Living The Life Of An Overcomer [Your Calling as a Christian]

In today’s world we’re told to focus on overcoming external problems. But as a Christian, living the life of an overcomer is an internal focus.

For a long time, I believed that living the life of an overcomer had to do with conquering circumstances, winning an external battle. I thought that living a life of an overcomer meant making things happen despite many challenges. Perhaps this is part of it, but there is more. I’ve come to realize that our internal battles are greater predictors of the outcome and quality of our day to day lives than our circumstances.

I have come to realize that the Lord was calling us to overcome the greater battles of what lie within us.

God is calling us to overcome our thinking and heart meditations; ideas about religion that draw us away from the truth by distracting us with rituals and acts. Early in the New Testament, Jesus quickly points to the importance of concerning ourselves with the condition of our hearts rather than external factors. In our time the focus on what we eat seems trivial, but at that time in history “purity” also had to do with what one ate.

What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them. But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these things defile a man. – Matthew 15:11, 18

How radical was this?

Jesus said this at time when religious people were concerned with doing what appeared to be right. Back then people were so focused on following procedures. This applies to us today as well. We live in a social media world, our bible lets us know that it’s not about being seen by people, but being known by God. That is the power of the truth; it’s time-less.

The heart can’t be seen, but only God knows what is in it.

We are told to focus on overcoming that which can’t be seen. The thoughts and intentions of the heart. It’s that bitterness, judgment, anger, hatred, unbelief, negativity, greed, jealousy, immorality, anxiety, chronic frustration, …The list can go on and on. When we don’t focus on these things that are contrary to the Spirit of God, they begin taking root within us and begin to feel like they are part of who we are. These are the things we have housed for so long that they feel like part of our DNA. This may be normal in today’s world, but it’s not our portion.

We are called to live the life of an overcomer. It’s a calling that only radical Christians can live.

We have to reject what the world says is okay and good for us. We have to refuse to be normal. Even though no one can see it and applaud our efforts, we have to engage in an inner battle to be right with the Lord.

You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. – James 4:4

Everyday we have to overcome our inner self. We can’t do it on our own. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. We have to keep calling upon Him who made us conquerors. Confessing our shortcomings and repenting. The Kingdom of heaven is near. We don’t want to be turned away at the gate while we recite the acts we did in the name of Jesus. The outcome of such a choice was made plain to us.

The Word tells us, many are called but few are chosen. Christ must be Lord of our hearts, sitting on the throne of our hearts. It was revealed to those who choose to believe when Jesus was asked by the disciples which commandment was the greatest. They wanted to know, if we fail to do it all, what must be definitely get right.

This is the anchor for living the life of an overcomer:

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.” – Matthew 22:37-40

May God help each of us to have a pure heart; so we can begin living the life of an overcomer.

An inspirational piece from Priscilla Shumba.

The Question is: Are you living the life of an overcomer?

A Hand To Hold In The Darkness

When the storms of life rage and the darkness grows dense, that is no time to panic or fear. No matter how dark things seem, God can see what you can’t see, and He promised to be with you and guide you safely to shore if you’ll trust Him.

Uncle David the psalmist knew the truth that God is Light and the darkness can’t hide anything from His view.

Even the darkness will not be dark for you; the night will shine like the day, for Darkness is as Light to you. (Psalm 139:12) NIV

Most of us have experienced a “midnight hour” in our lives – a time when things seemed their darkest and bleakest. That’s probably how the disciples felt that night on the Sea of Galilee. It was night and they were struggling to no avail. The wind was blowing against them, and they were no doubt growing discouraged and weary. Yet it wasn’t dark to the Master. He was watching over them with loving care. He is watching over us, too, and He promised to help us in our time of need.

For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help the. (Isaiah 41:13) KJV

God is always present with us, and we have His promise that He will help us. But when tests and trials come, the rowing always gets tougher when we allow our view of God to become masked by the storm. If we’re not careful in the midst of a test or trial, we can lose our perspective of reality and take a wrong turn.

Like my pastor will say, every situation in life is in time and season. He also cautions people never to make a life- changing decision in the middle of a crisis. God’s time is always the best and it’s better to seek God and regain their composure and perspective.

I’ve seen people make life- changing decisions that they later regretted because they lost their perspective in a storm of life. Their ship was pitching and rolling on the waves of adversity, and they lost sight of the Master. They began to take matters into their own hands, and they suffered consequences that God never intended for them to suffer.

Storms have the ability to warp our perspective if we’re not careful. Even some of the great men of the Bible temporarily lost their focus in times of trouble. For example, Chief Moses as he dealt with a rebellious people; a heart sick Uncle David as he grieved for a son who had tried to kill him; a despondent Chief Elijah as he ran from jezebel; and an angered Chief Jonah as God forgave a penitent nation. At times, duress and personal struggle caused the attitudes of these men to become tainted by their troubles. They wanted to give up and quit. They wanted to take matters into their own hands and try to change God’s plan. But God wanted them to cling to Him and let Him guide them through the storms and struggles.

It’s so easy to lose your perspective of reality when things seem dark, but if you’ll hold tightly to the Saviour’s hand, light will come. The day will dawn, and your “midnight hour” will be a thing of the past.

Psalm 30:5 says, “… Weeping may endure for a night, But Joy comes on the morning.”

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