Cigarettes In Your Pocket
I often tell those that come to the School of Ministry that I am not interested if they get one blessing in the whole school. My objective is that their lives become infused with the power of God so that they may leave the school not just with a heavenly vision, but with the power to go out and defeat the work of the enemy.
Never let spiritual depth destroy your sense of purpose in your Christian life or you will know that you are on the wrong track. Let the Word of God have a place in your heart and when you approach the presence of the Lord, as Jehoshaphat, you will know exactly what to expect.
Only the Word of God can let you know exactly where you stand. The Bible says,
“The word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and the marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12).
It has been said, “Above all: to thine own self be true.” Those are beautiful, commendable words from the pen of a great writer. The only problem is that it is not always possible. When we have allowed sin and compromise to creep into our lives, we no longer are able to judge what is really truth.
Isaiah speaks of a tragic condition where the judgment of God is upon a man, but he never really comprehends what has happened to him:
Therefore he hath poured upon him the fury of his anger, and the strength of battle; and it hath set him on fire around about, yet he knew not; and it burned him, yet he laid it not to heart. (Isaiah 42:25)
Why didn’t he know the meaning of it? I have a doctor friend in one of the largest medical centers in America. He told me that patients will come into his office for help, desperate because they have only been given weeks to live. Some of them already have a gaping hole in their throat and an electronic voice box, yet both of their vest pockets will be bulging with packs of cigarettes. When he asks them if they are not aware that those cigarettes are the source of their suffering, they reply that they don’t think that the evidence of the link between cigarettes and cancer is really conclusive.
Hidden sins in our life are like cigarettes in the pocket. Sin brings forth death. It burns, but we have not yet laid it to heart. This is why we must stand upon the Word of God because it will reveal the real thoughts and intents of our hearts. It will restore tender flesh to the areas that have become calloused.
Make this declaration:
God will reveal the thoughts and intents of my heart. I will repent of my sin and He will replace the hardened areas of my heart with a heart that is tender towards God and His Word.