Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our Thoughts, Imaginations, and Fantasies

Book Marketing Jesus' Way (2 Timothy 2:25)

Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our Thoughts, Imaginations, and Fantasies.As we continue to study how we oppose ourselves, let’s examine how our thoughts, imaginations, and fantasies work against the desires God places in our hearts.

We feed our hearts with purpose and success when we build fantasy worlds in our minds with honorable thoughts, God’s word, and perfect and pure images.

Serve God with a perfect heart and willing mind, for he searches all hearts, and understands all the imaginations of our thoughts. (1 Chronicles 28:9)

Once good things are conceived in our hearts we can look forward in hope to the finished outcome.

Guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. (Proverbs 4:23)

God gifts us with the ability to imagine what is not and create what will be. But when we use words, said or silent, in perverse ways, those things which we create can destroy. Consider how many times — by simply creating a conclusion in our mind and without any evidence — we’ve believed in the negative motives of others. We expect a reply from a text, email, phone call, but none comes. We assume the worst. We conceive a negative trait in the other party. we begin to rehearse in our mind what we will say.

Consider how many times you sought to accomplish something small, perhaps even great, but at the time of the “big reveal” you silently expect failure, loss, judgement. Novelist Sarah Dessen writes, “If you expect the worst, you’ll never be disappointed.” For many, these are the fantasy worlds we build: ones constructed without hope, expectation, or risk.

Jesus calls us to hope, expect, and risk all for him. He calls us to love our enemies, not portray them as evil individuals deserving of judgement and punishment. To do good to those who hate us, not shame them. To bless those who curse us, to pray for those who mistreat us, to give to everyone who asks and lend without expecting anything in return. The fantasy worlds created in the Spirit of Christ are large, often messy, sometimes dangerous, but seldom boring.

Rather than imagining the worst in others, expect their best. Help them reach their best.

Rather than preparing for bad news, plan for success. Risk your heart in hope.

Jeremiah 29:11 is perhaps the most misapplied verse in all of Scripture, but the spirit behind the verse accurately reflects the heart of God.

“I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

If we will but claim the back half of this promise, hope and a future, our fantasy worlds will begin to more accurately reflect the creative character of God.

Let us stop opposing ourselves with our negative thoughts, imaginations, and fantasies and begin supporting ourselves with thoughts, imaginations, and fantasies inspired by God’s Holy Spirit.

 

 

Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our Ignorance of God’s character

Book Marketing Jesus' Way (2 Timothy 2:25)

The Kingdom of God Is Voice Activated — Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our Ignorance of God’s characterIn meekness the servant of the Lord should instruct those who oppose themselves.
(2 Timothy 2:25)

How might those of us in Jesus oppose ourselves?

  • With our words
  • With a lack of knowledge of God’s character
  • With our thoughts
  • With our sins and unrighteousness
  • With our passivity
  • With our actions

Let’s look at how we oppose ourselves with our foolish ideas of God’s character.

If you have ever heard someone say, “My god would never …” or “the god I worship would not …” then you will recognize how important it is to accurately know God and his character. When we misunderstand the God who made the heavens and earth and attribute qualities to him that are incorrect — or worse, slanderous — then we have created a little god, a different god, a god that more closely reflects our character than his.

God Is Constant

We change. Our minds, bodies, and feelings change. Our attitudes and beliefs about God change. But God never changes. He is the same today as he was light years ago and will be light years from now. God is constant. He never wavers.

I am the Lord, I change not. (Malachi 3:6)

The Father of the heavenly lights does not change. (James 1:17)

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)

We oppose ourselves and create barriers for our success when we change our view of God from who he is to who we wish he were. When we change God to fit our view of who we think he should be, we are creating an idol and idols have no power. Our little gods cannot help us sell more books or bring a harvest of blessings. Only God can do the miraculous. When we accept that he is the God of consistency, the God who never changes, who never tires, who never gives up and quits on us, we tap into the same power that created planets and stars and all that is good.

God Is All Powerful

By the word of the Lord were the heavens made. (Psalm 33:6)

All things were made by him. Without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1:3)

There is nothing too difficult for God. No mistake, no poor book launch, no amount of negative reviews can prevent God from acting on your behalf. All things are made by him. If we lack anything, we should ask him. He gives generously to all without finding fault. (James 1:5) But when we fail to plug into his power, when we fail to ask — when we think it is beneath us to ask — we oppose ourselves.

Let us begin to ask God today to use his power for our good in order that we might do his will more perfectly. (Romans 8:28)

God Is Full of Perfect Wisdom

The depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge are God’s! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! (Romans 11:33)

We oppose ourselves when we fail to ask God for his perfect wisdom. Many a poor decision ends in failure because we failed to ask for God’s perfect wisdom at the beginning. Perhaps in pride, perhaps in ignorance, but thinking we know best is one of the worst ways we oppose ourselves. Ask God at the start and our endings will be certain.

God Is Full of Beauty, Faithfulness, Generosity, Gentleness, Goodness, Grace, Holiness, Kindness, Love, Mercy, Joy, Peace, Patience, and Righteousness, 

There are so many wonderful qualities of God that is perhaps easier to say:

Whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, whatever is excellent, whatever is worthy of praise, these are the qualities of God. (Philippians 4:8-9)

Anytime we think less of God than he is, we oppose ourselves and hinder our success. Anytime we believe he wants less for us, we oppose ourselves and hinder our success. Worse, in doing so we diminish the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross. He came that we may have life, and have a life so full that it’s pressed into our hearts and flowing out.” (John 10:10)

Know the character of God. Read his word and you will see him for who he is. Read the words of Jesus and you will gain a larger picture of God and his fullness. Finally, if you are in Christ, then pray that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:19-21) When we reach this level of completeness in Christ, we will no longer have any desire to oppose ourselves.

The Kingdom of God Is Voice Activated — Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our Words

Book Marketing Jesus' Way (2 Timothy 2:25)

Let Us Stop Opposing Ourselves With Our WordsIn meekness the servant of the Lord should instruct those who oppose themselves.
(2 Timothy 2:25)

How might those of us in Jesus oppose ourselves?

  • With our words
  • With a lack of knowledge of God’s character
  • With our thoughts
  • With our sins and unrighteousness
  • With our passivity
  • With our actions

Let’s look at how our words oppose ourselves. The Kingdom of God is voice activated. Words matter. Words create.  All of what we know of heaven and earth began with a word from God.

God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. (Genesis 1)

Throughout all of chapter one of Genesis God speaks and things are. Light, sky, dry land, seas, plants and trees — the Sun, Moon and stars — creatures that live in the sea and creatures that fly.

Our words also create: ideas, concepts, stories … our words inspire, encourage, renew hope. But our words also can dull eyes, ears, and hearts, discourage, and destroy life. In writing, in our work, the words we speak reflect what we expect to happen.

The woman with an issue of blood said, If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole. (Mark 5:28)

Blind Bartimaeus cried out, “Jesus, thou Son of David, have mercy on me.” (Luke.18:38)

A man with leprosy came to Jesus and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean.” (Mark 1:40-45)

Our words spoken aloud and silently make us whole, give us sight, cleanse us of all unrighteousness when the focus of our faith is in Jesus.

A popular commercial asks: “What’s in your wallet.” Perhaps it’s time we ask: “What’s in my heart?”

Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. (Matthew 12:34)

Guard your heart with all diligence, for out of your heart flow the issues of life. (Proverbs 4:23)

“The Spirit gives life. The flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.” – Jesus (John 6:63)

The next time someone pays you a compliment, do not say, “Oh, it was nothing.” Our actions are something. They spring from our heart. And if we are filled with the Spirit of Jesus, life is in our words.

If you believe your books, your writing, your blog, your talks, sermons, conversations with others are of value, declare it to yourself. Accept compliments from others. Rejoice and praise Jesus when you win awards, receive a positive review, receive a book contract.

Work with God. Work with yourself. When we do this, our work will prosper.