Romans 8 v 7
“The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.” Romans 8:7 NIV
When you stop listening to the Holy Spirit, close your ears to His wise guidance and start trying to do things your own way, I have discovered that two things happen…
Firstly, the more you “tune out” His voice the less you can hear it, to the point that going to church and receiving the ministry of the Word becomes an annoyance! Like a house alarm that won’t stop going off!
Second, the less you listen, the more attractive the things of the world become. Be it a pretty girl, a new car, or just simply a new hair do we become more self-aware and less God-aware!
This is a dangerous place to be, because our frame of reference, our boundary fence is gone and more often than not, we find ourselves sliding uncontrollably towards a place we know we shouldn’t be.
Whether that’s beginning to experiment with our girlfriend or watching pornography or drinking or doing weed, it takes us to a place we ultimately will regret going to.
We kid ourselves that we got this! We’re in control and we can stop whenever we want, but we can’t!
As today’s verse says: “The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so.” Romans 8:7 NIV
When our mind is governed by fleshly sinful desires, not only do we not want to submit to God, in fact we are UNABLE to submit to His law!
“Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.”
Philippians 4:8-9 NKJV
Meditate, does not mean the same as in the Eastern sense, it means think deeply and constantly, to bring to remembrance. It also involves the idea of ruminating, chewing the cud… We talk about chewing things over when making decisions, it has this same meaning when Paul encourages us to ruminate over the positive…
If we watch a lot of pornography it will affect the way we look at all women. If we engage in violent video games or watch violent films we can find ourselves having a short fuse…
Conversely, if we focus on the gospel of Grace and it’s daily work in our lives it WILL change the way we speak to people, treat people and the way that we act and think.
Grace isn’t just for sinners! Obviously, we’re all sinners but what I mean is we sometimes think of grace as the ticket to get into the party, we show our ticket at the door and then we forget about it! But grace is meant for more than that! If we allow it to, it can work on our attitudes and behaviour every day.
Today, ask God to show you ways in which you can apply grace to the situations you encounter, meditate on pure, holy and praiseworthy things, and then see how much more peaceful your life is!