There are undeniable unseen forces working in our world, forces that mold and shape the way we move and how we feel. These forces are so ingrained into our existence we very often take for granted that they influence us. We are oft times oblivious and do not consider their implication.
In the natural realm, one such example would be gravity. Gravity is a cruel reminder that we were not built to fly. In fact, we donâ€™t float real well either. Let yourself trip, make a wrong step on a roof or stumble over something and gravity reaches up from the earth and pulls you cruelly to the ground. The hand of gravity is always pulling on you.
In the realm of the mind and ideas, our culture is a gravity of sorts that works on the way we think. Americans as a whole think differently that the people of other countries. Even within our country there are regional opinion and thought patterns that vary from place to place. Many issues are defined by how we were raised and the collective mindset of our environment from many inputs as we grow. For many of us, our political and religious views spring more from environment than observation or study.
In the realm of the spirit, we are influenced on many levels. The spirit of our parents, our friends and family, along with those we are around through business and social settings. These all have a way of flavoring and seasoning our own spiritual DNA.
The principle is â€“ that which is clean is made unclean by the dirty. (See Haggai 2:11-13.) If you are sanctified, the sanctification does not automatically sanctify everything you touch. However, there are some influences that that can cause something to be unclean. In Scripture, the people were commanded to avoid that which was â€œuncleanâ€. They were sanctified by avoiding unclean influences. The same principle holds true for us today. Many things that we as Christians avoid revolve around this principle of sanctifying ourselves. The epistles teach us that light and darkness have no fellowship. You donâ€™t put a clean robe in dirty water.
I have had a person on my heart the past few days. I donâ€™t know him well, but I know some of his circumstances. I was deeply impressed that the struggle he is having stems from his not understanding the influence of small, unseen things. These small, unseen things are easily ignored or overlooked, but they ca season and even soil our lives if we are not vigilant.
The world is full of the negative pull. Music, with its captivating beat, drives negative themes and ways of thinking into our soul. Entertainment, with its bright flashes and loud noises, surrounds and soaks the psyche of our culture, drawing it into ever darker dimensions of depravity.
The only eternal positive pull is found in the fellowship and faith of the Body of Christ. From collective prayer, praise and the positive power of anointed preaching; our souls are cleansed, our minds are regenerated and our collective self takes on a positive charge. We can be changed and restored from a negative mindset to a faith-filled disposition in a few moments.
Jesus told us that we were the light of the world. He further explained we were the salt of the earth. The only sanctifying power in the world today is the Church. We as members of Christâ€™s Body must be vigilant. Our focus should not be on how not to get dirty, but how to be clean. It is not about not being negative, but how to be positive. The question is not, how we will not fail, but how we will overcome.
We overcome by recognizing what energizes us to a place of being a positive presence. We are light because of His Spirit that burns bright. We are love because we are loved by our Heavenly Father. We are salt, because we have been salted.
The cure for darkness is a good light.
The cure for this sin-filled world,
is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
The cure for the negative pull
is to be Holy Ghost full!
Scott Phillips is pastor of New Birth Pentecostal Church in Clinton Mississippi.