Do you realise that your spirit can be damaged and undermined? If you allow the negativity or offense of another person to enter your spirit it will sabotage your life. What God has for you is far too valuable to allow your spirit to be ruled and robbed by someone else’s defeat, cynicism or pessimism. David said it clearly in Psalm 101:3,
I hate the work of those who fall away; it shall not cling to me.
I cannot reinforce this too many times: If you don’t guard your own spirit, unhealthy ‘stuff’ will attach itself to your spirit and cling to you. David was determined he would not allow that to happen to him. He goes on in verse 4 and says,
A perverse heart shall depart from me.
Perverse means twisted. Something shifts; something changes. Have you ever been in a conversation with people and after they leave it’s sort of ‘on you’, you just don’t feel good? If you expose yourself to the wrong spirit, you’ll find yourself looking through a different lense – your perspective gets twisted. You start to think, “Ooh, maybe that is right, I hadn’t really noticed that before.” Suddenly it starts clinging to your spirit and the devil will use it to ensnare and rob you.
Sometimes love makes tough decisions. In 2 Thessalonians 3 the Apostle Paul was very clear when he said don’t hang around gossips and busybodies. Avoid them because you have to look after your own spirit.
I can still remember many years ago realising that I had to walk away from a long term friendship. I hadn’t seen this friend for a long time and when we caught up for lunch, this friend was so negative. He undermined everything that was valuable to me and everybody in my world. He was so critical; his spirit was just not good. As we were saying goodbye, I knew in my heart I would never contact him again. Why? Because I was young and because what God had ahead for me was far too important to allow what was in his spirit to sabotage mine and become part of me.
Keep a right spirit when it comes to other people’s issues and negativity. We want to live our lives being a blessing to people, helping people and reaching out to people – but that is different to allowing someone else’s spirit to take hold of yours.
Father God, give me wisdom when it comes to dealing with the issues of life. Bring to mind wrong thoughts and perspective that might be clinging to me and clouding my vision. Teach me to live with a positive outlook that is refreshing to everyone that I encounter, causing people to see Christ in me.
Proverbs 4:23 (NIV)
Deuteronomy 4:9 (Message)
John 11:9-10 (Message)