“Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” ~Matthew 4:10
I thought a bit of Celtic music would be appropriate for today since it is St. Patrick’s Day. I typically do not do any particular celebrating, usually wear something green. “St Patrick’s Day is a global celebration of Irish culture on or around March 17. It particularly remembers St Patrick, one of Ireland’s patron saints, who ministered Christianity in Ireland during the fifth century.” It’s not just about wearing green or drinking green beer, it’s also a celebration of St. Patrick, calling attention to his contributions to Christianity. 🍀🙏🏻⛪️🍀
The text for today the writer talks about a Cherokee Elder teaching children about a fight that is happening inside of him. The fascinating truth about his story is that it could just as easily be taught in a Sunday school class as well. The Cherokee Elder tells the children, two wolves are fighting inside him, one is evil and angry and the other is good. One of the children asks, “Who wins?” The Elder replies, “The one you feed!” The good wolf was joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, kindness, truth, compassion, generosity and faith. While the evil wolf was anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, false pride, superiority and ego.
These character traits ring true for living for yourself/devil or living for God. The Bible tells us of many of these traits in:
1 Corinthians 13:4-8, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”
“Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold. Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need. Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
“The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.”
I purposely included a lot of scripture references to make a point that God has provided detailed lists of behaviors to embrace and behaviors to resist. God knows that we are sinful and that this life has temptations and He wanted to provide guidelines and support for each one of us. God loves us so much that the only way to provide redemption for us, His son, His one and only son to die for ALL sin, once and for all.
“The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”
This week we have been talking about and learning of “Power” and the Wilderness, the power in this lesson for me has been the “POWER” of God. Specifically, the POWER-ful love that God has for His children. May your day be filled with love and laughter, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day.
Breath Prayer: Jesus, I choose you!
~Blessings and Peace~