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Weekly Sharpening

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May 18, 2022

Coasting vs. Spiritual Strengthening

Are you lacking passion or drive in your life?

Are you just going through the motions?

Are you present physically but absent mentally?

Do the day-to-day activities of your life feel more like a “have to” versus a “get to?”

Would you describe your life as mediocre?  Is it defined by mediocrity in relationships, work, ministry and worship?

Maybe there aren’t any big red flags signaling a breakdown or burnout, but you know something isn’t right.  Maybe you are the only person who feels it.  Your life looks OK from the outside, but you know something is missing.

If you answered yes to any of those questions above, maybe you are coasting.  Another sure sign of coasting is a dependence on your own strength, abilities, giftings and will, rather than a dependence on God.

This is what David was doing in 1 Samuel 29-30.  He was living in the land of the Philistines for 16 months, hiding from Saul who was trying to murder him.  He’s not doing anything to draw nearer to God.  He’s not seeking God.  He’s spiritually coasting and surviving on his own wits and abilities.

And it was working for a while.  But he had a big wakeup call when the Amalekites raided Ziklag and captured his wives and children. Not only his, but those of his companions.  He was incredibly distraught, and his own men, bitter in soul, threatened to kill him.

This was the catalyst David needed, and he went from coasting to strengthening.  1 Samuel 30:6 tells us that he “strengthened himself in the Lord.”  In doing so, David sought the Lord and became the hero his men needed in their time of sorrow and rebellion.

Do you need spiritual strengthening?

I need it every day.  I’ve spent too much of my life, even as a believer, coasting—relying more on the gifts and abilities the Lord has given me, than on the Lord and His Spirit in me.  I try to start every day strengthening myself in the Lord.  This happens as I pray and ask Him to lead me and guide me through the day.  I remind myself that this day has significant meaning because it’s the day that the Lord has made, and I have a role to play in it.   Strengthening happens as I read His Word and gain clarity on what a life in Christ looks like.  It happens as I engage my Christian brothers and sisters in spiritually edifying conversations that challenge, equip and inspire.

Look at your life.  Are you coasting or being strengthened in the Lord?

What does spiritual strengthening look like for you?

If you are coasting, consider this your wakeup call.

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