To be free from excess or extravagance

A few months ago, my husband was given a 60-day notice letter from his employer. Rumors had been flying around for months about an upcoming strike and possible lay-offs. We walked on egg shells for several months waiting for the outcome. Then one morning, shortly after my husband had arrived to work, he called me. He shared with me that they had given him the 60-day letter. There was peace and disappointment within my husband’s voice.

I did my best to reassure him all is in God’s hands. I continue to do so now nearly 3-months later. However, without revealing too many personal items, let me say that His faith is much different than mine. He believes in God, he is not saved as I am. There is conflicting thoughts and approaches that have developed within this circumstance that we now find ourselves. We both believe it to be a most welcome opportunity to understand God, to hear Him more clearly, and to know Him better.  The difference comes with patience and waiting upon the Lord to work on the “what’s next details.”

A friend of mine recently forwarded an article to me written by J. Lee Grady. The article:

Getting “drunk in the Holy Spirit” has been a popular concept in some churches. But is it biblical?

You can read more about this at:

The article itself was speaking about certain individual charismatic circles and the strange teachings of John Crowder-a confessed “new mystic” who compares the infilling of the Holy Spirit to smoking marijuana.

The article was good insight to this topic. However, the paragraph that hit home for me was the following:

“The soberness here is not primarily a reference to abstaining from alcohol (although it’s worth mentioning that believers who drink will find it more difficult to obey these commands). To be sober can be defined “to show self-control,” “to be sane or rational,” or “to be free from excess or extravagance.” A sober Christian knows the heights of God’s inexpressible joy, but he is never ruled by emotions, passions, lust or any other category of temptation that has the power to dull the spiritual senses.” 

This hit the mark in my heart condition [circumstances] today because of the new avenue I am walking with God due to His timeless teachings. The main point that was driven deeper into my heart, was “to be free from excess and extravagance”. I confess, before the Lord and all who may read this, that I am addicted to money and have misplaced and misdirected my faithfulness toward having it. It is so easy and convenient to place faith in having money and the lie that “all is well” when you have it.  It is much harder to grasp the concept that God alone knows my every need and will provide for those according to His time, plan, and purpose for me.

LiftEyesTopIn this time of the ‘shaky economy’ and the lay-off my husband, I am thankful for the revelation that God is my provider and my keeper. He is my true bank account. I look around me and my oh my, He has blessed me with ever so much. He has not let me out of His sight for one moment, while I have blinded myself with my desires for luxury and extravagant necessities [my fleshly desires for more clothes, shoes, food, money, etc.]. My vision has also been obstructed by needless worry and fear. A battle that goes on day and night within me.

Although the article was speaking more about the charismatic, I found God’s message of encouragement within that one phrase, “to be free from excess and extravagance”. I often find that to be the case. One word or phrase weaves its way within my heart and mind until the meaning is revealed and His Word is understood.

In every circumstance within my life, I can choose to respond in two ways: I can worship or I can whine!

God gave His Son upon a cross for me…I choose to worship.