SCHOOL OF ISRAEL
Mini-Study Guides, 1994-5
"More Than Conquerors"
11. Why Do We Struggle?
Scripture Meditation: Romans 7:7-25
Today we're asking ourselves: Why is it that we resist surrendering every area of our lives to Jesus Christ? And the main reason is that we like things to be under our control.
One of the things that the Holy Order does is this very thing -- stripping things away from people's control, with their permission, of course. Those who have been called into this part of the New Covenant Church of God will probably admit that they have had to face some very uncomfortable things about themselves. This is a part of their spiritual training to become spiritual leaders in the New Covenant Church. Those who have inner gods -- areas of their lives they wish to retain control over -- usually react very fiercely. Like a dog guarding a bone, they will growl and lash out at anyone who tries to remove this sovereignty away from them. We've experienced it hundreds of times. Many of them run away from Christ and the Kingdom.
The sin which Adam and Eve committed in the Garden of Eden was a declaration of independence. One of the consequences of their action was to inflict and afflict us with a disease called "Do It Yourself". We like to be in control of the way our life works. When Christ stands before us asking for complete control, the feeling that arises within us is that of utter helplessness. Our nature dislikes this feeling and struggles to protect us from the sense of defenselessness which full surrender inevitably brings.
So what do we do? We establish some point of compromise. We say to Christ, albeit unconsciously: "I will let You have some areas of my life -- just enough to enable me to still have some feelings of independence. But don't ask me to go down into the desolating feeling of complete and utter helplessness."
But brethren and sisters, that is precisely what God does ask of those who want to be committed to Him. He wants us to be willing to trust Him enough to experience those feelings of helplessness, and throw ourselves into utter abandonment at His feet. Be under no illusions: becoming a victorious New Covenant Christian involves a complete and total surrender of the ego to Jesus, and the willingness not to continue living as an ego-centred person, but a Christ-centred one.
Who doesn't struggle with this issue? I know I do. Who doesn't prefer to hold on to the visible securities of life even when they are in shreds? I know I do. We fear that in having Him we will have nothing left. What fools we are not to believe that He is enough!
There are two or three of us here who are acquainted with a young Swedish man who has experienced one tragedy after another in his life but who stubbornly refuses to yield his ego to Christ. My heart cries out to him: Don't be such a fool! But he won't listen. Instead he runs off and does his own thing, and each time he loses a little more of Christ. Oh the poverty of rebellion and independence! We experienced it in the old church where I fear the word "independent" was brutally twisted round and the saints proclaimed themselves little independent kingdoms -- what tragedy struck them! And people are still doing it, especially when their gods are unmasked.
Brothers and sisters, I did not enjoy writing Mature Discipleship to you, but I was powerfully constrained to do so by the Holy Spirit. The after effects were personally very painful. Yet we all should know that to enter Zion, and to become "more than conquerors" in Christ, we have got to shed our lust for independence and a "do-it-yourself" life. The lie of our own carnal natures must be exposed for what it truly is -- an enemy to God and to all righteousness. Let us pray:
O Father, will I ever be free of the insanity that puts visible security before the Invisible? Will I ever come to trust You more than I trust the things I can touch and see? Yet I must come to that point if I am to live abundantly. Help me, I pray, in Jesus's Name. Amen.
This page was created on 16 May 1998
Updated on 16 May 1998
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