Now I also want to show that the love of sin that we all are guilty of even as believers cause us to fall into unbelief. Those hurtful emotions I spoke of: bitterness, resentment, anguish, disappointment, discouragement, rejection coming from our own thoughts that we say to ourselves after hearing and believing what others tells us, in fact causes even believers to feel powerless against strongholds. The bible terms them as heart that is hit by fiery arrows or darts, stirring up these emotions to drive sin and I agree. (probably will write a blog post on the armor of God next time). Pain seeks pleasure in sin. It is definitely hard for believers to bringing every pain back to the cross and accepting forgiveness afresh because Jesus neither condemns us. He doesn’t. The book of Hebrews says so: with a reminder of prayer for “Today” (beginning with Heb 3:12-19)
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. But exhort one another daily, while it is called Today; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; While it is said, Today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation. For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses. But with whom was he grieved forty years? was it not with them that had sinned, whose carcases fell in the wilderness? And to whom he sware that they should not enter into his rest, but to them that do not believed? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.”
Continue on to Hebrews 4:
Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. For we which have believed do enter into rest, as he said, As I have sworn in my wrath, if they shall enter into my rest: although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.
Labouring into his rest and How? : Because the Word of God is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart, as all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. We believe in Jesus who is? A great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God. He walked in the weaknesses of man, feeling our infirmities (frailty), tempted as we are in every way, yet without sin (the Man that loved us so much that he said, I will put off the protection that the Father has granted me and understand how man really feels – weak, tired, hungry, thirsty, sorrowful, pain, helpless, lost, poor and broken.) Like a sheep led astray to the slaughter, so was the Son of Man being led to be crucified. “Niether do I condemn you, go and sin no more”. “It is the sick that needs a doctor, not those who are well”, why do you think Jesus is “a friend of sinners”?, Jesus is like a magnet drawn to weaknesses, because it gives Him great pleasure to do what He do best, be Savior to call unto the streets those who are needy, to the widows, the fatherless, the lame, the blind, because the guests whom are suppose to be invited had a wedding to attend, had a plot of land (property and business) to see, has a car to test drive, and on and on…
Please don’t let the possessions and wealth, or the bitterness and anguish, resentment, discouragement, disappointment, despair (hopelessness) be a weight that withhold us from pressing on to believing that God’s promise of us inheriting Jesus. To overcome this ground of thorns, pray for one another, and encourage one another in the faith, confess with honesty if anyone is wrong so that we can forgive one another.
There was a moment of my life where I felt bitter because I didn't had the charisma to speak like how some other guys could flatter the girls. Oh yes, boy was I jealous, and it happened during a church camp. I really wanted to know God more, but at that time, my mind kept telling me that I must keep trying to reach out to God to seek Him and find Him, because He can be found, but I never truly understand it. All my dad told me was "I had to die to self". I was just struggling with this reminder my dad gave to me. Then I began to feel resentment towards my parents because I never felt like they understand me, those days I had in my teens were an emotional roller coaster and for about 1 and a half to 2 years I went into depression, and didn't want to go to church at all. I felt really distant from God, and believed that He really didn't care anymore. I was a guy that always cry at the corner of my bedroom because I share a room with my sister. I even watched p*rn as a result of gender insecurity and crossed dressed my sister's clothing, because I never felt appreciated. I closed up really fast at that time, the depression was a tough time that I went through, because I even felt the world crashing on me, but I thank the Lord that by His mercy I never attempted suicide or taken drugs. In my darkest moments, the Holy Spirit was my comforter, and hope as I cling on to what I always believed "I am special and set apart by God, he will never leave me". For a great period of time, I didn't attend church by spend those days playing online games, thinking that I will feel better by concealing my pain in sinful pleasures. It didn't help at all, but only grew more fear in me for hiding in darkness. It was only after 4 years that I went into state of hallucinations from high fever that my parents held my hands together and prayed in spiritual battle, I was in fact demonized for sleeping with a demon - a mannequin (because my mom was learning to haircut), and I was sex crazy at that time, worse defiled my parents bed. I cried out to the Lord to help me in my distress, I was amazed I even did so, but the Lord came and rescue me. I was sent to mental hospital and then moved to a hospital to rest because of my restlessness. You can count me as the worst of all sinners, the abominations of desolations and I'd say, that's me. It took me about 7 years that now I looked back, it can only be by God's grace that kept me through those times, He never abandoned me at all but slowly melt away all the ice on my heart so that my heart was tender again to receive His love. Now, the Lord put in my heart a song of hope and joy that I'd humm going to work or coming back home from work. My life was indeed delivered from addictions and replaced with a desire for His Word that I can only say that my effort cannot give me such a desire. My salvation is really a testimony from darkness into light. I cannot, be He saves when I cried to Him.
I thank you Jesus for sending the Holy Spirit as our helper, sealing us unto the day of redemption. I ask of you to put in each of our hearts the desire to accept Jesus in areas of our lives where we have not trusted Him wholeheartedly before, so that we may believe on Him as: (to the poor) our portion, (to the helpless) our shield, (to the weak) our strength, (to the captive) our deliverer, (to the sorrowful) our comforter, (to the labourer) our provider, (to the lost) our shepherd, (to the dying) our salvation and redeemer, (to the wronged) our vindicator and peace, (to the discouraged and disappointed) the lifter of our heads and the glory of our life.
Blessed are those who believe on Jesus with all of their hearts and withhold nothing back from Him, because all things are a passing shadow in contrast to the wonder and beauty of His glorious grace. I pray O Lord that may each believer grow in faith to hold back nothing from you, as You freely gave us everything You have, so that we can truly proclaim from our hearts on the day we see Jesus, that we have nothing at all, as all our loved ones, all our inheritance, all our answers, are found in Jesus alone. To Him be all the glory forever and ever Amen.