Did you know that in a typical year about 2,000 self-help books come out on the market? Advertisers know that everybody is interested in change. The thing about self-help books and even many of the self-help podcasts out there, is that they tell you to stop doing this and start doing that, which is usually good advice, but the problem is they don’t give you the power to change.
We all have areas that we wish we could change but we’ve just been unable to do it. It may be sexual desires, drinking, spending, eating, or our moodiness to name a few. You name it, and we've probably tried to change it. So, why do we do what we don’t want to do? It’s an old question that the Apostle Paul asked in the book of Romans. Today, we’re going address that question by looking at three things:
Join me in Romans 7:15-25: Paul writes,
"I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin."
Let’s talk brass tacks …
A: Acknowledge the root of the problem.
B: Believe Jesus can change you.
C: Confess your struggle to another person.
D: Dedicate yourself completely to Jesus.
Each of these steps are very important. "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us" (1 John 1:8). Acknowledge the sin today. But don’t lose yourself in a cycle of good intentions, failure, and guilt. Believe that Jesus can change you. Romans 7:24-25 says, "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!" Now, I understand, this next step can be hard, but we’re not meant to do life alone. "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective" (James 5:16). When you completely dedicate yourself to Jesus Christ, you’ll experience the one and only God that keeps His promises.
You DO have the power to change through Jesus Christ. And you can start TODAY!