The Shedding

July 10, 2018
by Lynne Phipps

Ephesians 4:20-24 – But that isn't the way Christ taught you! If you have really heard his voice and learned from him the truths concerning himself, then throw off your old evil nature — the old you that was a partner in your evil ways — rotten through and through, full of lust and sham. Now your attitudes and thoughts must all be constantly changing for the better. Yes, you must be a new and different person, holy and good. Clothe yourself with this new nature. (TLB)

Now that the really warm weather has arrived, the horses get down to business shedding the last of their winter coats. They groom one another with their noses. They sidle up against the fence and then drag themselves along it to loosen even more hair. They back up and rub their rumps against the trees. But the most dramatic action is when they literally throw themselves on the ground and roll and roll, writhing on the packed earth to rid themselves of their now-excess coat.

Watching them, I was reminded of today's verses, written by Paul, regarding the changes that need to occur in a person's life once they have really come to understand their salvation in Jesus Christ and the truths that He teaches. Paul advises, "throw off your old evil nature". In other words, don't be ho-hum about it. Don't sit around waiting for things to change in your life. Be dramatic. Set your heart on pursuing the truth of Christ and His ways. Literally, set your heart, mind, and body to throw off old attitudes and thoughts, and immerse yourself in the new nature that God has blessed you with in Christ.

Such thoughts made me look at my own life. Yes, there has been much change over the years, but at the same time, I must ask, have I become complacent in regard to growing in holiness and goodness? Have I become settled in my ways, giving myself the excuse that nobody is perfect in order to cling to certain old attitudes and thoughts that I am rather tired of continuing to take to the Lord for His healing?

Yet, Paul does not give us an option to quit trying. He clearly states that our attitudes and thoughts must all be constantly changing for the better. As God's people, we must continually be in flux, growing, being new and different, holy and good. We must ever be clothing ourselves with this new nature, by regularly clothing ourselves in the truth of God's Word and the person of Christ, through the power of His Holy Spirit.

So, let us not grow weary of throwing off and shedding our old evil natures, even if they are only a shade of their former selves. Rather, let us continue the good fight to be new and different people, holy and good, ever in flux for the glory of His kingdom and the betterment of this world.

Prayer: Father God, strengthen our hearts and minds today to be honest with You and ourselves in regard to any areas in our lives that still need changing. Guide us through the truth of Your Word to clothe ourselves in Christ, who is our new nature. In His name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Lynne Phipps <lynnephipps@hotmail.com>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Love the picture of rolling horses! Thanks for your message, Lynne.


    Thank you, Lynne. Good reminder for all of us. We do tend be complacent.


    Thanks Lynne for sharing this encouraging devotional reminder with us. Blessings.


    Thank you for this vivid example. Every time I see a horse in a field I will be reminded of this truth.


    Thank you, Dear Lynne, for today’s devotional, my heart “Pants” to be more like Him!
    Thank you again.


    Hi Lynne, You amaze me at how often you can use your animals as analogies for scripture verses! I always look forward to your shared wisdom and advice. Keep up the good work! Blessings to you.
    (ON)


    Lynne
    Great analogy between horses shedding their winter coat and our shedding our old self as we become a new creation in Christ. I say a loud AMEN to what you have shared.
    Blessings.


    Greetings Lynne,
    Thank you for another great devotional reading. I do enjoy your writings which always express a thoughtful and deep message.
    Blessings,
    (B.C.)


    Hi Lynn, I thought it might be you when I read about the horses, and you are so right – we need to shed our old habits, but sometimes it is hard to do isn’t it.
    I always enjoy your devotionals.
    Thank you for this one.
    Blessings.


    Thank you, Lynne.
    A wise reminder! It’s so easy to sink into complacency
    Thank you for another ‘ground-rooted’ message. I always appreciate your down to earth wisdom… rolling in the dirt like your horses!!
    Blessings.


    Hi Lynne:
    I couldn’t agree with you more. We must never be complacent with who we are.
    This is very hard at times. It can be so easy to slip back into bad behaviours especially when we are with people who are very different from ourselves (family). Those who don’t believe or know Jesus as their Saviour don’t know what to make of us and we can feel like a fish out of water when we are around them. This is where we have to be strong and be a Christ-like example.


    Dearest Lynne, I’ve just spent about 2 hours wrestling with this very action that we are exhorted to take. Funny how we fight against what is clearly best for us!! We are so stubborn in our own sense of self-justification … unwilling to ‘let it go’, not understanding the depths of the concepts of confession and repentance and forgiveness. How distressing!! Then I read your reflection and felt the weight being something that can be brushed off. Your pictures turn ideas and concepts into visuals, and I am always helped!! What a blessing you are. PTL. (Praise the Lord).
    Hope is renewed! God bless.


    Dear Lynne,
    Thank you for the devotional;
    The fruit of the Spirit as: “Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control” (Galatians 5:22, 23a:NIV).
    We emphasize the positive – and we should. Yet sometimes the Word of God points out the negative too, Prior to the quote above, in Galatians 5: 19-21, we have “The acts of the sinful nature….” These we need to throw off as we grow the fruits of the Spirit>”
    Keep writing.

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