Christians are in a constant battle, and it is possible to both gain and lose ground. Let me elaborate…
As you can probably guess, the other trainees* and myself are in a financially obscure position. We either have no income, or an unpredictable one. As such, we are all being forced into a spiritual corner whereby we have to rely on the Lords provision more than is comfortable.
This has manifested in me personally by having my faith rest in him instead of my retirement account. I am a very “think of the future” kind of a guy, and naturally I am inclined to financial planning, saving, investing, and so on.
Over the past 3 months in California, I have watched my savings account dwindle more than I would like. Additionally, when viewed in the light of compound interest (that those funds would have eventually snowballed into), the long-term losses are much more profound than the actual numerical value…
As this has occurred, His Spirit has reminded me in various ways that it is his money and not mine, that Matt 6:33 really is true (seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be added…), and that if He wanted me to have much more money, he could easily do it.
I believe he has also reminded me of a principle in our spiritual walks. It is the principle of regression. Regression can be defined as “returning to a former state.” In our walks, we can LOSE GROUND that we had previously attained. In other words, if we have had a “faith victory” in an area (regarding money, worship, healing, or anything really) in our walk in the past, not to assume that we are impervious to becoming filled with doubt again.
I was reminded of this through a song that I believe I was prompted by Holy Spirit to purchase on my phone: Money Talks by AC/DC. Some of the lyrics to this song illustrate how this can happen:
“Come on, come on, kneel before the money,
Come on, come on, listen to the money talk,
Come on, come on, love me for the money,
Come on, come on, listen to the money talk!”
[end of lyrics]
By “listening” to circumstance or even well-intentioned but doubtful friends/family, we can slip back to a former state of spiritual immaturity.
It IS possible to fail in an area that we have had repeated success. This principle is all over scripture: Abraham, Moses, Elijah, David, Peter, the other disciples, etc… They all had significant failures in areas that they once were champions. We are no different: we really can lose ground in our openness to Him and his crucifying work in our lives.
Herein is our fight: to listen to the god of this world, “mammon”, or to listen to The Lord.
Stay in the Vine folks, stay in the Vine.
*The trainees referred to here are the folks who are currently being trained by Milt Rodriguez for the work of planting organic expressions of Jesus Christ.