Do You Have Your Stink On A Leash?

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;  to be made new in the attitude of your minds;  and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

(Ephesians 4:22-24)

Spiritual and emotional healing takes time. It takes time to overcome the many things we’ve lived with for so long. We serve a powerful God who can make anything disappear just by thinking about it, but there are times we must learn to walk through the battle to become stronger against that which kept us bound for so long. We see in Judges 2 where God was angry with the next generation of Israelites (the one after Joshua died) because they turned their backs on Him and worshiped other gods. Verses 20-23 states:

Therefore the Lord was very angry with Israel and said, “Because this nation has violated the covenant I ordained for their ancestors and has not listened to me, I will no longer drive out before them any of the nations Joshua left when he died. I will use them to test Israel and see whether they will keep the way of the Lord and walk in it as their ancestors did.” The Lord had allowed those nations to remain; he did not drive them out at once by giving them into the hands of Joshua.

Now this was because He was angry with this generation of Israelites, but we see another reason in Judges 3:1-4:

These are the nations the Lord left to test all those Israelites who had not experienced any of the wars in Canaan (he did this only to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience):  the five rulers of the Philistines, all the Canaanites, the Sidonians, and the Hivites living in the Lebanon mountains from Mount Baal Hermon to Lebo Hamath. They were left to test the Israelites to see whether they would obey the Lord’s commands, which he had given their ancestors through Moses.

If God were to remove everything from us immediately, we would not know how to win our battles and overcome. If there is a nation who has never been to war, there will come a time when they will have to learn how to defend themselves because someone will eventually come up against them. In the healing process, we must learn how to battle against our flesh and against the enemy, through prayer and scripture, when he tries to tempt us. There will be some areas the Lord may remove quickly, yet there may be other areas He may have us battle while leaning on Him for strength as this will make us spiritually stronger with a more permanent healing.

The one thing we can’t do is put our stink on a leash. What does this mean? It means we can’t pretend to be healed and just have our issues on a leash under some control. If this is the case, then several things can happen:

God wants honesty from us and for us to face our issues instead of hiding them or pretending they are gone when in fact they are still there, just on a leash. Eventually leashes break or wild animals attack. Eventually God will have us face our stink.

How do we know if it’s gone or just on a leash? When we are healed, people’s words and actions won’t affect us nor infect us as they once did and we will continue walking in Christ’s Word. They may sting a little, but the soothing Words of the Lord will be like a balm to our wounds and heal quickly. In other words, our emotions won’t rule us. However, if we only have our stink on a leash, it will come out sooner or later. Like a skunk, we will spray our stink at others (through negative comments or sarcasm) when we feel threatened, then go back to being on a leash, under some control.  

Take time today to evaluate yourself. Are you truly healed and your stink gone for good, or is your stink merely on a leash, somewhat controlled but comes out when you feel threatened. When we come to Christ, He teaches us how to overcome our flesh, breaking our chains piece by piece, so our stink is gone for good.

Lord, help me to overcome my flesh. There are times I feel I have self-control but other times where when I feel threatened or hurt, I spray others with negative words that can harm. Lord, strengthen me and break my chains completely. Humble me, Lord, and heal me completely so I my walk will not be hindered. I ask this in Jesus name…Amen.