Soul Confidence.
Ps- I welcome your thoughts, comments, additions, etc!
Here’s the link to part one:
“IT’S NO BIG DEAL”.