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TOP GUN • Vertical Roll – 6/19/22

One of the most unusual miracles in the Bible is recorded in 2 Kings Chapter 6. A group of prophets decide to build a new place to meet and ask for Elisha to accompany them to cut down trees near the Jordan River. As the men are working, one man is swinging an ax in the process of chopping down a tree and the ax head flies off the handle and lands in the Jordan River. He is distressed and asks Elisha what he should do because not only has he lost his tool; it is borrowed. An ax with an iron ax head would have been valuable. Elisha asks him to point to the exact spot in the river where the ax head fell. The man does so, and in response Elisha cuts a stick and throws it in the water. The ax head floats to the surface and Elisha instructs the man to pick it up. This is not a magic trick, and the stick that was thrown in had no power, but Elisha displays his faith in a God who can retrieve what has been lost and restore what is not seen.

Scriptures – 2 Kings 6:4-7; Psalm 73:2; Revelation 2:4-5

Verses – But I had almost stopped believing this truth. I had almost lost my faith…. (Ps 73:2) But I do have something against you! And it is this: You don’t have as much love as you used to. Think about where you have fallen from, and then turn back and do as you did at first…. (Re 2:4-5)

Thought – Perhaps you haven’t lost your ax head, but you’ve lost your cutting edge, your spiritual edge. For some there was a time when you were more about the things of God, prayed more, served more, attended faithfully. You had more joy, more peace, more passion. How do you know if you’ve lost your spiritual edge? You start losing heart. Things don’t move you anymore, you serve out of duty, there’s no joy, energy, excitement. Then you start losing faith. You stop taking risks, lose vision for what God wants for your life, start settling for what you want instead of what God wants. How do you regain your spiritual edge? 1) Admit where you are! You must first realize there’s a problem. Your relationship with God isn’t where it should be or needs to be. 2) Acknowledge where you lost your passion, excitement, energy. Whatever has distracted you from God’s purpose needs to be put in its place. It may be busyness, obligations or personal pursuits. The world’s version on living creeps into your schedule and pretty soon, time for the things of God have been pushed out. 3) Take back what you have lost with God’s help. Think about the things you did when your spiritual life was on the cutting edge, moving forward, pursuing God. What were you doing then that you are not doing now? You must turn back (repent) and do as you did when you were walking in close communion with God. God is good. You only need to ask him for help. He can help restore in you what has been lost.

Questions – What spiritual practices do you maintain? Are there any spiritual practices that you’ve allowed to fall by the wayside? Are there areas of your spiritual life that you realize have grown stale…serving, Bible reading, prayer, time with God, sharing your faith, fellowship with other Christians, worship? In what areas do you feel your spiritual edge is sharper and in what areas has it grown dull? Why do people assume that serving, giving and living for God come easily for a Christ-follower and don’t require discipline? How do you feel about spiritual discipline? What edge needs to be sharpened in your spiritual life?

Response – Determine where you need spiritual renewal, a sharpening of your Godly disciplines and practices. Seek God and put in the work needed to restore what you’ve lost.

Prayer – Dear Lord, help me to not grow tired in serving you and doing good. Help my heart and my faith to grow stronger. Thank you for restoring and renewing my strength each day as I seek you. In Jesus’ Name I pray amen.

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