How to Live a Victorious Christian Life

It is possible! We walk this earth desiring to be victorious over our flesh – wanting a life of victory, to be victorious over sin. We have fallen and have tried to stand up once more. Our tired life have failed some and have won some. But mostly, failure clouds us and we lose hope. Just like Paul in Romans 7:15, we feel the same.

“For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate”

I want to share what I have learned in Pastor Nate’s blog post. It somehow answered the question: how to live a victorious christian life. It was such a timely post for me since I was going through my own set of struggles and really wanted to be victorious over sin. I want to be like Paul.

Philippians 3:12-14.

12 Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. 13 Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Just like Paul, I am not writing this post to say that I have achieved perfection or already sinless. I see the possibility of perfection only upon death, when we are in heaven. The word “perfection” actually talks about maturity. As we go through this life, are we constantly growing in our relationship with God? Are we spiritually maturing in our view of God? Are we become more like Jesus? Are we sinning less? These are questions which might help evaluate your journey to “perfection.”

But even though, we realize, total spiritual maturity is still a long way to go we need to press on. We shouldn’t be quitting. It is a daily decision to want to mature. A daily desire to grasp (lay hold) of what God wants from you. He wants you to be victorious. He wants you to live that life of abundance in Him alone.

Realizing that you haven’t achieved total spiritual maturity yet, but you need to claim it and press on for it, you need to do this one thing – forgetting what lies behind. You cannot run with you focusing on what you left behind or what you are running away from. You are running away from it for a reason, right? Why do you need to go back at it again? Why do you want to focus on what you’ve run away from the first place? I like what Pastor Nate wrote about Religiosity and Relationship.

Both involve moving away from evil, but with different focuses. Religiosity is focused on what’s behind. How many sins can I say I don’t do any more and I can feel good about that? The difficulty is that the “hunger” of the flesh is mighty and the more you focus on what you know you should not have, the greater the desire of the flesh will be to have it. Like a dog that is focused on its tail, even when it finally catches it, it has accomplished nothing!

man movin forward while looking backThat is why you don’t need to look back even while you’re walking forward. What you left behind is nothing compared to what is before you – Jesus Christ. We should reach forward to what is ahead. We should focus and pursue Jesus rather than the goal of being victorious over sin. In reality, victory over sin is impossible without Jesus in the equation. When we pursue Christ, we will feel less the thirst of our flesh to sin.

But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. – Galatians 5:16

When we fill our mind with Christ and grow in our knowledge of Him, our minds become captivated that the thought of sin no longer have any space to grow inside. The love of Jesus. Knowing God. The knowledge about Jesus. The desire for Jesus is what makes us victorious. When we fully understand who Jesus is and how much He loves us, it propels us to hate and not want sin. Sin will never give us lasting pleasure, only Jesus can give us contentment and peace. That is why I also believe the prize is not victory over sin. Victory over sin comes with the prize. The prize is actually Jesus. And at the end of our Christian marathon, we should also aim for another prize and that is Jesus saying to us “well done, good and faithful servant.”

May we be encouraged to press on! I know it’s not easy. But we need to push ourselves to the limit because what is ahead, is just so good that it should motivate us to endure. I want to know Jesus more. May we together journey in knowing Jesus more. God loves you and me.

I would love to hear from you, please leave a comment below on how to live a victorious christian life.

How does Satan Attack?

There is a battle on-going even though the war has already been won. Sometimes we don’t even realize there is a battle – a struggle that we go through; it eludes us because it is under the spiritual realm.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.  (Ephesians 6:12)

But take heart! The war has been won because of what Jesus has done on the cross!

Since there is a battle, we need to know how to engage it, how to plan for it and best of all, how to win it. Our enemy is Satan, but take note that when I refer to Satan I’m referring to his kingdom. When I say Satan, it includes all the demons working under him.

Let’s answer the question: how does Satan attack us? When we hear this question do we immediately imagine a person being possessed by a demon just like in the movie “The Exorcist”? Or do we see it as Satan capable of attacking us physically through a sickness? Or can it also be someone that Satan has deceived to attack us physically or emotionally?

These maybe some of the things that we might think of, but in essence Satan does not aim to attack us. Because when Satan attacks His aim is to attack God and not us. It is not about us but about God.  He wants to distort who God is. He doesn’t want God to be gloried and he will do everything he can to deceive us not to trust who God really is.

The Fall of Man.

Even, Serpent in the Middle and then Adam

Let’s look at the fall of man in Genesis 3. How did the serpent approach Adam and Eve.

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” (Genesis 3:1)

The serpent did not approach Even by just telling her to eat of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden. He first questioned what God really said to confuse Eve. And so the woman, who responded wrongly, added words to what God really said.

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” (Genesis 3:2-3)

Then the serpent cunningly tries to show that God might actually be trying to keep something good from them.

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:4-5)

We know how this went. The Serpent was succeed in his plan. More so that Adam responded after the fall by blaming his wonderful God.

The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” (Genesis 3:12)

Let those words echo in your ears: “The woman YOU put here with me.” Adam is now blaming God for giving him a helper. Adam was deceived to think that God is not a good God because He allowed this to happen. He wasn’t owning up to his decision but rather attack the image of God. Man fell and so, sin started.

Satan is very crafty. But we have to realize that the attack is not going against us but will always be against God. Even if Satan wants to attack us physically it is because he wants to hurt God knowing that He loves us so much and what Father would want his child to get hurt?

Counter it.

This reality should help us know how to be sensitive to his attack and counter it. He will always try to distort the wonderful character of God that’s why we need to be ready with truth of who God is. We must not forget what He did and we need to know what His word is saying about him. When Satan tries to make us worry by telling us lies that God doesn’t care for every need you have, you need to be ready to counter him with scriptures – your only weapon of attack. That’s why it’s really important to memorize verses and dig deep in his word. Because just like the Psalmist in Psalm 42.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God.

When things get tough in our Christian Marathon we need to be able to put our faith in the right place. We need to be able to say I will not believe in those lies. I know my God and He is good! His word stays true and no matter the situation, I will trust who He is.

I leave you with this question: how well do you know God through His word that you are able to withstand the attacks of the evil?

How Bad Do You Want It?

What do you want? How Bad Do You Want It? This is such a board question that can be answered in so many different ways. Each individual has their own desire within their heart and that desire may have been a result of a situation they experienced before, a dream they always had, or something they saw in someone that they want to attain as well. Bottom line, everyone has desires or wants.

James 4:1-3 talks about a desire that can lead to your ruin. It talks about a battle within you. You want it. You dream of it. You desire it so much that you result to manipulation, you argue for it, or even quarrel with someone to get it.

Think about it. Is it the latest iPhone that you want so badly that you are willing to argue your case with your parents for them to buy it? Maybe, it’s a promotion that you’ve been working for or aiming for that your willing to fight for it even to the point of sabotaging a colleague’s reputation so there’s less competition in the workplace. Or arguing your case to God, in prayer, that what you desire is something you deserve. Isn’t that what James 4:2 is telling us?

..And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it.

No, the reason you are not getting what you want is because while asking you have a wrong motive – James 4:3. The desire that you have is fueled by passion and love for the worldly things in life, which God considers adulterous. Because in your relationship with Him, you are not to desire anything else that may take your eyes away from Him. You are to desire Him alone. His spirit within you tells you, “I am already enough for you.” Why look for anything or anyone else?  Why be unfaithful?

…the Holy Spirit, whom God has placed within us, jealously longs for us to be faithful? (James 4:5)

There is a promise that we can hold on to. Despite the raging battle inside of us because of all the worldly desires we have – we can overcome it through His grace. But you need to realize first that you cannot control it on your own. You need to humble yourself before God that He may give you the strength that you need to overcome it.

He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires. As the scripture say, “God sets himself against the proud but he shows favour to the humble.” (James 4:6)

What are we now to do?

First, you need to humble yourself before God

Ask for strength, through his grace, that you may be able to overcome your worldly desires.

Second, resist the temptation

When you’ve realize that you need God’s help then that’s the time you need to do your part of resisting the devil’s temptation to lure you into that worldly pleasure. And the bible makes it clear in James 4:7, “he (Satan) will flee from you”.

And third, draw near to God

This is not a one-time thing. You need to constantly do this to be able to ensure you remain faithful to Him and only have Him as the apple of your eye. You need to regularly spend time with Him. And as you draw near to Him, there is another promise again – He will also draw close to you. He will show you that, indeed, what you really just need is him to complete and satisfy you.

Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you… (James 4:8)

As an ending question: again, how bad do you want it?

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