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- Jacob Ninan
Walls protect us, and they also indicate what belongs to us. As children of God who are living in a sin-corrupted world among those who are still children of the devil (Jn.8:44), we face constant attacks against our spiritual inheritance. Sometimes we get deceived and lower our guard, and sometimes we are caught off guard. Then the attack succeeds and the enemy (sin) makes an entry into our life by breaking down a part of our wall. When we realise what has happened, we repent, confess our sin and our fellowship with God gets restored (1Jn.1:9). Sometimes it is only after a long time that we come to our senses and realise that our wall has been compromised. We have become a bit tolerant towards things that God hates, and we may even have become 'broad minded' about the narrow path that leads to life (Mt.7:13,14). The fact is that our wall has been broken into, and it has become easier for the enemy to enter in and occupy parts of our property.
As long as we are alive, there is still hope, but only if we take quick action. (We shouldn't think we can deal with it afterwards.) If someone had encroached into our earthly property would we sit there quietly? But spiritual invasion is of eternal significance and has to be dealt with thoroughly. We confess our failure to God honestly and without excusing ourselves, and He forgives us. But we need to go further than that. We need to repair the break in the wall, fortify it and take steps to ensure that it does not happen again.
Modern preaching seems to project 'looking inside' as being absolutely dangerous! There is a morose looking inside that is very unhealthy. But a humble, sensible self-examination is the first way to health. By this we can get to know what went wrong, how it happened, and what we could have done to prevent it. Many times we are unable to do this without bias because we have a natural ability to find excuses for ourselves and to blame others or circumstances. But if we seek the Holy Spirit He can guide us to all the truth concerning ourselves (Jn.16:13).
Rebuilding the wall involves identifying our weak spots (because of which we fell), the circumstances in which these weaknesses became active and the ways in which can avoid falling in future. Becoming aware of our weaknesses will help us to be alert to know when we are facing temptations in those areas. Identifying the circumstances that led to our fall can help us to become extra alert when they come up again, or to avoid them if possible.
We fall because our love for God, our fear of God and the fear of the consequences are not strong enough. So a major part of rebuilding the wall is to strengthen these areas. We do that through spending time with the Lord with His word, talking to Him frankly and honestly as to our friend, seeking His grace and wisdom for the future, and being with other sincere Christians encouraging them and receiving encouragement. Then the attacks will become less and less effective.