Dear Salvation Army, 3 Healthy Habits For Soldiers

To equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ…” Ephesians 4:12-13

crestWe as an Army are in the Kingdom building business.
Our employer…no, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has given us this great commission.
We are more than a church…
we are a movement.
We are more than just another social services agency…
we are a part of the body of Christ committed to reflect His image in the corners of the world that we are called to.

This is a tall order.
We are to be like Christ
…and yet in our own strength we cannot accomplish this calling in our lives.

In our own strength we will fail.
(Trust me, I’ve fallen flat on my face far too many times to count.)
In our own strength we will fall horribly short.
So, with that being said, what sort of attributes do we need in order to make this “reflection of Christ” visible?
What do we need to do in order to be the best soldiers for God?

Today I would like to offer just three healthy habits for Soldiers.
This is not an exhaustive list, nor are these the only healthy habits to commit to, but these will perhaps get us all on the right track if we aren’t already there.

3 Healthy Habits For Soldiers: 

pray1) Prayer Never Ends!
Make prayer more than a scheduled time in your day.
I’m not saying don’t have scheduled time, but don’t put prayer in some sort of manageable box that you keep those conversations with the Most High in.  Don’t leave the conversation.  Yes, begin it in the morning, but don’t ever end it.  Take the conversations with God with you into every moment of your day.  Obviously to be seen talking out loud to yourself might be frowned upon by some who might think you might be losing it…but instead, in your thought patterns, keep your conversations with God going.  There shouldn’t be an “on/off” switch with heart talks with God.  He has promised to never leave us or forsake us and He is always there, so why not begin to include Him in your every day routines both big and small!  Eventually, the inclusion of God in your thoughts and conversations will change the way that you see the world and others around you.

2) Feast Only On That Which Edifies! breaking-bread_650x366 (1)
You have most likely heard the term “garbage in, garbage out”.  This term implies that if you put garbage (rubbish/trash) into your life, gargage (rubbish, trash) will be what you produce in the world as well.  If you wish to become healthier in life, you wouldn’t feast on high fatty foods from fast food chains every day now would you?   No, instead you would begin a rigorous attempt to eat right and to exercise.  The same can be said of the heart and soul.  These attributes of the body requires maintenance and they require the right kind of nourishment.  If we claim to be a disciple of Christ but we constantly binge on garbage with only a sprinkling of His Word, then we are seriously starving our spiritual life!  It should be no surprise when we find ourselves spiritually dry and lacking fortitude, we haven’t been working out and staying in shape by feasting on the right kinds of things!

Listen, if we wish to walk in faith with Christ BUT we haven’t surrendered our old ways of life, then something is terribly wrong.  The old must pass away in order for this rich, new life to thrive and grow!  We just cannot hold onto both.

From the Word: 
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
(2 Corinthians 5:17)

from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. 11Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water?” (James 3:11)

Make sure that you are feeding your souls with the right kinds of things!  Don’t starve your spirit with junk food and things that will only stunt the potential growth that God has in store for you!

step3) Step Up And Out!  
When we take prayer seriously and we include God in our daily routines things will change.
When we begin to feast on the edifying fruit of God, things will change…
Stepping up and out will not always be the most comfortable thing you ever do, but it does become a true test of who God has called you to be!  It not only benefits other people, but it also improves our skills and abilities in sharing our faith!

The real the tipping point in it all is this:
Do. Not. Keep. It. To. Yourself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Step up.
Help others along!
In the words of General William Booth – “Do something!

It is like that old Sunday School song “This Little Light of mine”:
One of the verses goes – “Hide it under a bushel, NO I’m gonna let it shine!!”
When we include God in our daily conversations and we are feasting on the things that edify this new creation within us, we can’t help but proclaim His goodness and love!

soldierWill there be discouraging days?  Of course.
Will we ALWAYS feel like proclaiming, and ALWAYS be in the mood to share?  No, not always.
Will we be happy all the time?  No way!

When we invite God’s presence to travel along with us both with the important and the less important things in our lives, we begin to see how much He loves other people around us.  This love will propel us forward into service.
We are saved to save!
We are saved to serve!

This is NOT an army of mediocre washouts and wishy-washy salvationists!
NO!  We are here to be Christ’s hands and feet!
We are here to proclaim His name in both the good days and the bad days!
We are here to serve the lost, the poor, the widow, the orphan.

If you are reading this today, chances are you long to improve your soldiership as well!
If you are reading this today, you, like me, believe God is calling us to a deeper service and a deeper understanding of the sin-sick world we serve.
We all have room for improvement.  We all have room to grow.  We can all reflect more of Christ and less of ourselves…but only through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit!

Do you long to be a healthier Solider for Christ?

Perhaps these three healthy habits can help you on your way to becoming the Soldier Christ has called you to be!

-Something more for this Army to ponder today!
To God be the glory!

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