Isn’t it wonderful to be a born-again believer? There are times when the experience of friendship and closeness of the Spirit of God seems like heaven, if, it wasn’t for our continual dealing with the lower nature. If our life on earth was like heaven all the time, then going to heaven wouldn’t be much of an expectation. To me, it would be like a wealthy person living in Europe, being waited upon hand and foot there, to move to another country to be waited on hand and foot. Where is the exception? Or the expectation? I think that kind of life would seem to me to be boring. After all, what kind of expectations would we have of going to heaven when we already had the continual experience of heaven now?
But the plain fact is we are not in heaven, but down here in the real world where life can be good and the next moment turn bad and even ugly at times; where there is a regular pull upon us by the dark forces that surround us. For example, I am a usually happy person until I pull up my favorite news sights and begin reading about the dark sinfulness that is going on in our nation and the insanity of wickedness that is occurring. My heart becomes grieved and angry and I find myself very put off by what others are committing that is so contrary to what we, as believers, know is not of God.
There is the contention every day with the ‘elemental spirits’ of this age that we, as believers, are having to deal with, whether we are in the privacy of own home or out in the public square. This conflict is an every day event and can wear us down if we don’t seek for and receive the daily replenishment of spending time in the presence of God. We are like an automobile that only goes as far as there is gas in the fuel tank. Life itself can be a spiritual drain if we are not ‘connected’ to the power source which is the word of God and the Spirit of God.
But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit,21 keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.
Just like an automobile, if left in a field unshielded from the harsh elements of nature and not operated, will, over time, rust and decay and eventually become unfunctional. We, as natural human beings, and as believers, will eventually become unfunctional if we do not continually keep ourselves supplied with the spiritual life and power that comes from living and walking in the Spirit of God. This was the main problem with the group of people, believers in Christ, who James was writing to in his letter to them. Because this group refused to fully surrender to God and His Spirit and failed to daily refresh themselves through the Spirit that comes from God, this group of believers had become hard and calloused fighting and quarrelling with one another; being envious and hateful toward one another, and were continually doing so. James, in his letter, plainly told them they were becoming enemies of God. So, James exhorted them to first, repent, then begin to seek the Lord, submitting to Him so they would have the power to ‘resist the devil’ and have him flee.
There is no substitute for daily walking and talking with the Lord in true humility before Him and affection for Him. Life becomes a joy instead of a bore when we daily include Him in everything we do. After all, if Jesus Christ truly is our Lord, then we give Him the right to have His say in everything we do or say wouldn’t we?
Blessings – PJ