I remember the nights back in 2003, I spent working on this image.
It would later serve as a catalyst…as a reminder to move forward into its prophetic promises. At first, I tried in my own vain effort, especially focusing on ‘Thoughts not for Sale’. I eluded mindsets and patterns of thinking that I had long held dear…finally challenging them, confronting them and disciplining myself to work them out before I act upon them, and eventually tossing aside thoughts or thought patterns that either came by way of negative external influences or from habit.
This did help somewhat, but there were many thought patterns that I felt powerless to change. The bit though about ‘Be Reborn’ came to pass and I got a new life. In this new life, there is something that stands true, I believe it to be true..It comes from the Holy Bible: the book of 2nd Corinthians, chapter 10: verses 3 – 5 and it says, “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.” There are issues with which, without the spirit of God within me, I’d feel powerless to change or even forget my pride and submit it to God. I have seen transformation and rejuvenation within myself that I had at the time of doing the image above, not believed to be possible. In some areas of my life, I still don’t recognize myself, but I don’t stay too long there in awe, I keep moving, lest I fall into the arms of pride.
But it has been freeing to know that I am neither alone in my fight, nor fighting against just myself, but there are forces, external to me that are waging serious and disciplined anarchy against me. This reality has upon meditation, brought me always to an alertness about my thoughts, hopes and feelings, causing me to frequently evaluate and clear out my mind’s ‘cache’. I’m never beyond being tempted by inner desires to sharpen my blood-thirsty fangs of lust, to throw my righteousness down a dungy dark stairwell and walk away freely into careless abandon, to run in the opposite direction of the laws of the land or slap the silly out of the next person who opposes my views…stuff like that, y’know..but I don’t want to get too graphic…The bottom line is, I’m not beyond temptation and the Bible says I never will be. “No temptation has overtaken you except 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. I can be assured that God will not let me be overcome, but it is also said that ‘the weapons of our warfare are not carnal’..so can I evade the temptations or win through wishful thinking or physical force? Mmm..No. I need ‘weapons’. Is there anywhere in the Bible, where battle gear is discussed? Yes, in Ephesians 6: 10 – 18…let’s check it out:
“10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 14 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; 16 above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. 17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; 18 praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.”
I’ll leave us to meditate on that…Are there any ‘thoughts or feelings’ you feel you should challenge the next time they float into your mind or heart?