As Christians, you and I are like athletes. Every day we’re training for competition. Every day we’re engaging in battle with the enemy. To meet this serious challenge we need divine strength and power. Like a body-builder, we need energy to reach and sustain our optimal level of performance. And we need fuel for our spiritual fires. There is such a thing. The Bible calls it honey.
Victory Awaits You
The day you stand with nothing in your hand, relying not on your own abilities or resources, the Spirit of the Lord will come upon you mightily. Things that once seemed impossible will become easy for you. Doubts and fears will flee. And in the carcasses of your defeated lions, you will find the honey of joy for yourself and others.
Listen, my friend, God is able to turn an empty, defeated and powerless life into a marvelous testimony of His grace. Through trials and conflict, He will remove the worthless weapons from your hands until all you have to offer Him is your trust in His Word. Only then will God empower you that no flesh should glory in His presence.
We have ignored this truth. The church goes forward with so many things in-hand: programs, propaganda, human enthusiasm, prestige, learning, but the Spirit of the Lord does not rest mightily on these things, and most believers never discover God’s PowerBar because they depend upon personal resources and not upon the Spirit of God.
Self-Sufficiency Always Brings Defeat
Even Samson wasn’t always victorious, however. Out of human weakness, he revealed the secret to his strength to a deceitful woman named Delilah, who delivered him into the hands of the Philistines.
As they gathered outside Samson’s tent, he awoke from his sleep and said, “I will go out as at other times and shake myself free” (Judges 16:20). But the Lord had departed from him and Samson was truly powerless. The Philistines seized him and gouged out his eyes (v 21).
Samson failed when he tried to be self-sufficient. Let us not follow his example. You and I cannot “shake ourselves free”. We must be empty of ourselves and full of Him.
The lion is dead. Jesus won the victory. And yet, we still hear satan’s roar from time to time. He is still able to afflict you and hurt you. In fact, he will destroy you if you let him.
Honey is your only hope. Your only resource. Honey will take you beyond your natural strength and abilities. It will give you the energy to reach and sustain your optimal level of performance as a Christian. It will fuel your fire for God.
The question is how? From a practical standpoint how do you lay down your weapons and come empty-handed before God? If faith unleashes the work of the Holy Spirit, how do you develop that faith? Let me suggest three ways.
1. Cultivate a personal fellowship with Jesus Christ.
The object of your faith is not a creed, nor a sacrament, nor a slogan, but the person of Jesus Christ. To eat the honey of Christ’s victory over satan, you must cultivate His friendship and lean upon it above all else. With glorious abandon, you must surrender yourself to God’s will. This must become your priority for each day. Don’t go to bed at night until you have sought His holy presence.
As you spend time reading the Word and praying, let His purposes and will enter in and possess your mind. Let His promises distill in your heart. Talk to Him in secret and allow Him to talk to you. Consult the Lord about all your affairs, and then take His counsel and apply it to your daily activities.
Sounds simple, doesn’t it? And yet, so many Christians fail in this area. They neglect the one thing that matters most.
2. Make holiness your supreme desire.
Some Christians are so wrapped up in collecting and claiming God’s promises that they forget all about God’s highest calling for their lives—sanctification—or the process of being remade into the image of Jesus.
Your desire for a clean mind and a pure heart must reign supremely over your desire for personal comfort and material blessings. A casual or vague yearning to be holy will not suffice. But rather, with passion and ruthlessness, you must remove every obstacle and every bad habit that is keeping you from becoming more like Christ.
If you lack a burning, consuming thirst for His holiness, ask God for it. And keep on asking Him until a fire rages in your heart. God will not fail to bring it to you.
3. Focus on the campaign, not on the battle.
A few lost battles don’t mean defeat. You’re going to blow it sometimes. But God will use your failures to create in you a greater desire for His presence and a deeper dependency on Him. And He will use your mistakes to bring you to the place in which you have nothing in your hands.
So when you face a difficult trial or temptation, place your trust in the victory Jesus won for you, and not in your own individual performance. Focus on Jesus and not on yourself. Stop worrying about your image, and how others might perceive your ability to handle your problems. People who are “performance trained” by the ways of the world seldom surrender to the ways of God.
Let’s face it, God uses conflict and defeat to bring about your surrender. When you can no longer handle the pressure on your own, then—and only then—you become a candidate for the Spirit of God to come upon you with might and power.
The Bottom Line
God wants you to learn about the strength and grace that is available to you as you engage in spiritual conflict.
While under the influence of the Holy Spirit, that grace gives you exceptional power beyond your natural abilities and experience. It gives you strength from the honey in the hands of Jesus.
And, amazingly, to the degree in which you fellowship with Jesus and eat the honey of His life, you will become more like Him (2 Corinthians 3:18).
So, what are you waiting for? Unwrap that PowerBar, and dig in!