Post published by Tao Jones

Last night, my family was watching an episode of The Clone Wars animated series. I observed aloud that being a Jedi is basically a cheat code for life. Those folks can bend reality to their will. No fair! :) My older son and wife both immediately chimed in to remind me that the Jedi only earn their powers after intense training and many trials and sacrifices. Theirs is not an easy path.

This made me think of our journey as disciples. I am at the point in my travel where I have learned some things, and it does sometimes feel as if I have a "cheat code for life." It is truly well with my soul. I am blessed, and my life has indeed been restored from the absolute shambles I had made of it just a few years ago.

Just as an experienced Jedi moving objects with the Force, I may make it look easy to immediately shut down an unhelpful thought or to stare a sexual temptation in the face and simply say "No." But it was not always easy. It has taken intense effort over many years, and I have made many sacrifices along the way. What you see is the result of that work; and, do not forget, of God's work within me! He has declared that we are free, and so we are. But learning to walk in that freedom takes time.

I just wanted to encourage everyone with that mental picture. No matter where you are in your journey toward Christ-likeness (absolute Jedi mastery! :) ), you are on the path that will inevitably lead there, as long as you keep going and do not give up.

Paul's words to the Church at Philippi are ones I return to again and again. He didn't know anything about Jedi, but he definitely knew about suffering and loss in the pilgrim's progress. I've never found words that express it better than his.

Philippians 3:7-16
I once thought these things [self-righteousness] were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead!

I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.

Let all who are spiritually mature agree on these things. If you disagree on some point, I believe God will make it plain to you. But we must hold on to the progress we have already made.
Myfortress more_vert
Myfortress
I love when God reveals analogies to us from our everyday life that encourages us. Thanks.
CPilot more_vert
CPilot
What a great message and just at the time I need it! As my strength to resist lust has been building, I asked God to show me more obstructions I have put in the path to becoming closer to Him. WHAM! Not unlike the slap of a Ninja, He hit me in the fact with it a couple of days ago. The slap not only hurt my pride but my heart. However, I see I needed the guidance He sent albeit not nearly as gently as I would have liked. I have more work to do, I pray it doesn't take me decades more to get it done.
Tao Jones more_vert
Tao Jones
The disciple's journey is never-ending, I think. While the Way may be difficult, it is very, very good. We move along it from strength to strength and glory to glory. Onward! :)
Romans 6 23 more_vert
Romans 6 23
This was awesome. I know my first pist back may have been a bit of a lamentation. But looking back almost 3 years ago it was so hard to go 24 hrs without porn. Now a week is a breeze. Rather than beating myself up that I still struggle with this addiction my resolve has significantly strengthened. I hope everyone is seeing progress.
Romans 6 23 more_vert
Romans 6 23
One other thing. And Im sure some of you can relate. But God has already used my struggle to help a younger brother in Christ who was struggling with the same addiction we all struggle with. I think I was the first Christian he ever talked about it with. And that I also admitted the same problem. The devil loves to keep us in the dark and covered with shame. We need to bring it out into the light.