Stuck in the rut of reoccurring sins, bad habits, unhealthy attitudes? You want to change but can’t seem to overcome the dysfunction in your life. If this doesn’t describe you, perhaps it describes some of the people you serve.
You might rehearse God’s commands, maybe even memorize pertinent Scripture. Yet, change still alludes you.
Certainly turning to God’s Word is the way to go as “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Tim. 3:16). Memorizing Bible verses follows the example of the psalmist who said, “I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.” (Ps. 119:11) — So, why do you, or those you serve, remain the same?
What’s Needed for Those Who are Stuck But Want to Change?
Changed lives doesn’t come merely by knowing what the Bible says or memorizing it. That’s just the starting point. You need to get to know the God of the Bible … not just about Him, but to really know Him to the point where you truly rely on Him.
Here’s the flow:
1) The more you get into the Word, the more you will get to know the God of the Bible.
2) The more you get to know the God of the Bible, the more you will trust what He says to be right and true and for your good.
3) The more you trust the God of the Bible to be true, the more you will accept His grace as sufficient not only for eternal salvation but also for following His ways and overcoming in the here and now.
My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. (2 Cor. 12:9)
For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age … (Titus 2:11-12)
4) When you accept His grace as sufficient, THEN you are ready for His power to work in you to make changes where needed and live in ways that demonstrate accountability to and alignment with Him.
Helping Others Get Unstuck
In light of the flow described above, we can help others change, by doing the following:
- Make sure our teaching and other ministries aren’t just Bible-based, or Bible-centered, but also focused on helping people get to know the God of the Bible. Without that foundation, there’s little hope for sustained change.
- Help people make the leap from what they know about God to how this knowledge applies to their lives. What are the implications of having a Holy God? … of a Gracious God? … of an Almighty God?
- Pray that people know Him more and more and trust Him more and more.
For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might … (Col. 1:9-11)