I don’t like eating healthy. Some days I try to anyway. If I have options on my side orders, I will usually get broccoli, one of the few vegetables I can manage to swallow. I can tolerate it. I don’t particularly like it. Since I know this I always try to eat the tiny green trees before the rest of my meal. Why? When I’m hungry the veggies go down a little easier. If I’m not hungry, I am less likely to eat the broccoli, which is what my body probably needs the most.
Recently I was thinking of my life as if I was standing inside a box. I was praying that God would invade my box and fill it with His presence. I felt as if He spoke to me and said, “Clear out the box.” Therein lies a truth. How many times do we say we want more of the Lord, but have our containers full of other stuff?
I love to drink water. I almost always have a cup close by. When I’m at home, I might occasionally desire to drink some apple juice or strawberry lemonade. I take my cup and throw the water down the drain so there is room in my cup for what I really want.
God won’t fill a container that is already full. What might be filling your container today? Our containers are often full of life concerns and worries, gossip, sinful desires, entertainment, frustrations, anger, hopelessness, heartache, wrong relationships, fear, insecurity, confusion and many other things.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT) Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
The first step to emptying your box is to step into the presence of Jesus in prayer. Mentally take a break from everything else around you and get alone with God. The scripture tells us THEN we will experience God’s peace. Instead of filling our mind up with everything else, make a conscious effort to seek the presence of Jesus instead.
At times emptying your box will sometimes require an extra step. I can’t tell you what that step will be. It might be throwing out some magazines, pulling away from friends, ending a bad relationship, stepping away from social media or other kinds of entertainment, seeking accountability with a sin issue. As the Lord reveals to you what step you should take, I strongly encourage you don’t wait. Take that step as quickly as possible.
We have the unfortunate ability to talk ourselves out of doing the things we need to do the most. More than once I have felt prompted to do something in prayer and then later on after I had left His presence I talked myself right out of it. Now I try to take immediate and unchangeable action so I don’t give the enemy time to deceive my oh so susceptible mind.
Galatians 5:13-14 (NLT) For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. 14 For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
I wanted to close with that scripture because it reminds me our number one priority should be loving people. Too often we spend too much time thinking, “Don’t put sinful stuff into the box!” I challenge you to approach today a little bit different. Prayerfully ask this instead: “How can I creatively serve someone in love today?” That question will allow the Holy Spirit to lead you into incredible opportunities to risk it all for Jesus!