FOCUS CONFIDENTLY ON YOUR NEW CREATION IDENTITY
– Ray E Horton
So many Christians want to live Christlike lives but get hung up by the resistance of their flesh and experience the accusations of the enemy. We must remember that Jesus understands, having lived in a flesh body like us. “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15).
I was ministering to a person struggling with feelings and acting on them. I realized that what I wrote might help many, so I’ll repeat it here:
YOUR REAL IDENTITY
“The understanding of spirit, soul and body is so important to our Christian walk. Remember, your former self, your ‘old man’ is dead and gone, and you received a re-created, perfected new spirit when you were Born Again. That is your new nature, and you have received there the gift of God’s righteousness in Christ. That’s your real identity, and what God chooses to see, the fruit of Jesus’ work of the cross and Holy Spirit living in you.
Focus confidently on your new creation identity, and you will speed the overcoming process. Your flesh wants attention! Instead, put your attention on your spirit and spend time in God’s presence
“Trouble is, we are not in touch with our perfected spirits as we are our souls (mind, will and emotions). Your soul is still in process as you renew your mind by communing with God and spending time in His Word, and the old baggage left behind by the old man who died takes some time to fall off. It’s a life-long process. But don’t focus on that; rather, focus confidently on your new creation identity, and you will speed the overcoming process. Your flesh wants attention! Instead, put your attention on your spirit and spend time in God’s presence.
“We must remember that feelings are just feelings; it’s what we do with them that counts. Dwell on them and they can become strongholds in the mind. Instead of trying to get rid of negative feelings, which might even make them worse, do as Apostle Paul suggests and change the subject: ‘Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honest, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think on these things‘ (Phil. 4:8). It is good to meditate on and act on the Word of God.
“You want strength to overcome areas of sin and weakness? The Bible says, ‘the joy of the Lord is your strength.‘ That joy is internal, not based on external circumstances. How do you get that joy? Well, you already have it to draw on as one of the fruit of the spirit within you. How is it accessed? The Bible tells us that ‘in His presence is the fullness of joy.’ When two people pay attention to one another, they are in each other’s presence. Same with the Lord.
Rejoice in the Lord
“Back to Phil. 4. Paul tells us in vs. 4 to ‘rejoice in the Lord always,’ then repeats himself, showing the importance of his words. How do you do that? The next verse tells us: ‘…The Lord is at hand,’ that is, He is as near as your own heart, and you will rejoice as you draw near to hear His voice to you directly, reminding you of His love, and that He will never leave you nor forsake you. How do you draw near and into His presence? The next two verses tell us it is by prayer and thanksgiving:
“‘Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with gratitude, make your requests known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will protect your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus‘ (Phil. 4:6-7). Look at the result of prayer with thanksgiving. God’s supernatural peace protects your heart and mind – exactly what is needed to overcome negative feelings and every other situation.
“So, let me suggest meditating on Phil. 4:4-8 and putting these verses into practice. Like Paul then says in vs. 9, I too will say to you: ‘Do those things which you have both learned and received, and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.'”