There is a battle that rages on the inside of each and every one of us.
It is the battle of the Spirit vs. the flesh.
Now most of us get to the point where we learn to allow the Spirit of Jesus to rule in our lives and hearts, but what we really struggle with is whether or not we will trust the Spirit of Jesus to work in the lives of others.
It is one thing to trust the workings of God in our own lives. We kind of feel in control of that.
It is another thing to trust the workings of God in the lives of others. We have no control over that.
So this morning I just want to encourage you to stop for a moment and ask yourself this question.
Do I really trust Jesus on the inside of others?
Do I even trust Him to work on me?
Jesus On The Inside Of You
Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.
When a person “accepts Jesus Christ as their personal savior”, they invite Jesus to come and live on the inside of them. This invitation causes a change to happen in their heart and lives and it is what is called being “born again”.
Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”
When you invited Jesus to come and live on the inside of you, you became a new creature. You became “Jesus possessed”.
Now the big difference between being possessed by Jesus and being demon-possessed is that Jesus will never violate your free will although He is living on the inside of you.
A demon will always try to take total control of you.
With Jesus, it is a partnership.
With a demon, it is a dictatorship.
However, that does not mean that Jesus will not guide, influence, and even expose those areas of your life that need to be fixed.
He goes through your heart and starts to clean things up.
The degree to which He does and the speed at which He does it is based on your level of cooperation.
However, you need to remember some things.
Jesus is God. By being God, He is all-knowing and all-powerful.
He absolutely knows everything about you.
He knows how you tick.
He knows everything it will take to guide you into becoming more like Him.
It is because He is both all-knowing and all-powerful that we can place our faith in His ability to change us from the inside out.
Jesus On The Inside Of Others
Trusting Jesus on the inside of others is more problematic for most of us.
We struggle enough with ourselves and whether or not Jesus will really make us like him.
To trust that He will make others like Him is harder because we trust our willingness to surrender to Him but we don’t always trust others to surrender to Him.
However, the fact of the matter is that He knows them just as intimately as He knows us.
He knows how to work with them better than they know how to work with themselves.
He definitely knows how to work with them better than we know how to work with them.
It took me almost 20 years to learn to start trusting Jesus to work on the inside of others.
I was faced with my kids having hearts that were angry towards me. I had to trust that Jesus would work on the inside of them. I could not fix the problem. It truly was between them and God.
I did my part to be humble and loving towards them and I never closed the doors of communication but in the end, it was something they had to work out between them and Jesus.
As a parent that is very hard.
We have to have a healthy boundary between training our children up in the admonition of the Lord and when to let it be the Lord that does the admonishing.
The Result Of Trusting Jesus On The Inside.
As a pastor and leader in the church, I have seen the results of when people try to control people and make them holy and when a leader trusts Jesus to work in others.
I know many pastors that are burnt out because they are doing all the work of the ministry because they do not trust that God will work through anyone besides themselves.
I know many Christians who think it is their duty to bring correction to others because they only trust the way God works in them.
This produces a cookie-cutter spirituality that does not allow for the unique creativity of God working in all of us.
So this morning I want to encourage you.
Are you feeling as if you are not measuring up?
Surrender and just let Jesus work on the inside of you at his speed and pace and with His priorities. Don’t set the agenda. Let Him decide what needs to be worked on.
Are you finding yourself wanting to get people to do things the way you think it should be done?
Trust Jesus to work on the inside of your family and friends and even church leaders. Jesus knows best, not you.
Give it to Him and trust Him to do awesome things through people because He is doing it His way.