Daily Devotional, Spiritual Walk

Stiff-Armed.

(This is Part 1 of our “_____________________________________” devotional series.)

Good morning, peeps!

You know how I love when God switches it up on me. You all know this. I tell the story of my great joy when this happens and it happens often. I went to bed excited to start our new series and woke up with the same, if not more, excitement. Y’all, I woke up 11 minutes BEFORE my alarm sounded. I even knew how I would kick this thing off and what I would talk about. And then I sat down at this laptop. I tried for five minutes to type what I felt I was supposed to and this is how it went:

stiffarmed

(I don’t think He really needed to do me like that, though. He could’ve just said ‘no’.)

In our latest devotional series, “Fighting Dirty”, we talked about the war that is constantly going on inside of us. “When I would do good, evil is always present” – that war. Actually, we only talked about that briefly – God covered a lot of areas of our fight in that series. I ended it with Part 8 and stated that we would be starting a new one today called “What Doesn’t Kill You” with a focus on the mind using James 1:12 which reads, “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” I was ready!!

So, here’s why I was so excited about this series. When I was teaching summer bible study two years ago, it was impressed upon my heart to do a series on temptation using James 1:12 and I called it “What Doesn’t Kill You”. It was a five-part series using some of the “five W’s and a H”: who, what, why, how and how. I talked about how we all know right from wrong, even those who think the Bible is just a bunch of feel-good stories. And not only do we have willpower to resist temptation, but we’re smart too. We got this…right? Yet somehow, we keep falling (or walking) right into temptation. Now, look at what I just typed. Can you see why I was excited to do this series? It was basically already written for me! All I had to do was remember what I’d said!! I GOT THIS!

stiffarmed

Are you realizing that what I had planned ain’t gonna happen the way I thought?

One of the things I mentioned in Part 8 was that a country is only as strong as its infrastructure. Our mind is our infrastructure and in this war, we need to make sure that we build it up. After I got over my disappointment, I thought about something I always tell my new trainees on the first day of class (which happens to be today): “I not only teach you skills, but I also teach you about safety because having the best skill set in the world will do you no good if you’re at home, not working, because of an injury.” When that came to me, I thought “Skills…armor…Armor of God? Is that what You want me to talk about?” It isn’t. We’re still going to tackle the mind, but in a different way. In this four-part series, we’ll cover getting and keeping this mind of ours battle-ready using the following verses:

Philippians 2:5 – “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus…”

Romans 12:2 – “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

Mark 12:30 – “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.”

I’ll come up with a title by tomorrow…if I don’t get stiff-armed first. Have a great day!

–d.

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