Sunday, September 30, 2012

Change You Really Can Count On...

Do you ever wish you could change who you are?  Is there some bad habit in your life that you would like to eliminate?  There is a way to do exactly that:

Romans 12

1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. 3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. 9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. 17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord. 20 Therefore "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head." 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

In my King James Bible, verse 2 reads:  "...be not conformed..."  In other words, stop being conformed to this world and be transformed by renewing your mind so that you can find out what God wants you to be or do.

I guarantee you that if you do as these verses suggest, you will be a changed person.  There's no help for it.    When you completely forego your wants and follow the leading of God through His Holy Spirit, you will find strength to say no to those things you do that you don't want to do.  You will find the courage to do that thing you want to do but are too scared or lack the confidence to do.  You will find that your desires change and begin to look more and more like the things that God wants and less like the things that this world finds important.  Are you addicted to cigarettes, alcohol, gambling, pornography?  If you REALLY (and I mean REALLY) die every time you start to take a drink or light one up, or place your bet or start searching on line (or wherever) and say to yourself, "no, I have died and I am no longer alive.  It is Jesus Christ walking around in this body, and He has nothing to do with this", I am certain that you WILL see change in your life.  I knowbe cause I've been there and done that (and, as a matter of fact, I'm still there).

Lord, Jesus, I thank you that you are true to your word.  We only need to seek you and ask for your help and you are happy and willing to help us become all that you intended for us to be.  I pray for those who are out there and want to change but don't think they can.  We both know better.  I ask, Lord, for your glory and your honor, that you would draw them near  to you and let them experience your love, mercy, grace, acceptance and the feeling of knowing that You are an advocate before the Father on behalf of each and every person who accepts your sacrificial death, burial and resurrection as atonement for their sin.  You are so worthy of our praise, thanksgiving and love.  May these words be your words, and I pray that you will use your Word for the purpose for which you intended.  In your name I pray these things.  Amen.




  





  
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