Together with the Apostle Paul, we no longer live for ourselves. The Lord has redeemed us for a holy purpose and therefore we struggle daily against spiritual lethargy, lest we return to our old ways.
Our preoccupation with the sinful self takes many forms. The words “selfish”, “self-centered”, “self-absorbed”, “self-indulgent”, and “self-righteous” each describe a different way of living out the same rebellious attitude toward God. We all battle these demons since it is difficult to completely discard the dead carcasses of our former beings. In some unfortunate cases Satan might even gain a significant foothold in our hearts and rekindle our spirits of disobedience.
This is why the filtering process must never stop. We must take up the cross of Christ “daily” and guard against anything that threatens our ability to sense God’s leading. Two areas of concentration will help us stay this course: our passion for God and understanding His plan for us. As a growing dynamic, these two pursuits bring us to a place of spiritual poverty and put us in line for kingdom blessings.