Genesis 37:1-38:30 / Matthew 12:22-50 / Psalm 16:1-11 / Proverbs 3:27-32
Matthew 12:43-45 – The story of the unclean spirit who returns and brings with him seven other spirits to dwell in his former “house”.
People love the ‘new year’. It’s a chance for us to start over, clean the slate and tidy up the things in our lives that are out of order. We make promises and resolutions to join the gym, go on the latest super-diet, organize our closets, clean out the garage, etc… it feels so good to get organized! By the end of January most of us are still looking pretty good, but, by the middle of February, the junk starts to pile up again.So it goes with our spiritual lives. We can commit to tidy things up for a season by keeping up with our Bible studies, personal devotions, church activities, etc…we do great for awhile and even begin to experience change in our lives. But, the cares of life build up, business increases and distractions mount. Our time with the Lord gets shifted, then juggled and finally moved to the back seat. What was once a clean and fertile ground for God’s word to take root, is now a place of clutter.
We must CONTEND to keep our spiritual house clean. We were created with a space in our lives that can only truly be filled with an authentic relationship with God. If we don’t purposefully fill ourselves with the things of Him and pursue a real, passionate, personal relationship with Him, that space will get filled with something else. When you stop to consider all the things of this world that are competing to occupy the space of our lives (thought, time, emotion, values, actions), it’s a pretty scary thought. We can bet that Satan is eager to fill any nook or cranny he can get his way into.
As Christians, we must be purposeful and deliberate about our personal relationship with the Lord. If we aren’t pursuing Him, filling ourselves with His word, prayer and time alone with Him each day, we can be sure that we will be filled by something. Let’s be people that determine to seek the Lord – that is our only hope to get clean, stay clean and grow to new levels as we become the people God created us to be.