Over the past two weeks, I’ve been challenged to try and hear God’s voice clearer. A really good friend of mine is fasting and trying to do the same and I was inspired. If you’re a Christian you know there are peaks and valleys in our walks and I was in the proverbial valley.
During this time, I had encountered numerous circumstances and scriptures on the topic of worldliness (of, relating to, or devoted to the temporal world not the spiritual one). I know at times I can get caught up (i.e. jamming to the new secular song by Usher, watching my favorite Desperate Housewives episode on Hulu or entertaining a conversation that is less than edifying) but as a seasoned Christian these things should have no affect on me, right?
Wrong. We have to limit the amount of worldliness we allow into our lives and this should be an ongoing process. As a believer, I am given freedom! But not everything is beneficial for me (1 Corinthians 10:23). As a rule of thumb, I’ve chosen to follow what Shannon Ethridge has recommended in her book, Every Woman’s Battle, * and examine what I allow into my mind – through magazines, books, movies, television, radio and the Internet. I suggest you do, too, and ask yourself the following questions:
• Does this glamorize ideas or situations that oppose my Christian values?
• Is it uplifting to my spirit, and does it make me grateful for what God has given me, or does it make me depressed or dissatisfied?
• Does this cause me to think about things that build my character, or does it tear it down?
Don’t allow things to enter your mind that can distract you from being devoted to Christ and the things He has called you to do. Paul warned the Corinthians about this possibility when he wrote:
“I am jealous for you with a godly jealousy. I promised you to one husband, to Christ, so that I might present you as a pure virgin to him. But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, you minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:2-3)
Paul wasn’t worried that the Corinthians weren’t thinking about God 24/7! He was worried that the things they were spending time thinking about would lead them in the opposite direction from God!
Christianity.com stated today that “We must fight worldliness because it dulls our affections for Christ and distracts our attention from Christ. Worldliness is so serious because Christ is so glorious.” Am I telling you to give up everything at once? No, of course not, but I am asking that you decrease the amount of the “world” you let in and watch how the blessings begin to flow! Instead of spending four hours on Facebook, spend only two. Use the time you would have been mindlessly playing Mafia Wars to read the Word of God. So many people are asking why they haven’t heard from Him! I have a question for them and for you: Are you really listening? Decrease the flow of “world” into your life and see how quickly He answers! His voice will become clearer to you! Spend more time with Him. How can we hear His voice if we aren’t listening? Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27).
As Christ followers, I believe we go through seasons of revelation. God will only give us what we can handle (1 Corinthians 10:13) and when we are shown to be faithful with little we will, in turn, be given more because of what we did with the little we had. (Luke 16:10). If you want to know His will for your life it’s simple: just ask. But make sure that you aren’t too distracted to hear His answer. This, my brother, my sister, is one of the secrets to being in His perfect will.
*excerpt taken from “Every Women’s Battle: Discovering God’s Plan for Sexual and Emotional Fulfillment” by Shannon Ethridge