Sunday, February 21, 2010

Spiritual Vitamins. . .


For your physical health, there are a number of chemicals designated as vitamins. . .vital amines, substances which your body cannot create for itself, which must be present in your diet or your body will not function correctly. Without these essential chemicals, your health will falter and quite possibly you may die. We know that we are not only beings with physical bodies, but we also have the equivalent of spiritual bodies. In the physical we may look healthy and fit and strong, but if we were to have spiritual vision and look at ourselves in a spiritual mirror, what we would see might be very different indeed.


You may be strong and robust in the physical, but if you are neglecting your spiritual nourishment, you maybe incredibly weak and vulnerable spiritually.

1 Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

Who does the lion prey upon? Who does the lion attack? The lion is basically lazy and a coward at heart. The lion does not go after as prey, the leader of the herd. The strong one, the healthy one, for the able one offers the lion too much chance of being injured. The lion goes after the weak, the old, the sick, the injured. . .He goes after the one that separates himself from the herd. So therefore, if the lion as a symbol of, a metaphor for the devil goes after the weak and sick (speaking spiritually here), wouldn't it be wisdom for us to be aware of what keeps us spiritually strong and healthy. And then to do our best to make ourselves as unattractive as possible to the devil, in order that he might pass us by and choose another for his attacks.

Similar to our physical bodies, our spiritual bodies have certain vital trace chemicals, certain vital amines. . .spiritual vitamins that we cannot manufacture in of ourselves, but must partake of from without us, in order to maintain our spiritual health.

The first spiritual vital amine, is the vitamin 'C' complex. . . 'C' as in communication. Jesus was asked what the great commandment was:

Matthew 22:36-38 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? (37) Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. (38) This is the first and great commandment.

In our physical lives, we must by circumstance be separated from the ones we love. Our children must have homes of their own. Career decisions, and life choices often bring great distance from the ones we love, but in our spiritual life, there is no need for separation. God is only a breath away. If we love Him we must communicate with Him. To try and portray that you love someone, but given every opportunity, you never talk to them or acknowledge them is a contradiction. It is a paradox that reeks of hypocrisy. If you dearly love someone you will find time. . . you will make time to be in their presence. . .

Our communication with God has 3 vehicles of expression.

'C' Complex #1. God speaks to us. in His Word: Our devotions to reading His Word. God's Word, the Bible was divinely inspired by God, written down by a variety of some 40 different authors over some 17 centuries. It is God speaking to all of mankind, and importantly it is God speaking to each of us as individuals. The Word of God is powerful and unending in its depth of wisdom. The simplest of believers can benefit from reading the Word of God, and yet to spend a lifetime in loving study of it, we never reach the full depth of its message to us. We must be devoted to God's word. We must make it a part of our lives. It is not merely intellectual wisdom. There is power in the Word of God. In Ephesians chapter 6, the Word of God is described as our only offensive weapon. We are given a list of shields and armor to protect us, but we are also given a weapon in the Word of God.

If you dress yourself in armor and go walking down a dark ally, someone may come upon you with a baseball bat and a big knife. They will whack and whack upon your armor, until you are knocked off your feet and then they will find a gap in your armor and stick you with the knife. You will die, for you had no weapon to force them to keep their distance. When Jesus was tempted of the devil in Matthew chapter 4, Jesus drove the devil off by quoting Scripture. Jesus used no physical weapon, as an illustration to us of how Scripture can give us spiritual victory over the devil, Jesus quoted Scripture that He had memorized, to drive off the Spiritual attack. James 4:7 says to resist the devil and he will flee from you. It is never recorded that the devil fought a battle against anyone. The devil is a coward. If you show him that you have a weapon and that you know how to use your weapon, he will flee from you. If I find myself under spiritual attack, I immediately begin quoting Bible verses that I have memorized and in a short time the spiritual attack passes. . .That is the power of the word of God to deliver you from the attacks of the devil and the attacks of the world. There is power. . . great power in the Word of God.

Symptoms of deficiency: A lack of understanding of what God is and what makes God happy. A lack of spiritual root structure. Any new and seemingly fashionable spiritual wind that blows is likely to gather this person up, due to their lack of knowledge about what the doctrine of God actually is. An significant underestimation in the danger of disobedience of God. A general resistance to their faith in God changing their lives in any noticeable or significant way.
'C' complex #2 We speak to God, in our worship: Our worship of God is not about singing songs. It's not about music. It's not about choirs. It's not about standing in church on a Sunday morning and singing hymns. We can worship through all of these things, but these are only occasions of worship. Boiled down to its essence, worship is all about telling God how much you love Him. On many levels we must worship. We owe it to Him. He deserves it. We need it. Worship is an act of faith. Worship is an act of humility. Worship is cleansing. Worship is an act of love. Worship is an act of testimony. Worship is an act of healing and restoration. Worship is an act of fellowship. Worship clears the mind. Worship opens the heart. I worship as I walk in the wild places by myself. I worship as I drive in the car. I worship Him all day long.

Symptoms of deficiency: A general lack of joy. A lukewarm belief. Christianity without true and exuberant worship, is a gray and colorless religion. You don't read about the Pharisees being greatly devoted to worshiping the Lord. David danced with passion and fire before the Lord. He danced with everything he had. Pride filled Christians often lack worship, for sincere and unrestrained worship tears down pride.

'C' complex #3 We speak to God and God speaks to us, in our prayers: Praying to God is not about reciting memorized and formal words to God. Praying is speaking to God as you would your very closest friend. Praying is telling God your hopes, telling God your fears, telling God of your dreams and of your nightmares. Praying is asking God questions, not asking requests for Him to grant, but asking Him questions about what should you be working on in your spiritual walk. . .who should you be praying for. . .how to reach a family member. Praying is meditation on God's word. Prayer is repenting, the asking for forgiveness for things you've done. . . prayer must also include times of silence where you listen for God's responses to your questions. Spend time in prayer, silent. . . focused upon Him, waiting upon Him. . . time enjoying His presence without asking anything of Him. . .

Symptoms of deficiency: Lack of power. Lack of stamina. Lack of divine guidance. Lack of resilience in times of trouble. Feelings of fear, aloneness, hopelessness, depression. . .

Vitamin 'F' as in Fellowship: We must gather together with fellow believers. It is not an option. We need to surround ourselves with others who love the Lord and are trying to live for Him as we are. A stalk of wheat planted alone in the midst of a great field, must bear the full brunt of the wind all alone. It will likely be destroyed in the first storm. Whereas a field of wheat will sway and bow before the wind, but by having strength of numbers and close neighbors, the wheat will survive and withstand a far greater wind than any individual stalk would be able to stand against. We need other godly people in our lives. We need others who will pray for us and lift us up in times of trial. We need others who look to the Lord as their Savior and protector. We need others around us who greatly desire to live lives holy and acceptable to God.

Symptoms of deficiency: A general weakening of faith. A feeling of aloneness leading to bitterness and hardness of heart. A falling away from the Lord. . .
Vitamin 'P' complex as in as Pastor and Preaching: We need preaching in our lives. We likewise must have someone to spiritually feed us. We need someone to spiritually lead us. The word 'preacher' means 'shepherd'. A shepherd can see farther than the sheep. A shepherd can see the approach of a pack of wolves and lead the flock to safety. A shepherd can see a ravine ahead. . .a shepherd knows of places of good pasture and good water. . .A shepherd can see injuries and sickness in the sheep and tend to them. We need to hear the Word of God spoken by a man of God. We need to be under the spiritual authority of a man of God. This again is not optional. This is essential for our spiritual survival. The church does not need us. . .we must have to church in order to spiritually survive. Only a fool thinks that they can spiritually survive alone without being a part of a church body.

Symptoms of deficiency: The finding of strange doctrines arising from incorrect interpretation of the word of God. Excesses both in the spiritual and in the physical. Doctrines of man rather than God arise from not having spiritual oversight. A general lack of depth of understanding of the word of God arises from having no preaching in ones life.

False Vitamins. . .

Vitamin 'H', as in holiness,a false vitamin. Many partake of holiness as a spiritual supplement, thinking it to be a vital amine in their walk with God, but holiness cannot be taken from without. True Holiness is a manifestation that arises naturally from a correct relationship with God. Holiness that arises from the outside apart from God, is the same holiness that the Pharisee's had. Holiness that comes from man makes one bitter and resentful. Holiness applied from the outside is not humble, but filled with self-righteousness and anger. It is a burdensome yoke to be born, but holiness that comes from the inside is a desire to please a God whom you know intimately and love more than life itself. It is a gift offered to one you love, not a burden to be born in the darkness of your heart. Avoid the spiritual supplement false vitamin 'H'. . .
Vitamin 'G', as in God. God cannot be a supplement. He is the substance, the protein, the carbohydrates of our spiritual nutrition. He cannot be taken as a One-A-Day vitamin. People attempt to take Him as if a small tablet. Rather than permeating their entire life, they only allow Him a short time on Sunday mornings. They put on and take off their spiritualness along with their go to church clothing. . .This is a false vitamin and very destructive to spiritual health for it inoculates the person from having a deep and significant place for God in their life. From the tiny vitamin 'G' they fool themselves into believing themselves doing His will, when in reality they have put God in handcuffs and isolated Him from having the relationship that He wants and that they so greatly need. It would be better for them to have no relationship at all, than to fool themselves with this. . .

Maintain your spiritual health. Give even greater attention to your spiritual nutrition, than you do to your physical meals. Each week we spend hours upon hours feeding our physical bodies. Our spiritual bodies deserve at least that same amount of care and attention. . .

I love you my God. . .
Lead me to green pastures my Lord. . .

Dave