Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I Am Not My Flesh

This was a comment I left on Sami's blog, but I stole it back for my blog because I feel like it is such a good follow-up to my previous post:

I'm really struggling with seeing my Flesh as my identity and not something that is not a part of me. My identity is the one Christ has crafted inside of me. I've been talking with my therapist a LOT about this, and it's only when I can get my mind around the fact that I am the Christ creation inside of me, and I CONTEND with the Flesh, the World, and the Principalities that I am able to experience ANY of the Fruit of the Spirit.

I've been feeling sorry for myself a lot lately. Been struggling with temptations of lust, suicide, wrath, envy, gluttony, idolatry...the list goes on and on.

When I'm not reading a section for a particular study, and I'm just turning to the Word to fill me, my Scripture reading for the last while has been almost exclusively Psalms...especially 31 - 46 and 110 - 118. A couple verses that stand out:

I am scorned by all my enemies and despised by my neighbors--even my friends are afraid to come near me.
When they see me on the street, they turn the other way. - Ps 31:11

But that same Psalm ends with this verse:

So be strong and take courage, all you who put your hope in the LORD! - Ps 31:24

Some other verses:

The LORD hears His people when they call to Him for help. He rescues them from all their troubles.
The LORD is close to the Brokenhearted, He rescues those who are crushed in spirit. - Ps 34:17, 18

My heart is breaking as I remember how it used to be:
I walked among the crowds of worshipers, leading a great procession to the house of God,
singing for joy and giving thanks--it was the sound of a great celebration!
Why am I discouraged? Why so sad?
I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again--my Savior and my God!
Now I am deeply discouraged, but I will remember Your kindness - Ps 42:4, 5a

Who can be compare with the LORD our God, who is enthroned on high?
Far below Him are the heavens and the earth. He stoops to look,
and He lifts the poor from the dirt and the needy from the garbage dump.
He sets them among princes even the princes of His own people!
He gives the barren woman a home, so that she becomes a happy mother.
Praise the LORD - Ps 113:5-9

As I read the Psalms, I can so readily see that none of what I'm experiencing is new to God. The Psalmist speaks so eloquently what is going on in my heart whether it be doubt, joy, pain, or hope.

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