We are tempted on all sides. Our flesh wants to be comfortable and satisfied. So how do we stay on the right path when our desires want us to deviate?
The answer is quite simple. “If you love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15 WEB). It’s just a question of love. In this verse, we do not find a despotic order, but an obvious statement. If we love Jesus, of course, we will want to keep his commandments.
Because when we love someone, we want to please them. My husband showed it last Sunday. He took a shower, dressed comfortably in his jeans and said he was ready to go to church. I looked at him, and I asked him if he was really going to church dressed that way. I love when my husband wears beautiful black pants with a button shirt to go to church, and he knows it. He asked me if he could go to church like that, and I answered: “It depends on who you want to please”. If he wants to please God, he could even go to church in his pajamas, God looks at his heart. But since he also wants to please me, his wife, he decided to change his clothes.
It’s the same with our relationship with God. Our flesh has desires that are often contrary to those of the Spirit (Galatians 5:17). We are tempted by momentary pleasures or depressing thoughts. Instead of fighting against these desires, we can have victory simply by reminding ourselves who is the subject of our affection. Do we want to please God above all else? If we truly love our God with all our heart, we will be ready to resist temptations, even to suffer if necessary.
How can we keep our flame strong and more powerful than any other sparks that might spring up around our hearts? The same way we can maintain our love for our husband or wife.
1: Remember God showed you His love first (John 14:16)
God sent His only begotten Son to save us even before we asked Him for forgiveness! He pursued us in His love, and we accepted His invitation. He saved us from death and torments, and we agreed to put our lives in His hands. What a beautiful story; our salvation! Just thinking about it, we fall back in love! “We love him, because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19 WEB).
2: Remember all these acts of love on a daily basis
Our love story does not end on the day of our salvation. This heroic act that Jesus did to save us was just His extravagant way of declaring His love to us. But since that day, He continues to shower us with blessings. Every day, if we pay attention, we will see His little “kisses” that He keeps sending us. A verse just at the right time, a ray of sunshine to warm us up, an unexpected discount, a good news, and the list goes on. His mercies are new every morning! (Lamentations 3:22-23).
3: Compare yourself to those who do not have this blessing
As humans, we tend to always complain about our situation, we envy those who have more than us. But when we compare ourselves to those who have less than us, we realize then that we are rich. I have already heard someone say : “Don’t complain about your spouse, there are single women who would like to have him”. If you find that your relationship with God is difficult sometimes, remember that those who live without God will never taste the peace you have, the joy that goes beyond circumstances. Without God there is no solution to deep loneliness, as for you, you are never alone. Go read Psalms 73 if you need to remember your privileges.
4: Remember our commitment, our confession
In marriage, sometimes love seems to disappear. At least, the emotions seem to vanish. But our commitment to each other was not based on emotions. Marriage is a decision, a solemn commitment. And our relationship with God, at times, may look like this. Our emotions towards God can vary. Sometimes we must remember that our salvation was also a decision on our part. We have chosen our camp and since God is faithful to us, we must also be. “He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.” (Luke 16:10 KJV).
5: Take quality time with Him
Finally, if you feel the need to add a sparkle to your relationship with God, do as you would in a marriage. Spend time together! Put yourself at your best (repenting of all sins to be clean, washed in the blood of Jesus). Then shut down your cell phone and your television. Put beautiful music of praise and begin to compliment your God. You will see, His love will swiftly invade you, and nothing in the world will be as precious as your relationship with Him.