Thursday, November 21, 2019

Victories To Be Shared

Ben here... I'm a grateful believer celebrating recovery from drugs, alcohol, anger, rage, entitlement, and pornography.

On Tuesday night I taught the lesson on GIVE. If you recall the V in our acrostic is victories shared. 

"Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the merciful Father, the God from whom all help comes! 4 He helps us in all our troubles, so that we are able to help others who have all kinds of troubles, using the same help that we ourselves have received from God." 1 Corinthians 1:3-5 GNT

Here is one of my VICTORIES shared. It's an adaptation from my daily inventory journal from October. I hope it encourages you to know that you are not alone in this journey and that there can be VICTORY even in moments that seem lost.

Last night as I sat in my hotel room I grabbed my phone intentionally in a second to find, look at and then mast-rbate to explicit images on Instagram. I didn't even type something into the search bar before three things hit me.. . 
  • How it's been a long time since I felt and acted on a sex-al impulse like this. 
  • I thought I'm only acting on this impulse right now because I'm exhausted, I'm hungry, and restless. (h.e.a.r.t)
  • The consequences of my sin. The lingering effects it always has on me days later. 
I'm in a hotel room because I'm at a conference focused on mobilizing others and the last thing I wanted to do was allow the devil a foothold on an incredible week Jesus has in store. So, I turned and prayed inviting Him to remove my desire and keep me from stumbling. VICTORY

Now I believe I was well aware of my heart for a few different reasons. I am not always and more so than not when an impulse of my flesh comes so violently I fail...

But not tonight because I was thoroughly prayed up. I had spent intentional time before leaving Atlanta to head to Phoenix and then spent time intermittently through the day praying. Then my dad and I spent a few minutes praying over our week when we met up in Phoenix. 

But not tonight because the past two weeks I've been awake to the things of God being in His word, seeing His work in other's lives in Georgia and the world, and sharing/recounting how He has moved in mighty ways, and asking for myself and the people I've been on mission with for a heart posture of awareness of Him daily. 

But not tonight lastly because as I've been daily inventorying I have been able to reflect often on the good things. 

"Finally, believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things [center your mind on them, and implant them in your heart]." Philippians 4:8 AMP

Then comes my devo this morning on relapse prevention from Mark 14, the night of Jesus' arrest. This is a commentary from David Guzik 

"Watch and pray, let you enter into temptation. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak" Mark 14:38 
Jesus knew Peter would fail; yet He encouraged him to victory knowing that the resources are found in watching and praying. If Peter woke up (both physically and spiritually), and drew close in dependence on God, he could have kept from denying Jesus at the critical hour.

Jesus found victory at the cross by succeeding in the struggle in Gethsemane. Peter – just like us – failed in later temptation because he failed to watch and pray. The spiritual battle is often won or lost before the crisis comes.

So, the point of this mouthful is to share with you the VICTORY and to elaborate how I got there. I share with you because it is not what the devil would like to see. I'm expecting a spiritual battle ahead. The proverb I have on a note card right now is Prv 24:27 "Put your outdoor work in order and get your fields ready; after that build your house" reminding me to continue to work on the foundation (the outdoor work and fields) of my recovery so that the house (the going and being used to share with others) will stand firm and steadfast. And am expecting push back from the ruler of this broken world cause he would love to see our house not stand in Jesus. But alas "me and my house we will serve the Lord". 

Thank you for letting me share,

Ben Ledford
Assimilation Asst. Coach
Believer's Church Celebrate Recovery

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