31st March – Thursday in Easter Octave

This is a reflection from Premier Christian Media (Dr Micha Jazz) entitled “I will refuse to look at anything vile and vulgar.” (Ps 101:3)

One thing I need to review in the light of the resurrection is the object of my desires. The stronggod-heart-e1416314703914 feeling to have something is the nature of desire. Sadly I can trawl through endless reviews searching out mobile phones or wander purposefully around clothes shops inspecting shirts and jackets at what in real terms are ridiculous prices. Yet, I so often struggle to experience a strong desire to seek after God.

I know that my mind provides something of a highway for unhealthy thoughts. I am dealing with a range of mental ‘chatter’ and images from sexual temptation through to consumer desire. Anything along this spectrum can cause me great anxiety from spiritual guilt through to jealousy and depression. I remain subject to the impact of external sources of stimulus and neglect the source of life that abides within me. Stirring God’s spirit is a challenge, one I forget about as frequently as I neglect.

The longer I entertain this ‘chatter’ in my head, the harder it is to resist its allure and I become lost in pursuit of insubstantial imaginings that owe their existence and power to my own inability and unwillingness to cut them off at source. What response can I make? Well I must stir up the Spirit that is within me. I engage with a sequence of prayers that I know by heart; the Apostles’ Creed, then the Lord’s Prayer, then the Gloria and finally the Sinner’s Prayer*. To pray internally or better still aloud demands my attention. It disrupts the mental traffic carrying me off into unhealthy places. It declares the reality of God and reminds me of who I am.

Reflecting upon the year past, I can celebrate finding a way to hijack the external influences that so easily take up residence within. Yet, I must also acknowledge that I’m not always too successful and find myself dislocated from God in moments of imagined self-indulgence, failing to control my eyes and my mind from leading me from integrity of heart.

QUESTION: What distracts you from God and leads you on an unhealthy detour from the walk of faith?

PRAYER: Lord, lead me not into temptation but deliver me from evil.

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*Sinner’s Prayer: Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Saviour. In Your Name. Amen (Billy Graham)

 

 

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