“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and purity” (1st Timothy 4:12, NIV).
“So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (1st Corinthians 10:12).
“The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied” (Proverbs 13:4, NIV).
This past week, my wonderful sister came to spend her spring break with me. As awesome as it was, it was very stressful and annoying as well; I learned about myself and my selfishness. But this is not what I want to talk about.
Before she came, I told myself that I will not stop my routine, especially my time alone with God (I like to have quality quiet time)– I wanted to show God that He is first, regardless of who is around. I wanted to be a good example to her ( I really took Paul’s charge to Timothy to heart), in hopes that she would be encouraged to do the same, perhaps even join me and whatnot. This was not the reality, however. Honestly,I had my quiet time on Monday… and for the rest of the week, nothing.
I am not sure what I felt, but I felt “bad”. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaming my sister for anything; I had an expectation of myself that wasn’t fulfilled. Perhaps I didn’t want it to seem as if I wasn’t paying attention to her? Perhaps I didn’t want to seem/feel stuck up or “holier than thou”? Perhaps there just wasn’t time? I don’t know. And it wasn’t that I didn’t read my Bible, I also didn’t spend time in prayer, meditation or memorizing scripture; it was as if God was non-existent to me.
I felt empty.
The scariest part for me was how quickly and willingly I yielded to my flesh for a lot of things, i.e. yelling and succumbing to anger, not loving or extending grace, entertaining depraved thoughts, viewing and searching for sexually immoral materials, etc. It scared me! And the lesson I learned is that if I don’t feed the Spirit, I feed the flesh— there is no such thing as being stagnant when it comes to our relationship with God because we are either moving forward or falling backwards.
Nevertheless, I thank God for the week, for the lesson and the growth and the sorrow (2nd Corinthians 7:10) that I experienced. I wish I hadn’t yielded to the flesh, though, because for a second I doubted my salvation, I was scared and ashamed to approach my Father, I believed God couldn’t love me anymore. I thank God that I was able to confess my sins, and I thank Him for His forgiveness and cleansing. I am now more aware of feeding the Spirit, of doing my due diligence (truly putting God first), so that I will be able to stand and firmly resist the wiles of the enemy.