Echoes of an empty room

A few weeks ago I was sitting in my room listening to a small sermon on Instagram live. I happen to be doing laundry and decided to get up to go check on my clothes. As I began walking through the house, all of a sudden the speaker on Instagram can be heard reverberating throughout the foyer. I paused for a second and thought to myself, how weird was that, but I shrugged it off and continued on to the laundry room. Moments later, God put the answer in my spirit. How can you hear God when your life is constantly cluttered with garbage? Now, don’t think that my room is cluttered with garbage, but I do have the normal furniture pieces, a bed, dresser, tv stand, night stands and a lamp, but the foyer simply has a small table located near the front door.

The Bible says, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2

I began pondering on this and it dawned on me, this is so true and applicable for many of us as believers. Our lives are cluttered with garbage and weights that we aren’t willing to lay aside, from the television shows that we watch to the people in our lives. A few years ago I stopped watching Scandal, Love & Hip Hop and a bunch of other shows. Of course I had my own convictions but let’s be honest, a lot of what these shows drop in our spirits isn’t conducive to a healthy spiritual life or relationship with Christ. I one day desire to have a husband but I think it’s okay for another woman to sleep with someone else’s, I want to be an example unto other young women but I can support another degrading herself, how does that work?

Music also has a huge affect on our spirits, our emotions and our life styles. There have been studies that prove this. “Those who listen to heavy metal and rap have higher rates of delinquent activity, such as drug and alcohol use, poor school grades, arrest, sexual activity, and behavior problems than those who prefer other types. They are also more likely to be depressed, think suicidal thoughts, inflict self-harm, and to have dysfunctional families,” (Kent, 2006). Now I won’t act holier than thou and act as if I don’t still like ratchet songs from time to time, but I’m very aware of the words being disseminated and the message being sent. However, many of us don’t have that discernment. Now, one artist I DO NOT, by any means, like is the artist Future. I know over the past couple of years he has blown up among audiences around the country. He even went on tour with Drake this past year. People always ask, “why don’t you like him?” Well here’s my honest answer, I think his music perpetrates and promotes nothing but drugs, sex and foolery. The same guy who says that God is blessin’ all the trap n*ggas. Seriously sir, how dare you associate God’s name and character with such activities? Moreover, Future’s music is filled with the exact same spirits he’s battling; ones I’m not willing to freely let into my life.

As it says in the bible verse above, these are weights that so easily ensnare us, they come in unexpectedly and undetected. You may not be attuned to the practices of the enemy but the Word tells us, “The thief comes o steal, kill and destroy….” John 10:10 The thief is the enemy, the devil. His intentions are to come in and disrupt your life through every open portal and it just so happens, these are some of the most accessible avenues.

Proverbs 4: 25-27 says, “Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.”

Be aware of these shows and music that has access to your life. You may not think it affects you but seeds are being planted and if watered, they can manifest into you life. That’s why we are to ponder or think carefully about the path of our feet.

Family, friends and relationships can carry the most baggage. Y’all know the baggage I’m talking about too. The friend that always has baby daddy issues, the family members that want to tell you how to live your life but can’t never keep a job or has a new boyfriend or girlfriend every other month, and the relationships where he wants all the wife qualifications but he still has yet to mention marriage.

Ecclesiastes 3:1, 6

To everything there is a season,

A time for every purpose under heaven

A time to seek, and a time to lose;

a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

People come with different baggage for various reasons but it’s not our job to judge them or try to fix it. However, we must steer clear of it so as to not let it seep into the delicate parts of our lives that we’re still working on. God is the ultimate fixer! I do encourage you that as believers it is our duty to pray for these people and somehow separate from the baggage. It doesn’t make you somehow better than them but it’s about the journey God has set before you and everyone doesn’t need to come along.

Last sin I want to address that ensnares us is masturbation and porn. I personally believe the two go hand in hand, which is why I have coupled the two together. Sis, if this is you, STOP immediately. I’ve been there, done that. The doors and portals that you are opening to the enemy are astronomical. These demons and satanic spirits not only affect you physically, but emotionally and spiritually as well. 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 says, “For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;” Masturbation is not only defiling God’s temple but you’re also sinning against yourself. “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body,” according to 1 Corinthians 6:18. I used to think doing it here and there, in which I would also watch porn, was okay. But little did I know how the enemy was using that to his advantage. I began dealing with a spirit I hadn’t exposed myself to or so I thought. I reached out to my spiritual mentor and we began talking and I was immediately convicted about where this spirit had entered. It was conceived through my time of masturbation and I’d let it in with open arms. Honestly, it was overwhelming to say the least at first because I couldn’t believe how I’d been so blind to the schemes of the enemy and how I’d let myself fall victim to the lies.

The devil is the father of lies, he’s always on the prowl searching for whom he may devour and Word tells us this very thing. However, we serve a mighty, just, loving, and forgiving God. 1 John 1:9 says. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

You must acknowledge your sin and repent. Don’t say you want to repent and God delivers you, then you go right back to your same filth. Don’t do it sis. Desperately seek God for deliverance from this and NEVER go back. Jesus died on the cross for us to be forgiven. There is no condemnation in Christ.

I never write about things that haven’t personally affected me, so I want you to know that I’m praying for you. Don’t ever let the enemy make you feel guilty or shameful for your sin. We’ve all sinned and come short of the glory of God but by His stripes we are healed!

I pray this blog post helps someone to be delivered in some way or another from the weights and sins that so easily ensnare us. Be encouraged and know that Christ loves you!

Devotional 03/12/2017

“so that we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that you endure, which is manifest evidence of the righteous judgment of God, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you also suffer;”
‭‭II Thessalonians‬ ‭1:4-5‬ ‭NKJV

The current suffering and tribulation of this time is not to be counted as a lost, or even a time to cower from the Word of God. You see, your patience and faith may be tried and tested but assuredly the perseverance and endurance built during this time shall be stronger than it was before. The Bible tells us that we go from glory to glory, faith to faith. Paul says that they boasted to other churches about endurance of the believers at Thessalonica. The Thessalonians kept their faith through the testing of trials. They were even said to be of the poorest Christian converts during that time.

Yes, suffering hurts! Yes, trials seem unbearable at times! However, it’s about the glory that God will receive! Enduring until the end, justly, we shall see the righteous right hand of God! He counts your sufferings as righteous and He repays you for it. Whether you see it in this life, the next or both, you shall see it. I’m a firm believer that Christ is an unbelievably loving and gracious Lord. You never have to worry about what it looks like because He promised to never leave us nor forsake us!

Remember that the teacher is sometimes quiet during the test. Not that they don’t care we may be struggling, but it’s a test for a reason. Keep your eyes stayed on Jesus and I promise He will soon reveal His glory through your suffering!