"For whatever one sows, that he will also reap." Galatians 6:7
For my entire life I have struggled with sin. In fact, I have found that I am a slave to it. Now, my sin may be different than your sin, but if we are honest, we can all agree with the Apostle Paul that we feel this war in our inner being between the flesh and the spirit.
As I reflect back on my life and think of the times when I was victorious in my spiritual life and the times that I have crashed and burned, allowing my sin to rule, I have seen one common theme emerge!
Whatever I feed more grows, and whatever I starve seems to die.
Those times I am thriving spiritually, sense a closeness to God, gladly discipline my life and turn away from sin are the times where I am consistently feeding my Spirit. Those are times around camps, missions, service, prolonged time of a disciplined devotional life. I am feeding my spirit and as I do, my faith grows deeper and stronger. As I get more and more spiritually healthy I find that I actually lose a taste for some of the sins that seem to always be lurking around certain corners.
This parallel works exactly with our bodies. Have you noticed that when you are dialed in and eating healthy food and exercising, you actually long to do more activities and eat healthier and therefore have more energy for the adventures of life? Have you experienced the inverse? When you stop exercising and McDonald's becomes your best friend, you are more and more content to binge watch season after season of your favorite show and slowly forgetting what the outside world looks like?
In the same way whatever we feed will grow. It actually takes a significant amount of effort and discipline to transition from a couch potato into a healthy and active person. Just desiring it, or having a salad here and there doesn't do it.
In those seasons where sin is the marker of your life and those habitual sins seem inescapable, and you feel as though there is this monster that has taken a hold of the man you long to be, consider a different strategy in defeating him.
Usually we take imagine confronting our sin by taking it on straight on. I mean, we are empowered by the Holy Spirit, we are conquerers in Christ, we should be able to take this monster down with faith! While this is true, experientially, I have found that this is just like eating a salad after months on the couch and then attempting to run a marathon.
What if you approached this battle in a more subversive way. What if you actually didn't worry about fighting your sin and flesh, but simply began to starve it? What if the time and energy you have allowed yourself to feed this monster, you used for other endeavors, for building up your Spirit. What if you fed your Spirit and starved your flesh?
When this happens this monster becomes weaker and the Spirit becomes stronger and pretty soon, this ominous monster is a weakling that can easily be crushed by the Spirit.
God's heart for you is to not just be forgiven, but to be transformed. Thankfully God is slow to anger and abiding in love! He is your biggest fan and longs to empower you to live a holy and abundant life. But it is on us to allow this partnership to happen, to give God space in our lives to mold, shape and grow us into His image. This means that we must feed the things in our life that will allow this to happen, and starve the things in our life that deter us from this goal.
If we reap what we sow, what are you reaping? What are you feeding? What are the investments you are making in your flesh or in your spirit?
May we as sisters and brothers in Christ, never give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing, but encourage one another all the more as we see the Day approaching!
Starve that monster, then SLAY HIM!