Okay here are the 3 questions for consideration:
What is stronger?
1. Love or evil?
2. Gentleness or force?
3. Myself or Jesus?
We all know the right answer when the questions are posed so simply, for scripture itself states it all so beautifully clear:
Gentleness is stronger: 'The Lord’s bond-servant must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth,' 2 Timothy 2:24-25.
Again gentleness is stronger: '..sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;' 1 Peter 3:15.
Jesus is stronger: 'But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.' Galatians 5:16.
Again God is stronger: 'You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.' 1 John 4:4
So then, why do we often struggle, fighting battles in our own strength? Why do we let our flesh lead rather than the blessed Holy Spirit?
This is what I am thinking about today, for I am not perfect. I need to continually stay in a place of true humility to Jesus and fight my flesh.
It is so easy to fall into the enemy's plan of division, when we get puffed up and feel as if everything is against us...
We feel isolated and afraid...the two very things The Lord does not give! For The Lord brings about relationship, unity and peace.
This is not to say that our experiences will be easy. Rather that even when we find ourselves in a trial, if we fight our fleshly response, and seek His wisdom above our own natural inclinations, we will experience His peace and the result will be evident good fruit.
Here are my thoughts for your own reflection:
1. Love does not mean that I have to accept everything and hold to no moral values of my own, or that I need to accept liberal theology – Rather it means I will love someone despite their flaws when no one else will, and that The Lord provides the right time and place for the Truth to be heard.
2. Speaking gently does not mean I will not discuss difficult topics – Rather I will speak from my own experience when asked, not to just force my opinion.
3. Being led by Jesus means that I will fight my battles His way – Rather than mine. This means I will be less anxious about what I need to do and that I will be more prayerful, enabling Him to go before me and make the way. It means sometimes I will be silent. I will understand that I may only play a small part in a much bigger picture. I will realise I am not the only instrument God will use, and He loves the lost more than I do, so I should never become a stumbling block for someone else.
When I am led by Jesus, I am not led by my theology or apologetic – rather His wisdom and love which is the true power to break through strongholds. Leading myself results in exhaustion rather than renewed strength.
When I am led by Jesus, I seek Him as the fount of all peace and wisdom that He truly is – for we can bear no fruit without Him.
In His love, Melanie.
Let me leave you with this song for further quite reflection: