Kept in flight

So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet. (James 4:7-10)

Does this sound close to what we are seeing today in our world: Wars, quarrels, wanting our own way, lusting for what we don't have, but probably also don't need? If you said "yes", you are probably observing some of the same things I am. The problem begins with the "war within" each of us - wanting things we really don't need or things which will eventually be our undoing. Life deals us all kinds of options - learning how to sort through those options is imperative to living well. 

Getting so close to the things this world has to offer can actually lead to us straying dangerously close to the line of compromise all the time. As Christians, we are to be controlling the temperature of the culture around us, not being thermometers who just "adjust" to the temperature the culture affords. Are we bringing society into alignment with the principles God desires, or are we adjusting our beliefs, principles, and morals to what society declares to be the "norm" of the day? If we are just adjusting all the time, we end up flirting with the things of this world every chance we get, and this will ultimately end in us being enemies of God. Something I don't think any of us really desires!

How do we accomplish this "living in the world" without becoming just "like the world"? We let God work his will in us. We don't just "give God permission" to work his will in us - we LET him actually do it. We do a lot of giving God permission - as when we pray "change me", "create this or that anew in me", but we also do a whole lot less of the "letting" God do what it is he wants to do in us.

Letting God do his will in our lives is something akin to stepping back, yielding control of the reins, and then allowing the direction of our lives by the expert. As a teen, a friend of the family would take me up in his small plane and as soon as we were airborne, he'd turn to me and say, "take the controls". To say the least, I never learned how to fly that plane - I just learned how to keep the nose of the plane headed in the right direction! I know the truth - he still was operating everything from the pilot's seat. He remained the expert pilot - I was only "playing" at being in control. At best, we all play at being in control of our lives - I think we might just want to consider how fortunate we are to actually have someone still truthfully in control!

When we turn our back on the sin and focus instead on the one who desires to take control (Jesus), we no longer see the sin in front of us. We see the Lord - and when we see him - we don't have room for the sin in our view! God tells us to determine our focus - HIM. Then choose to remain consistent in that focus - not dabbling in the things of this world one day, and then the heavenly the next. Whenever we dabble, we don't have a determined focus.

In the world, but not of it? In the world, and having a hard time leaving it behind? Get your focus redirected. Our eyes fixed on Jesus yields someone in control who actually knows how the controls work together to keep us in flight! Just sayin!


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