Many Christians are broken and beaten up in life. Some of us are battered in the workplace, in relationships, in finances, in career, and in many other areas. I shudder to think that the Christian life is a drag for many of us. If there’s any truth to this, why is it? What could possibly be the reason?
I’ve never seen an expecting mother who wouldn’t in excitement prepare for her newborn’s arrival. Likewise for us, long before our parents thought of conceiving us, out of love, God provided all we’d ever need to live a whole and productive life on earth. (Ephesians 1:4)
We have All the resources to live an Exceptional life In Christ
In fact, God provided all the natural resources man would ever need before He even created the first man (Gen 1: 1-31 ) He looked into our future and saw we would need chairs, houses, cars, planes, computers, food —and made the materials available. In the same way, at our spiritual birth, God provided spiritual blessings (spiritual raw materials) we’d ever need to be fruitful as Christians.( Ephesians 1:3)
Spiritual blessings are key benefits of a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. They include forgiveness of sin, freedom from guilt and shame, wisdom, insight, spiritual gifts, the power to live Holy, and the power to effect changes. We have all that’s necessary to live victorious, rich and fruitful lives II pet 1: 3. So clearly, every born again Christian has received these spiritual resources.
Why do we see fitful progress in many areas of our lives?
If God provided everything we need to live whole lives, why do many Christian lives lackluster? I believe an uninspiring life abases the very life Jesus died for us to have. (John 10.10) It is at best a scorn to Christianity. Like Daniel, Joseph and Solomon in the Bible, God wants our lives to attract the unbelieving world to Christ even as we reflect God’s many-sided wisdom.
Trees to Chairs, a Dream to Economic stability, Knowledge to a Good Decision; What Does it Take?
‘’The purposes of a person’s heart are deep waters, but one who has insight draws them out’’ Proverbs 20:5
Can you imagine the layers of work that went into converting trees to papers used to make books and chairs? The Iron ore to the steel used for cars, bridges, and building?
Just as pressure was exerted and a series of iterative processes were responsible for the final result from most of our natural resources. Similarly, the spiritual blessings — talents, insights, special abilities— would require fine-tuning.
Interestingly, as Christians, we have an advantage because we have the privilege to receive special transmissions from God on how to go about things. The Holy Spirit, the master strategist, aids us in converting these spiritual resources to something beneficial and relevant to our present needs.
That’s why in his letter to Timothy, Paul reminds us to fan into flames the spiritual gifts that God has given us (2Timothy 1:6).
The same way natural resources are mined, in our spiritual lives, we must exert some pressure drilling down into our minds, we must engage with these resources within us to refine them. We must resist the distraction and sit down for extended periods of time — not only surfing the internet— but refine our minds in studying the word of God, reading books, thinking deeply and being diligent to take necessary steps. That way we’ll be able to cut through our ‘’chaffs’’ to bring out our refined self. This is how we can leverage those spiritual resources to benefit our families, our society and the world at large.
I doubt we would go past a day not having to make decisions. Wisdom (applied knowledge) is the backbone of every good decision. We may have information but be oblivious to when and how to apply the knowledge.
How then Do We Get Wisdom?
It was Abraham Lincoln that said ‘’Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the ax”
Sharpening our Axes; The Work of the Holy Spirit
What do we spend the chunk of our time on? We become wiser as we interact more with the Holy Spirit. Many of us starve our spirit of its food. We’ve not trained ourselves to daily listen to Him in different issues. It’s not surprising we struggle through life barely getting by. Study of the Word, meditation, worship and more importantly obedience are ways to sharpen our axes. As we consistently do this, we’ll learn to discern God’s intentions in all situations we face. God will give us tact in dealing with people and we’ll be able to easily hewn down challenges.
I won’t forget the time, we searched for a house for a very long time. One day as I was meditating on the Word of God, I felt the Holy Spirit ask me ”What do you really want?’’ From that question I understood the problem_ I didn’t know what I wanted. Applying God’s words of specificity in prayer _ Wisdom I received the results that I wanted.
A few things to think about
As physical food to the body, so is the Word of God, worship, fellowship, and prayer — spiritual food— to our spirit.
A dull ax _ little food, little strength results in more pressure being exerted.
A Sharp axe_ adequate food, and more strength to confront our challenges Col 3:16.
The more we interact with the Holy Spirit, the more He communicates the father’s heart to us, —remarkable secrets you do not know (Jeremiah 33:3)
The longer we dwell in His presence, the more we’ll gain mastery over life’s challenges —The life of Moses
All we need for life has been given us in Christ. We gain knowledge insight on how to convert these resources to benefit our present challenges as we interact with the Holy Spirit.
My Prayer today
Lord, please help me to make time to sharpen my ax. Help me recognize distractions. Make my ears attuned to wisdom and my heart to seek understanding in Jesus name. Amen.
God Bless you.
Let us know in the comments below, why do you think we live less than we’ve been called to?