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Letting the days slip by

What is considered a productive day?

It’s a Monday morning, and the start of a new week.

A typical day for me might look like this: a quick breakfast after I wake up, and tea as I throw together a lunch for work, and get ready. I’m quiet and groggy driving the 20 minutes to work, not really thinking about anything, just mentally prepping for the day. I busy myself with what needs to be done at work, and I’m only too happy when 4:30 comes around and I can go home. I make supper, spend some time with my husband, maybe put my feet up a bit, and then get the daily chores done, making sure the house is clean and tidy before I go to bed for the night. A whole day has gone by, and I have been happy and cheerful, kind to others, got the laundry and floors done, and had a productive day.

All in all, at the end of the day I can look back and be pretty satisfied.

What is a spiritually productive day?

But what about my spiritual life? If I haven’t given myself any spiritual nourishment, or thought about my calling, or been awake to the possibilities my day contains, how have I had a spiritually productive day? Sure, I got all the laundry done, paid the bills I’ve been meaning to pay, but how have I progressed spiritually?

To be spiritually productive means that I have seen the sin that dwells in my fleshThe “flesh” is all of the sinful desires/temptations/lusts, etc. that dwell in human nature. It is the source of temptation, and nothing good dwells there. (Galatians 5:19-21; Romans 7:18; Galatians 5:24; Romans 8:5) Other phrases meaning the same as the flesh include: the body of sin, sinful human nature, fallen human nature, sinful nature, fallen nature The term “flesh” can... More (Romans 7:17-20) and have cleansed myself from it. Annoyance at a co-worker, frustration when things don’t happen the way I want them to, or impatience at a slow-working computer. They may seem insignificant, but these sorts of things can come up in my daily life and I have to learn to be free from that. To be spiritually productive means to make progress in getting rid of that “sin in my flesh.” If I think that I can go through a whole day and not have had any temptations at all, then I am simply not awake, because temptations to sinTo commit sin is to consciously do something that you know goes against God’s will. This can be in word, deed, or even thought. (James 1:14-15)... More will always come up in my daily life. If I don’t even see them, it’s because I don’t have my eyes open.

How serious this is! How am I able to become free from the sin in my flesh if I don’t see anything to cleanse myself from?

The reason is that I have become satisfied with the way that I am, and I no longer have a longing in my heart, no need in my life to be finished living according to the lustsThe desires that we experience that go against God’s will. In other words, a desire for anything sinful. See James 1:14. Also called “sin in the flesh.” Although the expression “youthful lusts” is  often thought of in connection with sinful sexual desires, lusts include anything that go against what is good and right in God’s eyes. (2 Timothy 2:22.; Galatians... More of my flesh (1 Peter 4:1-2), so that I can be conformed to the image of Christ; no real hatred of sin. This is extremely dangerous. Then I become complacent, because I do not see sin as exceedingly sinful. (Romans 7:13)

I have to consciously work

Sure, that’s not exactly how I’d put it if I thought about it; I don’t walk around thinking, “I am satisfied with the way that I am and no longer need to cleanse myself,” but it’s more in the form of not noticing when the Spirit speaks to me, and not seeing that I had a chance to humble myself at this time, for example.

If I am satisfied with my spiritual state, then how am I able to progress? I can’t progress if I don’t see a need to. I wasn’t born with a perfect patience, with the ability to easily forgive others, etc. But with God’s grace, I can become like that. I can actually attain divine nature! But I can only come to divine nature by constantly cleansing myself from what I see come up from my flesh. (2 Peter 1:2-4) I have to consciously work on my salvation at all times. (Philippians 2:12)

I need to make time to read my Bible, to fill myself with God’s Word, which is where I get the weapons that I can use in my situations. I need to remember to use my thought life to pray for myself, to pray for others, so that I don’t walk around in the emptiness of my own mind. (Ephesians 4:17) I can build up the others through prayer.

I read the verse this morning, “Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your heart as in the rebellion.” Hebrews 3:15. So when I do hear God’s voice speaking to me, prompting me to do something, I have to be quick to do it. If I stop listening, or keep putting off what I know I should do, or say, then God stops nudging me and I become deaf to the Spirit’s voice. Every morning I need to pray to really have my eyes open to the situations and temptations of the day, so that I can be quick to overcome. I have to pray for a hatred against sin so that when God does show me something in my flesh, that I can hate it and be quick to destroy it.

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