"SELF" - Our #1 Obstacle

 

"It is much easier to do battle with society and with others than to fight our own selfish nature."

 

 

 Our human nature is extremely self-centered and selfish.  Watch a small child respond when they

don't get their own way and you will get a glimpse of our selfish nature.  We were born to want our own way and unless we had parents that taught us and trained us to look outward and serve others, our natural instinct will be all about ME, ME, ME!  Gratifying our selfish desires can come without any thought to the consequences that are borne in the spirit or the affect it has on relationships.


The culture around us teaches us to focus on our appearance, feelings, and personal desires as the top priority.  The danger from this kind of thinking, however, becomes painfully apparent once inside a marriage relationship.  Almost every sinful action ever committed can be traced back to a selfish motive.  It is a trait we hate in other people but justify in ourselves.

The "lust of the flesh", the "lust of the eyes", and the "pride of life", the scriptures teach that every person must battle to some degree these kinds of selfish-gratifying lusts.  Lust of the flesh describes what it means to live life dominated by the senses. In the extreme, it would include “gluttonous in food , lustful and lax in morals, selfish in the use of possessions, and extravagant in the gratification of material desires. The lust of the eyes is the desire to possess what we see or to have those things which have visual appeal. The pride of life is thinking you are special because of who you are, what you have, what you know, or what you look like.

Our eyes, ears and mouths are gateways to our soul, so whatever we allow to come through these gateways, positive or negative, will determine our outcome in life.

Galatians 6:8 - "For he who sows to his flesh, will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life."

We overcome lusts and temptations by the power of the Holy Spirit, but we never become immune to human appetites, a desire for goods and wealth, or a longing for fame, power, or prestige.

Romans 8: 5-6 "For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, set their minds on the things of the Spirit.  For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace."

What does it look like to set our mind on the Spirit? The Bible says in Phillipians 4:8 - "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on these things.

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