There’s a constant war for my mind. For my heart. For my attention. For my life. I swear there is a legit devil on one side and angel on the other. Just like the cartoons always said there was. Nothing shows this more than what happened in my car on the way to work the other day. I listen to Christian music 99% of the time. Not because I don’t like other music. I’m not some fuddy duddy, trust me. I listen to it to keep me grounded in God. To keep me grounded in hope, faith, trust, forgiveness, and more. I also have been known to enjoy getting down to some other forms of music too. From disco to rap to pop to country. I simply love music and dancing! Before I get into what happened let’s look at something else first. Gods word.
John 17:14-16 “I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. 1 John 2:15-17 “Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.” There are other verses that clearly state that we are to live in this world but not be part of it. (Romans 12:1-2, 1 John 4:4, John 8:22-24, John 15:9) Clearly God knew there would be a battle waged for His children. A battle of good and evil. A battle I struggle with daily.
Last night I had a talk with God about this. How the familiar is so easy while striving for something new almost always seems impossible. Take an addict for instance. The addiction can be anything from drugs, to anger, to the need to be loved. The addict only knows life under that addiction, how to handle life under that addiction. It’s familiar. We as people will lay under a prickly blanket that causes us to bleed willingly when it’s all we know. I’ve been there. In some ways I still am. Doing what comes naturally, what feels good in the moment, is so much easier (in the moment) than daring to try for better. For me my addiction is the need to be loved and to work, no fight, for what I want. I don’t know how not to constantly be fighting, doing, proving my worth to others. My addiction is people. From friendly to romantic, I’m addicted to people pleasing. And to pleasing myself through people. It’s an exhausting daunting task but it’s all I know. I’m in the process of giving that addiction up. But it ain’t easy.
And I know I’m not alone in this. Someone reading this needs to give up their own addictions. Needs help just like I do to no longer be of this world. To stop looking to all the wrong things to fulfill us. To start living more like Jesus did. The enemy wants nothing more than to keep us down in our addictions. To keep us only hungry for what’s destroying us. And he will make it look like fun. He will make it look like success. He will make it look like we are winning. However all the “success” in the world isn’t enough. That’s why there are so many wealthy, to society’s eye successful, unhappy people. It’s not enough. The world is not enough.
Now to what happened in my car. I turned on my radio and my usual station (K-Love) was playing but with a lot of static. Then all of a sudden a song from my past (a song I absolutely love) came through too. They were literally battling to be played on my radio. I sat there driving torn between which one I wanted to win out. That’s such a metaphor for life. At least my life. I’m torn daily between God and the world. Two things fighting for my heart, mind, attention, loyalty, and more. The two songs was a perfect display of that. When it was all done I couldn’t help but laugh. You’re probably wondering what happened. I had to turn the station to another Christian station. In that moment I was able to choose God. But some moments, some battles, as we all know aren’t that easy.
All I can tell you is what I do.
- I read Gods word daily. Or at least 5 to 6 days a week. I can admit sometimes I miss a Saturday. Something I need to work on. But I allow Gods word to permeate my life.
- I pray constantly. Throughout my day I am talking to God.
- I listen to worship music. Almost all the time. When my radio cooperates that is. 😜
- I do life with other believers. I have found the more time I spend with others going after the same goal I am ( a life lived for God) the easier it becomes for me to do. Side note: This does not mean I will not do life with non believers. I am friends with people with different beliefs than mine. I just simply don’t look to them to be a guide in my life.
- I try to take this life one step at a time. The enemy wants me, wants you stuck in a constant state of anxiety. Believing that everything needs to happen right now. And that if it’s not it never will. This is where reading and knowing Gods word really helps.
There is a battle my friend for you and for me. As Christ followers we are called to live in this world but live differently from it. The only way I know to even remotely get this right is to stay so connected with God I don’t know where He ends and I begin. I don’t always get this right. Neither will you always get this right. That’s why there is Jesus. To give us the strength to do what we can’t on our own. (Philippians 4.13) It’s my prayer that we lean on Him to win this battle. A battle for our best life.