Summary: So many Christians experience phyrric victories that masquerade for the spiritual victories that are won through the Lord Jesus. Phyrric victories are those which are won through efforts of our flesh that may win a few battles but end up costing us so muc
Are You Experiencing Victory or Something Less? (I Cor 15:57,58)
But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, be steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord knowing your labor is not in vain in the Lord. (I Cor 15:57,58)
Song - Faith is the victory... O glorious victory that overcomes the world.
So many Christians experience phyrric victories that masquerade for the spiritual victories that are won through the Lord Jesus. Phyrric victories are those which are won through efforts of our flesh that may win a few battles but end up costing us so much that we eventually lose the greater wars. The following are some of the ways that we can transform our fleshly experiences into Christ centered victories that are enabled by the power of the word, the Spirit and the fellowship of godly believers.
1. Exchange the volatility of our emotions with the stability that is found in worship of God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. When the resurrected Christ appeared to the disciples the Bible teaches, "When the disciples saw Him they worshipped Him but some doubted. Jesus said, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations..." (Matt 28:17-20) True worship ascribes the entirety of our heart, soul, strength and mind’s love to the Lord for all that is He without reservations. That total allegiance gives one stability in the midst of the volativity of life’s emotional ups and downs.
2. Exchange our temporary human victories with the eternal sense of victory that is given through confident trust, reliance and adherence to the Lord Jesus who fights and wins every battle. Too many people are waging battles that are just not worth fighting. They are arguing about trivial things that are extensions of their egos. James says it best, "What is the source of quarrels and conflicts among you? Is it not your own desires that wage war in your members. You lust and do not have so you fight and quarrel." (James 4:1-4) Ask God to give you the discretionary equanimity of spirit, soul and body so you do not get stressed out over the things in life that really do not matter from an eternal perspective.
3. Exchange vindicativeness with a forgiving, merciful and compassionate heart. So many of us want things to be fair so we tend to react when we are cut off in traffic or slighted in any way. Instead of over-reacting or over-dramatically responding to irritations let us allow the Lord to help us remember to be as forgiving, merciful and slow to lose our cool as God is with us. (Eph. 4:28-32) Forgiving one another just as God in Christ has forgiven you.
4. Exchange any victim mentality with the fact you are more than a conqueror through Him who loves you. Neither tribulation, persecutions, famine or nakedness will be able to separate you from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus. (Rom 8:31-35) God is for you so you are never powerless, forsaken or victimized by circumstances.
5. Exchange any vitriolic critical and caustic attitudes with an upbeat, confident and courage disposition. God told Joshua as he was to take the Israelities into the promise land. "Be strong and courageous and act. Do not fear or be dismayed for the Lord God goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work of the house of God is finished." (Josh 1:9) There is so much sarcasm, cynicism, and disbelief today in our world that it is endemic. Replace this with the confident expectation that God will do what HE says He will do and act on that conviction of anticipation. HEb 11:1 - Faith is assurance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.
6. Exchange vapid or insipid-indifferent attitudes toward spiritual matters with a willingness to engage in spiritual warfare. Paul wrote, "We battle not against flesh and blood but against spiritual forces in the heavenly realms." We are in a battle and therefore we will either emerge as victors or the vanquished. Choose which end you want to experience.
7. Exchange vulgarity with purity. So much of the reason that people are not living victorious Christian lives is that they are not pure in heart. Jesus said, "Blessed are the pure in heart for they will see God." (Matt 5:6-8) Without a clear conscience, a holiness of mind, heart and emotions we are inhibited in our fellowship with God and limited in our ability to experience His empowering, enabling and enlightenment.
8. Exchange venomous language with edifying speech. By criticizing, complaining and speaking negatively about others we find ourselves polluted by our own judgmental attitudes. If we want to experience good we need to put away our critical speech pattern, gossipping and criticizing and put on edifying patterns of as Paul wrote about, "Speaking the truth in loving (Practicing, holding it forth) let us grow up in all aspects into Him who is the Head, even Christ." (Eph. 4:15)