Sunday, November 22, 2015
UV 1592/10000 Watch Your Watch
Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.
Matthew 26 v 41
Jesus exhorts us to watch and pray. The context of this uni-verse is that Jesus is full of anguish to the point of death as His hour of trial and crucifixion is about to happen. He asks the disciples to keep vigil while He goes a little away to pray to the Father. On returning thrice, He finds the disciples sleeping. He admonishes them and each time asks them to “watch and pray.” We are expected to watch or be alert and vigilant lest the enemy who is a roaring lion finds us spiritually dormant or sleeping and devours us. We are to be watchful lest we fall into temptation. We are to be watchful for deliverance from evil. We are to be watchful to overcome the weaknesses of our human nature. We are to be watchful to keep the Word and to obey its statutes. To be watchful is to be spiritually awake and aware: we need to be aware of our own weaknesses and stay on guard lest these draw us into snares or temptations. Weakness is a part of our human nature but the Christ nature in us needs to be awakened. The power to overcome comes from God. If we are not watchful and pray, our spirits may be in sync with the Lord but our bodies and minds would be out of sync.
We are also to watch our own lives whether we are being faithful and fruitful. We are to be watchful about how we use time and opportunities. We are to be watchful about the things we see and hear and believe. We are to be spiritual watchmen for the kingdom of God in this world. We are to mount the prayer tower and look out for signs of any movement in the distant horizon. We are to report to the Lord in prayer the things we are burdened about in this world and to convey the concerns and burdens of the Lord to the world. We are to like the spies that Moses set out to study the land of Canaan. We are like the watchmen that Nehemiah appointed to watch as the walls of Jerusalem were being built. We do not know when or where the opposition or attack on us will come. We need to discipline our bodily appetites and watch out against lusts of the flesh, of the eye and pride of life. We need to watch our or be sensitive to the move and touch of the Lord in our lives.
Finally, we are to watch ourselves. The word “WATCH” itself is a watchword to caution and enable us to take a grip of ourselves and walk in the ways of the Lord. We need to look through the lens or the perspective and teachings of the Word at our Words- the words we use to express ourselves should contain the seed of the fruit of the spirit and reflect not hatred, bitterness, anger , sadness and frustration but it should contain love and reflect our joy, peace, patience. Our words need to be kind particularly to those who cannot retaliate owing to their position under us. We need to do acts of goodness with a sincere motive to help people and to bless them and not to show ourselves in good light or for publicity. We need to watch our attitudes: we are to check whether we are faithful and humble before the Lord. We need to watch our actions. Beyond actions and the visible, we are required to watch our thoughts and to take every thought captive to Christ. We need to watch our character whether we are conforming to His godly character. We need to watch our habits- the things we do on a regular basis. We are to examine our Words, Actions/Attitudes, Thoughts, Character and Habits through the templates of the Word of God. As a goldsmith or jeweller examines his gold or precious stones, we need to examine and evaluate as well as take steps to refine or correct our words, actions/attitudes, thoughts, character and habits. We should be careful to always think thoughts that are noble, positive, beautiful, praiseworthy and excellent. We can seek the help or enablement of the Holy Spirit as the most difficult and challenging aspect of life is managing ourselves or managing our words, attitudes, actions, thoughts, character and habits. We should pray asking for the Lord’s help to perfect us in all five aspects of our testimonial life. If we do not watch and pray for our WATCH- our own words and desires could ensnare us. Our negative words give the enemy of our souls a window of opportunity to enter and rule our lives and cause misery and defeat. The grace of God will enable us to overcome the power of dead habit in our lives.
Prateep V Philip