Bible Reference: Romans 8:7-9
Translation: The Passion Translation (TPT)
Bible Text: 7 In fact, the mind-set focused on the flesh fights God’s plan and refuses to submit to his direction,[f] because it cannot! 8 For no matter how hard they try, God finds no pleasure with those who are controlled by the flesh. 9 But when the Spirit of Christ empowers your life,[g] you are not dominated by the flesh but by the Spirit. And if you are not joined to the Spirit of the Anointed One, you are not of him.[h]
OBSERVATION: This Scripture is applicable all year long, but especially at Christmas we must ensure that our minds stay focused on the same Jesus that we worship and depend on all year long. Although we focus on celebrating His miraculous birth, He’s still the same Jesus that we glory in from birth, to the cross, to death, to His glorious resurrection, to His position of sitting on the right hand of the Father interceding on our behalf. He’s OUR KING friends! Let us shout with praise!
APPLICATION: It seems so unreal when we reflect back on Christmas and see how our minds revert back to the attraction of the world and to the attractions of: (a) Competing in gift giving – for we can’t let our friends or family member out-do us! or (b) Partying with friends – after all, it’s one of the most festive times of the year for work parties and family get-togethers! But what about the One whose birth brings about the occasion that we celebrate, what does He like? What would He appreciate from us? Have we even thought about the reason He came? I believe the Word of God is very clear in showing us that God sent His Son: born in the humility of a stable; to a poor, but pure young couple especially chosen by God; conceived miraculously; to show us that this was no ordinary child, but One ordained and in the very nature of God. Jesus was referred to as ‘Emmanuel’, meaning ‘God with us’, and throughout scripture we see time after time that our Savior is ever present with us, and looks out for us as His beloved children. Our Scripture today draws us to consider how focused we are on our loving Savior, and to what degree do we allow Him to dominate our lives. Let’s think about what happens when something dominates our minds, like work, or a girlfriend: We can’t sleep, for our minds are racing towards the parts of our job that needs more attention, or the things we might do to show more love to a girlfriend or boyfriend. Throughout the day, our minds are set on every action being geared towards improving that thing that is dominating our minds. So the BIG question then is: What is that thing, or person, that dominates our lives most? Our Scripture says that it reflects in our actions and our words. So, if less than 50% of our time, effort, priorities, words, etc. is spent on the things, and person of Jesus Christ, can you possibly presume that your life is dominated by Him? Think about it friends, who or what dominates you life?
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, time and experience has taught us that we will overflow with what’s inside of us. As we analyze who/what dominates us, may we make choices to fill ourselves with what we desire to see exude from us. Lord, my desire is that others will see so much of you in all aspects of my life that they will have a deep desire to know you personally. I pray that this devotional will cause many to think of what dominates them, and that they will seek Your help in making the necessary adjustments as You, and they, see fit. AMEN!