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Christ in us - the hope begins there

When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves. (Viktor E. Frankl)

I would challenge this thought a bit to remind each of us that change is not our job alone. We try a lot of things to change things about ourselves. We diet, wanting to look a certain way in our clothes - but then we bounce back to needing to wear that bigger size. We deep clean our homes, wanting that 'clean and fresh' look - but then we drift back into allowing the clutter to build and the dust bunnies to collect. WE try, but God asks us to allow him to transform us.

You didn’t think, did you, that just by pointing your finger at others you would distract God from seeing all your misdoings and from coming down on you hard? Or did you think that because he’s such a nice God, he’d let you off the hook? Better think this one through from the beginning. God is kind, but he’s not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change. (Romans 2:3-4)

God isn't 'soft' on our sin - he might not always crack down hard on us right away, allowing us to proceed as we so desperately desire. When we have pursued our sin to the end, we feel guilty and then we want to change. We don't ever change just because we feel guilty - we need a new mindset and that only comes through the power of the Holy Spirit within. We do not change our attitude, mindset, or actions alone. We need God moving in us and through us if we ever want to change.

Over the past couple of days, we have explored the importance of our mindset and how the mindset we keep formulates our expectations (hopes, beliefs). Until God moves in us, change won't come forth from us. It is Christ in us that is the hope of our glory. The mystery in a nutshell is just this: Christ is in you, so therefore you can look forward to sharing in God’s glory. It’s that simple. That is the substance of our Message. We preach Christ...we teach in a spirit of profound common sense so that we can bring each person to maturity. To be mature is to be basic. Christ! No more, no less. That’s what I’m working so hard at day after day, year after year, doing my best with the energy God so generously gives me. (Colossians 1:27-29)

The power of Christ works through us - it begins deep within us when we feel conviction because of one of our weaknesses. Then he works within us, changing our mindset, and ultimately, he changes our 'heart-set'. Change is possible when the heart is changed by his power and through his grace. Change becomes 'permanent' or 'lasting' when we allow Christ to be the one making the change within us - building new habits within us until we no longer pursue that sin any longer. Just sayin!


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