WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH, FAN YOUR FLAMES

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WHEN THE GOING GETS TOUGH, FAN YOUR FLAMES

We’ve all been there. Life gets a little too much for us and the burdens that we carry get the better of us. At that time, we feel a little lost, a little crazy; like everything is spinning out of control. We tell ourselves, ‘get a grip’, but try as we might, nothing works. So what do we do?

You know beloved, in truth, those kinds of emotions have no place in our being because we are made of sterner stuff. Indeed, Paul tells us that

“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Beating in our hearts is a spirit of power, of love and of a sound mind. Fear, worry, anxiety and nerves have no place in our being. But why is that the case? How can we be so sure that our spirit is indeed one of power, love and a sound mind?

Well, it’s simple, really, check the facts.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declared the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 [NIV]

God has plans for you, our Father wants you prosperous and hopeful of the future. So if there are troubles staring you in the face, those are not part of His plans.

That is not to say that trouble don’t exist. Of course they do, because somehow; either by our actions of commission or omission, or by Satan’s designs to prove that God isn’t as powerful as everyone thinks He is; troubles slip into our lives and mess up the perfect plans that our Father has for us.

But here is where we can know that we have a spirit of power; because

“No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

That means that whatever befalls you has been adjusted and adapted to human experience so that you can bear it. And this is because God is faithful to BOTH His Word and to His compassionate nature and will not let you be tempted and tried and assayed beyond your ability and strength of resistance and power to endure. At the same time, He will always provide the way out so that you may be capable and strong and powerful to bear up under it patiently (1 Corinthians 10:13 [AMP])

But the crucial fact that you need to take away from this passage of scripture is this – God knows.

If there is a pain in your heart, yes, God knows. If there is an insurmountable situation staring you in the face, yes, God knows. If you are facing untold pressures and stress, yes, God knows. If you and all around you don’t know the solution to your problems, yes, God knows. And this is exactly why you can have the confidence that yours is a spirit of power, because – God knows.

You see, the power that beats in your spirit comes not from you, but from Him. There really is nothing that you need to do on your own, simply because Jesus said,

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8

“And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it.” John 14:13-14

“Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” Mark 11:24

So who does the overcoming? Who does the giving? Who does the opening? Jesus does it all. In fact, as we have seen in our earlier messages, this is how the prophet Isaiah describes Him.

“Who has believed our report?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” Isaiah 53:1

Jesus is the arm of God, and so our power comes from Him, because He is the one that will get all things done.

Now then, because Jesus is the arm of God, because Jesus is our source of power, need we worry?

“Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” Matthew 6:26

“Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Matthew 6:28-29

“Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Matthew 10:29-31

“Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:31-33

So how then do we stop ourselves from worrying? How do we prevent ourselves from spinning out of control? How do we unlock, access and remember that

“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

We do this.

“Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.” 2 Timothy 1:6

Or to be more precise,

“That is why I remind you to fan into flame the gracious gift of God, [that inner fire—the special endowment] which is in you through the laying on of my hands [with those of the elders at your ordination].” 2 Timothy 1:6 [AMP]

That spirit, that gracious gift of God, that special endowment of a spirit of power, love and a sound mind, that is already in you the moment you accepted Christ. And that is the spirit which you must fan into flame.

But how do we access and unlock that spirit? Well, how do you excite yourself, psyche yourself up before an important event? You run through the facts in your head, don’t you? You keep on reminding yourself of the truths. You go through your notes. You run through your presentations. You keep reminding yourself of what it is you must know and why it is you should know all that. So if doing that can psyche yourself up for a presentation, how different is it with God’s word?

You know, at the end of the day, this is not a new way of thinking. This is not a new method of controlling your emotions. This is not a new doctrine. All this is, is the same old instruction that has been told to you since you were a child in Christ – read your Bible and pray every day.

You see, how do you know that your parents love you if you don’t spend time with them and pay enough attention to the things that they do for you? How do you understand just how your parents shower their love upon you if you don’t spend time with them to understand their language of love?

So how will you ever be able to remember just how much our Father loves you and wants you to prosper if you don’t spend time with Him in prayer and reading the promises that He has made to you?

Beloved, life is tough. There’s no denying that. But it is also true that our Father loves you. He is watching over you all the time and making sure that even if troubles befall, whatever it is that you are going through, is never too much for you to bear.

So remind yourself of that and fan the flames of the spirit that is in you and let His spirit of power give you the sound mind that should rightfully reside in you always.

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