Yesterday we talked about the importance of taking every thought captive as we guard our mind against the schemes of the enemy. We talked about how it’s not enough to just avoid trash intake… you must replace the trash with the Word of God.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable,
whatever is right, whatever is pure,
whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute,
if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise,
dwell on these things.
We must be very careful what we allow our minds to dwell on… because our thoughts will become our actions. We must not allow our minds to think or imagine things that go against the Word of God. We are not to fantasize about men that are not our husbands, whether we are single or married.
Now before we go any further let me assure you that if you are married… honey go right on ahead and fantasize about you and your man! That is, as long as no one else is included in the fantasy. We must remember that marriage is about becoming one, about becoming “known” (we’ll get deeper into the becoming known later in the challenge), it is about intimacy with your spouse and only your spouse. If your fantasy begins to include and extra participant take that thought captive… it is a perversion of what is true, honorable, right, pure, and lovely.
Today we are beginning a focus on guarding our hearts… never forget that as a woman you must guard your mind and your heart… your mind follows your heart. When you emotionally connect with a man (fictional or real) then your mind begins to fantasize about him and then you desire to make your fantasy a reality. However a man, fantasizes in his mind and then seeks to emotionally connect so that he can make the fantasy a reality. Remember men give love to get sex and women give sex to get love.
Ladies, we must guard our hearts and we must teach our daughters and any other young women in our lives how to do this as well… victory is possible and is imperative.
“While the need to love and to feel loved is a universal cry of the heart, the problem lies in where we look for this love. If we are not getting the love we need or want from a man- whether or not we have a husband- we may go searching for it. Some look in bars and others in business offices. Some look on college campuses and some look in churches. Some women look to male friends while others look to fantasy. When love eludes them, some women seek to medicate the pain of loneliness or rejection. Some take solace in food; others in sexual relationships with any willing partner. Some turn to soap operas; others to shopping; and still others to self-gratification.
If you have tried any of these avenues for long, you have likely come to a dead end. Your pursuit has left you longing for something greater, something deeper, something more.”
~ Shannon Ethridge
Are you at that dead end? Honey I have seen it and it is not a pretty place to be… so if you are there or if you find yourself there one day… there is only one thing to do at a dead… turn around.
But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.
Therefore remember from where you have fallen,
and repent and do the deeds you did at first;
Repent, turn around, head back to your first love… to Christ.
I remember being a little girl and being so in love and in awe with my God. “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so…” I loved Him, I did. I didn’t know Him… but I loved Him.
Loving Christ but not knowing Him is kind of like that dream you have for that spouse, for that husband, you may not have met him yet but you love him… and even when you do marry him… you love him… but you still don’t really know him. Now the test comes when you have to choose to remember your “first love” for him as you get to know him… really know him.
As a little girl, I loved Him, I loved Jesus. Yet, I didn’t get to know Him. So my heart’s void was not filled with my love devotion to Him because I wasn’t seeking Him to fill that void… I forgot Him. I turned to other things to fill it. Things I could easily see and touch and feel… you know the things that didn’t require so much trust and work on my part.
I didn’t guard my heart and mind and save it for my Jesus… I gave it away… and my body followed.
I ended up at that dead end. However here’s the awesome and amazing thing about my Jesus, He can be found at the dead end. He doesn’t care how “lost” you are, He will get you turned around and headed in the right direction if you will just listen and fall into His arms. He will lift you up off your feet and carry you out of the muck of life better than any Richard Gere could his Debra Winger.
My First Love… He took me back. He didn’t care how dirty I was… He didn’t care about all the times I chose to fill His place in my life with cheap worthless things… He still loved me. He never stopped loving me.
If you are at that dead end… remember your First Love and turn around. When you fall back into His arms He will teach you how to guard your heart and to fill any void you have had with Him, the real lasting genuine deal. He will not reject you. He will not leave you lonely. He will not leave you empty. He beckons you to Him so that you can get to know Him… really know Him.
The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying,
“I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.
When you remember your First Love and return to Him and begin to fill your heart with His love, it is out of this love, His love for you, that you are now finally able to really love others… including your husband. If you are single it is out of this love, His love, that you are able to say “no” to anything that would perveror prevent love between you and your future husband.
If we are ever to have the ability to guard our hearts and our minds against the lies of the enemy and the seductions of this world… we must start here. We must start with remembering our Jesus and making peace with our God. “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so…”
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension,
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
So today let us just examine our hearts.
Today focus on the oh so great love that Jesus has for you. Remember Him. Take the time today to write a love letter to Him. Tell Him about what you remember about that day you first fell in love with Him. Sing Him a love song. Take the opportunity today to get alone with your Love and dance with Him… Close your eyes and praise Him and use your mind and your heart to imagine His arms around… His voice whispering His Words of unfailing love in Your ears. Trust me, you will know He is there