This week I had an interaction (long interaction!) with one of my kids because he kept doing something he shouldn’t have been doing and he kept getting consequences. At one point I found myself saying, “Do you like what is happening to you?” He answered, “No.” I replied, “Then why do you keep doing the same action over and over if you don’t like the result?! You have to change your behavior to get a different result!”
I do this exact same crazy pattern at times. Although the specific behavior is different, the pattern is the same. I get into the habit of doing something even though I don’t like the result, YET, I continue to do it! Do any of you struggle with this? Do you continue eating certain foods even though you don’t like the result of what it does to your body, have the same type of relationship even though you don’t like the result of a relationship being unhealthy, continue to put yourself into situations where you know you will fall under temptation and do things you will regret? If we’re honest, I think we all do these things at times.
In Romans 7:15, Paul shares our frustration over this issue. He says, “For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.” Can’t we all relate? He goes on to say that it is our sin nature that causes us to make bad decisions even though we know it’s not the right thing. He goes on in Romans 8 to talk about how to overcome these things: through a relationship with Jesus Christ. Through a relationship with the One who has overcome sin and wants to dwell within us. When we are in relationship with God and pursue Him, we start to view things in a different light. We should start to make different decisions because we are taking time to evaluate what the outcome will be. When we are in a relationship with God, we should constantly be changing to be more like Him instead of the same old person we’ve been. Our mindset changes. When we follow after God, we reap the benefits of a relationship with Him. We experience full life.
This week, ask God to show you areas in your life where He wants to change and mold you. Pray for wisdom in how to change and then the courage to walk out that change. We don’t want to be people who do the same old behaviors, getting the same old negative results. We want to be people who are looking more and more like Jesus!