The Cycles (Part Six)
“Nine” Part Series
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
If you choose to fight a behavior battle, you have two alternatives: either a negative or positive behavior. Either one of the resulting messages will produce self-effort. If you fail and give up you are shamed, and if you try hard and succeed you are self-righteous.
In Philippians 3:1 Paul states, “Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord! It is no trouble for me to write the same things to you again, and it is a safeguard for you” (NIV). Paul tells the church in Philippi to “Rejoice in the Lord” one more time. Paul explains that this reminder is a “safeguard” for them. He was telling them this because they were forgetting who they were.
Paul continues to exhort them with this reality:
Watch out for those dogs, those men who do evil, those mutilators of the flesh. For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh—though I myself have reasons for such confidence (Philippians 3:2-4 NIV).
Paul reminded them that those who were promoting an unnecessary circumcision were essentially teaching that what Jesus did was not quite enough. They were promoting self-effort, performance, and the Law.
Paul exhorted the Philippians to rejoice in the Lord because He knew that the religious leaders were urging them to rejoice in becoming great religious performers. But Paul said, “No. Boast in Jesus.” In other words, Paul was urging them to rejoice in the right thing!
Some have placed their sense of value and worth in their family members or friends. While these people make great friends, sadly they will often fail us and let us down. Some boast in their cars, but your car will stop running and rust away. Some boast in their house, others in personal possessions. Some have their life in their bank account. The musical group Caedman’s Call wrote a song titled “This World” that includes the following words: “This world has everything, but nothing that I need.” The things of this world are all corruptible.
Ephesians 6:10 says, “Finally be strong in the Lord, and in the strength of His might” (NASB). The Greek word for “be strong” actually means, “Allow yourself to be strengthened.” We were created to find our strength in Jesus. It is perfectly okay with Jesus if you are weak. You find strength in Him alone, meaning you will never find strength in anything or anyone else.
You were called to place all of your desires, confidence, and boasting in the unshakeable and un-created God. He always offers eternal things worth boasting in!
You are now at a turning point in your life. Since your value and worth are no longer up for grabs, you need to learn a new cycle and depart from the old Give-Up/Try-Hard cycle way of living. You can now place your confidence in your new source.
I hope that you can find rest and life in the midst of being His son or daughter. It’s okay if you disagree with me; you can always go back to your old answers and solutions. But, I hope you don’t do that.
Father, would you pour out wisdom and revelation into those that are reading this book. Father, may they see You and hear Your message towards them. In Jesus’ name!
INTRODUCING THE REST CYCLE
In the Rest cycle, the outside sources are still involved in our lives. And the same shaming messages are on the rampage. Unfortunately, as you begin to move into the Rest cycle the outside sources keep delivering shaming messages that do not go away. These shaming messages still travel with sharp aim, and they first attempt to lodge and bevel their way into the shame grid of your mind.
But here is the difference. You will notice in the following illustration that the Rest cycle begins in the middle of the old cycles, where there is no performance on your part. It begins after your last behavior and before your next behavior. It begins in the mind, the place where you believe and agree with things.
Look for The Cycles (Part Seven) post tomorrow.