Spiritual Madness…

Spiritual Madness…

ChaosFor many, the month of March means the beginning of spring, the budding of flowers, escaping the bitterness of winter, and getting back outside for that good ole pollen-ridden air. For sports fans, the month of March brings them the single most unique tournament experience in all of sports, March Madness. Last year, neither of these things could be properly enjoyed as the tournament was canceled and we sheltered in our homes from the pandemic. However, this year more and more nature fans and sports fans alike can enjoy what makes March so great for them!

March Madness is undoubtedly the greatest descriptor that this sporting event could be given. The term, ‘madness’ has been defined as “a state of frenzied or chaotic activity.” Every single year, some relatively unknown school comes out of nowhere and upsets a dominant big-name school… sending fan’s brackets into the shredders. This year, about 40 Million brackets were filled out by fans. Out of all those millions of brackets, not a single one remains perfect, and the tournament is only halfway complete. That is where this competition separates itself from the rest. Going into the tournament, no one in the entire world has any earthly idea of what will happen. Every team has a chance, and nothing can be taken for granted. The parity found in this chaotic and frenzied basketball madness is unparalleled.

While this might make for a wonderful sports fan experience, madness is not what we aspire to in our spiritual life. Even though madness is the last thing we should want for our walk with God, it is often what manifests in our spiritual decision-making. If you were to fill out a “Spiritual Madness” bracket, how would yours look? What sins, struggles, and shortcomings are huge upset favorites when placed next to your soul? The sad part that is often missed about this unique basketball experience is that these big-name schools who had terrific seasons, incredible team comradery, and seniors who invested their entire college careers…are sent home before they even realize what just happened. There really is no difference in our spiritual lives; if we are not careful, these poor decisions can derail us before we even know what hit us. How many of the following are in your Spiritual Madness bracket?

1. A weak prayer life…

2. Lack of personal Bible study…

3. Deficiency in spiritual fellowship…

4. Refusal to take ownership of your own faith…

5. Knowing what is right and intentionally choosing the opposite…

If we are not overtly aware of the spiritual chaos that these maddening decisions can introduce to our walk with God, we will be defeated by them before we ever even realized what hit us. God has done everything in His infinite power to prepare us for the madness that surrounds us every single day. “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17. God’s Word is able to make us COMPLETE and ready for EVERY good work. If anything is lacking in our spiritual lives, we have to realize it is always on OUR end! The bottom line is, God has given us all the necessary tools to defeat even our personal worst enemies. “… let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith…” Hebrews 12:1b-2a.

We must grow in our knowledge of God’s Word and in our relationship with Jesus Christ. If we do that, all the madness Satan can throw at us will not be enough to stop us from gaining the victory. Perhaps Paul said it best, “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the world of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” 1 Corinthians 15:57-58. Whenever we finally realize that God has already given us the victory in our battle, we can truly be steadfast and immovable even when the spiritual madness ensues.

-Ben Hogan, Minister of Evangelism