Flesh & Spirit- The Battle

Here I am- again- about to share a struggle that I’m facing and have been facing every single day since….well..since forever.  “Lord” I asked, “why oh why can’t you put something on my heart to blog about that is NOT in regards to a struggle I’m having?? Why can’t I write about something so uplifting and ummm….something that’s not about (*clears throat*) ME?”

His response … “If you’re not going to be real on this blog, then you’re defeating the purpose of this blog if you omit your journey with me and the things I’m brining you through.”

Hmmm…I suppose I did (by the leading of the Holy Spirit) name this blog ‘Real Life With Jesus’…which means here I am again- no sugar coating here, just being real. Ok..so here goes!

I opened my eyes this morning to my 2 year old daughter at my bedside “mommy- dowtairs? (downstairs).”…I turned my eyes towards the clock. 6:05. Really? It took some coaxing but eventually, I got her to crawl into bed beside me. 5 minutes or maybe 10, I thought to myself…then I’ll get up and go downstairs with her. But not even 10 seconds had gone by and our 1 year old started to cry from her crib in the other room. 

So I got up…

But I didn’t get out of bed with a smile on my face. I didn’t get out of bed ‘feeling’ happy. Immediately, I called out to Jesus. “PLEASE help me get this mood to pass!” I know all too well where the day is headed when I give in to this feeling of ‘attitude’ and ‘bad mood’ if you will. I know that it’s going to come spewing out of my mouth just causing more problems. So then I quickly say good morning to Jesus but as I’m thanking Him for this day, I’m thinking in the back of my mind the fact that I haven’t gotten to sleep in for like 100 years. (Ok, obviously not 100 years but at least 4.) So then I give my head a shake and tell myself “Tara, snap out of this mood before you say something that you’ll regret.” So then I try to refocus and ignore all of the negative thoughts rushing through my mind. I’m then replaying the disagreement that I had with a loved one just the other day, I’m thinking about the laundry that needs to be washed and folded and the dishes that need to be done and the rushing around that I’ll have to do to get ready for church–that’s right folks, my lovely mood happened the morning I woke up to go to church- the day that I should be excited to go and be with my church family and lift the name of Jesus. There I was Mrs Grumpy McGrumperson.

20 minutes later, after feeding both the girls their breakfast and cleaning up  yogurt that had some how made it’s way on every surface in the kitchen, I hear my hubby and our 4 year old son wake up. I’m still in a ‘grump’ so I start to repeat over an over in my head “Jesus, help me pleeeaaaassse! Dave is getting up and if I don’t snap out of this I’m likely to start an argument over this mood I’m in.”

Then all of a sudden more negative thoughts start to bombard my mind! What is GOING ON HERE? Now I’m annoyed with my thoughts AND grumpy. Not only am I annoyed and grumpy, I begin to feel guilty and condemned. Thoughts like “what kind of wife are you? Loving on your husband and serving him one minute and the next, you’re as selfish as selfish can be- moody and short with him. You’ll never be able to submit to your husband constantly if you can’t even submit to Jesus consistently.” (let me just pause to tell you that even since I’ve began my journey of becoming a submissive wife, things come against me all of the time! Especially thoughts just like the one I just described. The Lord reminds me frequently that when we’re doing something FOR Him, oppositions will come against us- But push through, don’t stop. What ever you do, don’t give up. Our godly marriages are a threat to the kingdom of God so opposition will rise up- but God is greater the he that is in the world so don’t back down) Ok that was tad off topic , but felt led to share.

So I continue this rant to Jesus…It sounded something like this … “Jesus what is going on here? Why can’t I shake this? Why can’t I stop focusing on all this negative STUFF. Why can’t  I stop being so selfish, thinking only about me and how I’m feeling? I just can’t stop thinking about what so and so said to me. And I can’t get over how bad I feel for overreacting the other day and I can’t this and I can’t that and on and on and oooonnnnnnn.”

Finally, I was quiet enough to hear God say ( and I”m not kidding) “You talk too much.” Those are the words that popped into my head. YOU TALK TOO MUCH. You talk too much and you don’t listen enough. Ouch. (I say ouch a lot ..because sometimes the truth just hurts.) And the truth is just that. I DO talk too much. I talk too much about me (my feelings, my hurts, my needs, my desires, my reason for this, my reason for that, my opinions, my thoughts) I do this with friends and I do this with my husband and with just about anyone that will listen…and I do this with God. It’s ok to talk! It’s good to communicate! But it’s not good to talk so much that you forget or don’t care to listen and understand where others are coming from. I know God wants me to pour my heart out to Him and share every little detail, good and bad with Him….BUT am I stopping to hear what He has to say? Or am I just listing my requests to Him and pouring out my heart to Him and then walking away before I can even hear what He has to say??? Ouch again.

So I quieted my mouth and my mind long enough to allow Him to speak to me about my ‘bad mood’…and this is what He gave me…

Cast your cares upon Me and I will sustain you; I will never let the righteous be shaken (Psalm 55:22). Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.(Philippians 4:8)

Now, I’m not saying this was easy or that my mood just switched the moment I thought on these scriptures but as the day goes on and as I meditate upon that which God gave me, I know that I can do all things through Him who gives me strength…and the more I cast my cares upon Him and think on things that are excellent, admirable and praise worthy, what ever is right, and pure and lovely, I know that I’m choosing the way of the Spirit and telling my flesh to step back.

This is a daily battle that every Christian faces…choosing to walk in the spirit and not in the flesh. I know I’m not the only one facing this issue. For me, the battle right now is in learning to ‘get over myself’ …for you it might be something else. But one thing I know for sure is that I plan on winning this battle and not only surviving it but OVERCOMING it. In Christ we are ALL OVERCOMERS!! I won’t back down, I won’t let my bad moods have the last say, I won’t let the enemy have the last say, I won’t let my feelings or my moods or my mess up’s define who I am in Christ. No way.

I hope and pray that what ever battle you’re going through when it comes to flesh and Spirit, that you realize God is greater then anything that we’re facing and battling..and I pray that even when you feel like the battle is too much- remember that you ARE an overcomer!

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Romans 8:37Image

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