The Reward for Surviving Rough Seas

The Reward for Surviving Rough Seas
We are all like sea shells tossed about in rough waters and being re-shaped in wondrous ways. But have you ever contemplated the notion that sea shells have to complete their journey through the rough waters before they get to rest on the shore? Yeah, we are ALL like sea shells and Heaven is The Great Shore.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Spiritual Night-Vision Goggles of Discernment

Greetings Everybody,
I have been quiet for a few days...typically I tend to do that when storing up energy in preparation for something.
And although I DON'T always know what that something is, I DO know that generally God leads me to "the still waters" prior to something that will call for concentrated effort on my part.

Don't know what it is yet.
And it really doesn't matter.

I am content to know that this is a time of being still and knowing that He is in control.  Like the scripture says...
"He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalms 46:10

Perhaps as an extension of my own struggles, it is appropriate that I feel compelled to talk with you guys about how to deal with negativity and darkness in our lives.

Let's begin with this statement:

Christ Rescues Us From Darkness.

"For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." 
Colassians 1:13-14

But we Christians are not exempt from having to contend with darkness in our daily lives. 
In fact we are told to be wary of the evil one  
who is on the prowl .

"Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour." 
I Peter 5:8

And if indeed our enemy is Satan, and we are called on to be Self-controlled and Alert, then we need weapons to use in this fight. 

Today I want to share with you that one of those 
Spiritual Weapons is Discernment.

And we need Discernment because 
we ARE engaged in that battle 
of Light against Dark 
and everybody knows that
 its HARD to see in the DARK!

"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Ephesians 6:12

Discernment works like Spiritual Night-Vision Goggles.
It helps us see what 
is Of The Dark 
as we 
go about 
our every day lives.

And make no mistake, 
this is all about Light and Dark.

And as Christians it's all about 
 The Light.

"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin." I John 1:7

Now as I begin to further unfold this lesson, let me also share with you 
that I have come to believe 
that our lives are very much like 
a giant tapestry 
that starts when we are born 
and ends when we die.

You could say that 
the Threads of that Tapestry 
are made up of 
our Thoughts,
our Words
and our Actions.

So what does Discernment have to do with a Life Tapestry?

Here's What:
-I believe we must use the skill of DISCERNMENT in selecting the threads we USE in that Life Tapestry.
-I believe that we should DISCERN the Light threads from the Dark ones.
-I believe that once we learn how to tell them apart we should then Purposefully CHOOSE the Light threads instead of the Dark ones.
-I believe that failure to Discern and Purposefully Choose Light over Dark will lead to a really sad life with many dark and knotted threads, and could lead to eternal damnation.

I recently found myself just weaving away 
with a collection of Dark Threads 
known as disgust, revulsion, dread, fear, and anger.

The more I worked with those threads, 
trying diligently to justify the use of them, 
the worse I felt.

It was hard to realize that I had been 
CHOOSING to work with them.

I HAD other options.

But I had defiantly CHOSEN to select the Dark threads.

Once having chosen to weave with the Dark Threads, 
I found that it was difficult to put them down.

It was difficult because the 
Dark Threads are sticky.

They try to cling to you.

And they get all knotted up.

And they cause confusion, and chaos, and cloudy thinking.

It is my opinion that the only way 
to get rid of these Dark threads 
is to ask Jesus 
to take them away from you.

It is also my opinion 
that at a certain point 
we All have to simply Lift Up our tangled hands, 
and Show Him our knotted Tapestries, 
and Ask HIM to Repair Us.

He has a way of repairing Life Tapestries.

He gives us new threads 
and shows us how to use the Light threads 
in a way that brings 
depth, understanding and significant perspective 
to our Lives. 

He tells us to LIVE in the LIGHT by choosing Threads of Goodness, Righteousness, and Truth.

He warns us 
to have nothing 
to do with darkness.

God doesn't mince words here...He doesn't leave us to ponder if a certain THREAD SELECTION is OK or not.

He gives us the litmus test for our 
Thoughts, Words and Actions:  

-Is is Good?
-Is it Righteous?
-Is it Truth?
-Does it please The Lord?

"For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth and find out what pleases the Lord. Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them."  Ephesians 5:8-11

It's true every decision we make is not a moral one.
(For example, I don't think I have to ponder whether trimming  my toenails 
is Good, Righteous, Truthful, or if it pleases The Lord.)  

But MANY of our daily decision 
DO have moral elements to them.

-Choosing to dwell on harsh words someone said to you
IS a moral choice!

-Choosing to dwell on hardships that life has handed you 
IS a moral choice!

-Choosing to focus on the past, instead of claiming God's blessings in the future. 
There IS a Right and a Wrong here.
And Choosing The Dark over The Light is sinful.

We are to have "nothing" to do 
with the Fruitless Deeds of Darkness. 

And that concept of "nothing" includes 
mentally dwelling on those
fruitless deeds as well.

If we want to Choose The Light 
then Christians MUST 
use Discernment in these matters, 
because scripture tell us 
that sin can easily entangle us.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." Hebrews 12:1

So how do we gain access to Discernment?
Is there a Template? A Pattern? 
a Sample to go by?

Yes, there is.

But it is one that you must come to 
based on your OWN by reading His Word 
and your OWN daily walk with Christ.

It's NOT simple.

But it IS effective.

Today I will share with you 
ONE way 
that I practice 
Discernment in the Matters of Darkness.

When I find myself dwelling on feeling angry, sad, hurt or any number of other negative emotions,  I have learned to stop and simply ask God...
"Father is this feeling coming from YOU?"
(I ask this question of God because I must find out if the feeling is a natural response to some type of guilt on my part or if it is actually a spirit of Darkness sent to undermine my faithwalk?)

"This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all." 
1 John 1:5

If I submit my heart to HIM, 
and I receive a the answer YES, then...

- I may be feeling guilty about something and need to repent and ask forgiveness. 
- I may need to take some action to correct something that I have done wrong. 
- I may need to go humble myself and ask somebody to forgive me.

But If my heart is tuned to HIM,
and I receive the answer NO, then... 
well then THIS is a whole different thing.

Cause if it's not from God, it has be from satan.

This issue is pretty clear.
God is LIGHT.
Satan is DARK.


Sometimes I think we need to find the courage to be able to just call a the devil by his name 
and then kick him off the sofa of our minds.

Scripture talks about this concept.

"Submit yourselves, then, to God. 
Resist the devil, and he will flee from you." 
James 4:7

Get the order on this one...
First we must Submit. 
Then we must Resist.

In order to have the power to Resist, we need God's Help.
And we must ASK for that help by submitting to His Power.

That scripture is near and dear to my heart.
There have been plenty of times when I have had to lay down my pride, and submit to God.

And today I share with you that I have had to learn to ACTIVELY resist the Devil and his Dark Entangling Threads.

-By Faith,I have learned to SEEK DISCERNMENT in my daily life

-By Faith, I have learned to check my emotions and feelings to see if they are of HIM or not.

-By Faith, I have learned that some things are bigger than me and that I need help.

-By Faith, I have learned to have the courage to Call on GOD for that help.

-By Faith, I have had to learn to speak about prayers uttered in private in which I call on 
The POWER of JEHOVAH and JESUS CHRIST as I ask for  protection from darkness.

-By Faith,and based on James 4:7, I have learned to say OUTLOUD,

"In the name of Jehovah God, 

Jesus Christ his Son, 

The Holy Spirit, 

and all the ministering angels of Heaven,  

I command you Satan to LEAVE ME."

And afterwards I have felt relief.
And I have felt God's Peace flood over me. 
I can not tell you that if you do this, 
every burden that you carry will be lifted. 

I can not promise you that if you do this, 
it will stop all sadness in your life, 
for many of us have
 "thorns in the flesh".

But I CAN tell you that 
drawing closer to God 
is always a good thing.

And I can tell you that My God Is ABLE, 
and if you need HIM, 
you need to submit yourself to Him 
and talk with HIM yourself.

"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen." 
Ephesians 3:21

May these words lead you to Seek God Today!

Blessings to you and yours.

In Him,


Christine said...

I sure do find wisdom and comfort in your words that you write.
I think God had me in mind when you penned this post.

My brother-in-law is so against God's word and considers the Bible false. I usually am not a confrontational person, but I had to let him know how I felt. I know I saw evil on his face and in his eyes. In the heated moment, I silently asked God for help. That's when my husband stepped in.
I can't get the look of my brother-in-law out of my mind. He has been visiting our son a lot lately and now I'm worred.
So James 4:7 will be said over and over.

Thank you, again for your post!!

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Amen and preach it, Sister! Just this week I posted the poem, The Weaver, on my blog. It's one I've loved for decades and speaks to the tapestry He's weaving in our lives.
These have been days of despair for me but I know and trust He's with me every step of the way.