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  • David

    January 8, 2021 at 6:37 am

    Two statements in today’s lesson jump out at me. First, if we find our selves stuck or our spiritual progress toward our goal of Christ Likeness seems arrested, “overindulging in religious practices” will not help us. While I believe that there is truth in that statement, I don’t think that means that we should abandon the fundamental spiritual practices or disciplines (prayer, scripture, and worship) that keep us in relationship and communication with God. I believe it means we should avoid self help approaches and over indulgence in church work, programs, and activities. You can’t dig your way out of a hole, you have to stop digging.

    Secondly, “we should not condemn ourselves when we are tripped up by obstacles. Shame and self-condemnation only increase and fortify our obstacles. Learning from our stumbles and taking time to allow God’s Spirit to lead us in overcoming them is the way forward.” This is extremely wise counsel. False shame and guilt are tools of Satan. There is no shame, guilt or condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).

    As far as the obstacles that we are going to be examining, I think the three the authors identify pretty much cover the waterfront. In my experience, an unforgiving (unbroken) heart and idolatry are the two most damaging obstacles to spiritual progress. I look forward to learning more about what helps us overcome these obstacles and move forward toward Christlikeness.