Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The 7 Experiment by Jen Hatmaker – Week 2


Lots of powerful discussion began this week’s group meeting.  A woman from South Africa shared what true poverty is!  In the United States, true poverty doesn’t exist.  We are so clueless, comparing apples to oranges, so to speak.  I was reminded that this is a war we are waging.  We must be deliberate and take time to develop a strategy for attack and then implement it.  This is tough when we have an inaccurate view of the battlefield.  We must keep the ultimate goal in mind:  removing obstacles between you and Christ.

Is food an obstacle for you?  It is for me.  It has been for longer than I can remember.  I’ve tried lots of strategies using my own power.  I’ve dieted and exercised, lost and gained.  I’ve prayed for willpower and miraculous deliverance and faster metabolism and better discipline to eat right and exercise.  I’ve even given up, asking God to make me who He intends me to be physically all on His own.  But I’m starting to see that it’s not about the number on the scale or the tape measure or the tag in my pants.  It’s about me allowing food to come between me and Jesus.  It’s about me succumbing to those seemingly harmless whispers from the devil who wants to keep me captive.

I want to live in victory and I know that means keeping my eyes on Christ.  But that’s hard, isn’t it?  War isn’t easy.  So what’s the battle plan?  I guess I need to establish chain of command, first.  Jesus is my Commander.  As a good soldier, I must obey His commands.  So, what does God say about food?

In Genesis 1:29, God gives every seed-bearing plant on the face of the earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it for food.  Matthew 6:25 tells us not to worry about our life, what we eat or drink and what we wear.  In John 4:34, Jesus says His food “is to do the will of Him Who sent me and to finish His work.”  Scripture says lots more, and Jen leads us to read some beautiful passages this week in 2 Chronicles and Leviticus.  Can you believe that?  2 Chronicles and Leviticus!  I wish she would’ve also led us to the New Testament where all foods are declared clean in Acts 10 and 11 and 1 Timothy 4:3-5.  Anyway, what I’ve learned is:  it’s about the heart and attitude, and there is only one possible way to get that right.  This leads me to my first battle strategy.

First step in the battle plan:  Seek FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness.

I’ve tried to begin my day on most days with Bible reading and prayer.  As a result of this week of study, I plan to be more deliberate about doing so.

Heavenly Father, I come to You in the wonderful name of my risen Savior, Jesus Christ, to thank You for loving me as I am but refusing to leave me that way!  I don’t like the pain that comes with change, but I trust You to prune me so that my life will be more fruitful for Your kingdom.  I trust You to prosper me and not harm me.  So, I ask that Your will be done in my life in all areas, not just food.  Please draw me to You each morning – FIRST thing.  And if my battle plan needs to change, Lord, make it clear to me.  I love You, Papa.

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