Sunday, December 26, 2010

Choose Your Side

There are many stories and verses in the Bible that I love, in fact, some are such favorites that I write them on our walls at home.  The wide open space of our walls are so tempting, I have to write on them, and it's fun :-) My children indulge in the same treat of writing on their bedroom wall, it's their place of art.
One of the verses that I have on my closet wall, so I can be sure to see it everyday is in Matthew 12:30. Jesus is talking to the Pharisees and basically saying to them that they are either for Him or against Him. In my Bible, I have the New American Standard Version on one side, and then the Message on the other. When I'm just reading for pleasure I like The Message; it's poetic, and direct, I get it.  This verse is especially direct, no beating around the bush going on here:
"This is war, and there is no neutral ground. If you're not on my side, you're the enemy; if you're not helping, you're making things worse."
I believe, we are most certainly at war! Thankfully, when Christ died at the cross He won the war, but do I choose to be on His side? Do I choose to help others get on His side?
The battle is that ongoing spiritual battle, I face it everyday. The battle in my mind, where I have to consciously choose to surrender my all to Him.  I can't just give Him a little of myself, and save the rest for later, that's not being on His side.  It's a total surrender to His will for my life. No neutral ground. As I step forward in my daily walk and He reveals truth to me, and shows me areas that need to go, what will I choose?  Will I continue to hang on to that anger?  Or, will I choose to remain jealous? What about the mask I wear in public, can I give that to him? Will I hand Him my insecurities or my pain of rejection?
For me, I have had to give Him all of these. And, sometimes they come back and try to hit me in the face, it is war afterall. I have to choose to step aside and know that if I remove my mask, He will protect me.  If I give Him my anger, He will walk me through my fear. If I let go of my jealousy, He will show me Who I am IN Him. If I give Him my insecurity and my fear of rejection, He will bind up the wounds that caused them, and bring healing to my heart.
Now, I have to ask myself, am I helping others in their journey? Or am I making it worse? So many times, I have made it worse, because I have not been able to surrender my own stuff, and I have not been able to take a stand for His side. There is no neutral ground, if I'm not helping, I'm making it worse. That's a sobering thought, and I don't like it. It brings me back to my relationships.
Am I helping? In the past when I chose to run from the pain of relationships, was I helping? Now, when I speak too soon, or get too busy, or find myself too tired to be present for my children, am I helping? In my friendships, when I forget their needs or do not pursue their hearts, am I helping?
I have to look at my life daily, and pray that I will choose Him, and that in my walk I will help others choose Him too. He has already chosen me, no one can snatch me out of His hand, but  I do have a choice everyday, there is no neutral ground!
Say That Again, Father.

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