Tag Archives: sin

Destroy What Destroys You

6175770250_5f3805cdbb_zI want to sincerely apologize for my hiatus.  It’s been a very long two months, with end of semester papers and projects, bachelor party organizing, graduating from grad school (with highest honors-all credit goes to the Lord!), moving, applying for career jobs (any leads in sports, fitness, recreation, please send my way!) and my brothers wedding.  The aforementioned should not be used as an excuse not to spread His gospel because no matter what we’re doing, as busy or as unbusy our lives may be, we must always be willing to be a beacon, to reach out to those in trouble as 1 Corinthians 15:58 says, “therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”  Moreover, this comes to the topic at hand, and as you read the title, Destroy What Destroys You, we must embrace this idea as instrumental in growing and evolving as a believer.

Think about this for a second, if we all had the control, all had the patience and determination to stop sin in its tracks, we wouldn’t be sinners, right?  If we were able to recognize and realize our actions and behavior were turning detrimental, then we would be living in a perfect world, right?  Well, there’s our problem, as humans and especially as believers.  (If you haven’t read my previous post, Jesus Loves Pornstars, I implore you to stop reading this now, and read it; it’s highly conducive to the idea at hand.)  In other words, self-control is either absent or becomes subject to failure.  Furthermore, what sets us apart from other creatures of God’s creation is our consciousness.  Most often, we think in terms of an angel on one shoulder, and a demon on the other, so at least that’s the depiction of society.  This conscious behavior, thoughts, and actions precede a choice; a choice to choose what is right or wrong, a choice of yes or no, a choice that aligns with His or not.

For non-believers, this right/wrong dichotomy is parallel to their upbringing, societal norms, or even religion.  It’s in a sense their personal standard of living, able to clearly define what’s right or wrong, even with the Jesus Christ not in the picture.  As believers, our one and only way of living is through His Word, through living each day as Christ Jesus wants us to, not based upon society or other standards.  Innumerous studies have been done to investigate how and why people act the way they do, interestingly studying mentally unstable and felonious individuals.  Researchers Cima, Tonnaer, and Hauser (2010) examined how psychopaths process and control their decisions.  Specifically, they found that psychopaths and criminals alike have a “normal understanding of right and wrong, but an abnormal regulation of morally appropriate behavior.”  Even though the vast majority of us aren’t psychopaths or criminals, this study and many alike positively demonstrate we all have an innate moral compass.  So as criminals are beginning their sinful thoughts and actions, there’s always an escape route, there’s always an angel telling them they can be saved, there’s a definitive way out.  But all too often, the devil overcomes these Holy voices to say, “no one likes you, this will show them, it feels good, you’ll be happy, etc, etc, etc.”

Oh so often, after such sinful behavior, we’re fall back to square one, we come back to the dichotomized thoughts of regret and excuses “gosh, I shouldn’t have done that, it felt good, so it was ok, I’m in a tough situation right now, so give me some slack.”  It’s not until we’ve fully committed our lives to serving the Lord, praising His name, that all worldly things don’t mean anything, don’t have value to us, including sinful behavior; lust, selfishness, wicked hearts are lost at the waist side.

So you’re asking, how can I stay consistent with my faithful, devoted, loving lifestyle, being bigger and stronger than temptations?  Well, it may seem easy, but you must take up the Cross daily.  Whatever this may be, reading a daily devotional, studying/memorizing a few scriptures of the Bible, conversing with other Christians, or going to church, we must be involved one way or another with His Holiness.  Establishing these Holy habits is a must for change to occur.  If it’s reading your Bible before you head to work, do it every day, no matter the circumstance.  Once you do it for about two weeks (when the action begins to be neurologically imprinted), it’ll become commonplace in your life.

As you begin this process of seeking out new and healthy behaviors (e.g. by inserting God into your life), you can begin to see/recognize how your sinful thoughts were devastating to relationships, friendships, productivity, and true feelings of love and closeness.   Think about this; is it easier to give into temptation or fight it?  What does it say about your character and faith in God?  The more change that occurs in your life, the more you’ll realize that if He’s taken you to a tough situation, He will get you through it.  No sin, no mistake is bigger than Jesus Christ and His forgiveness.

So when you come to a crossroads of sinning or not sinning, recognize the underlying problem and purge it from your life.  Whether that means getting rid of a television, computer, iPhone application, friendship, or whatever is spawning sinful behavior, sever ties!  You cannot expect to grow in Christ if you’re not willing to let it go completely.  You cannot have one foot in and one foot out.  To have a complete transformation, you must let go of ALL things.  Because Matthew 6:33 says, “but seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

I challenge you today, destroy what destroys you!

Resources

Cima, M., Tonnaer, F., & Hauser, M. D. (2010). Psychopaths know right from wrong but don’t care. Social Cognitive & Affective Neuroscience, 5(1), 59-67.

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I Turn To You

(No, this is not a Christina Aguilera reference)

For the faith to move ahead
And to let go of the past
And to see me as you do
I turn to you

These are some lyrics from the song “I Turn to You” by Selah.  It’s a great song.  If you haven’t had the chance, listen to it.

When I listened to these words, I’m lost in His love.  When we find ourselves lost.  When we find ourselves broken.  We must turn to Him.  If you haven’t been reading my previous posts, it has been an emotional roller coaster in my life of late.

So this song has been a great reminder of who I should be focusing my energy.

In other words, we must not let these life predicaments and issues get in the way of what we should be falling asleep and waking to.  

The reason I started this blog was to be more open with my feelings, grow as a Christian, and to encourage/help anyone who needs guidance in their faith, fitness, and nutrition goals.  Well, as you may have noticed, God has a way of inconspicuously directing our lives.  Whereas, my goal was to have a post for faith every other day and fitness/nutrition on the opposite days.  Well, that goal is still possible, but there’s still some unfinished business and growth that needs to take place in my life before I can begin to venture into new topics.  (Plus, I have many more promising ideas to connect with you on a more personal level, which will hopefully become very successful in His name.)  So bear with me a little longer, grow with me Spiritually, and be part of the encouragement we all need.  

As I have stated in previous  posts, we’re not suppose to be traveling through life alone.  We’re not suppose to be selfish and reliant on our own beliefs and ways of living.  We’re suppose to support and serve each other.  Just like one blogger put it, “we’re suppose to love everyone.”  And it’s true!  As you continue to follow along my journey, we must remember, for faith to move ahead, we must be willing to let go of our pasts, and turn to Him!


Powerless to Lifes’ Pains and Sufferings Part II

Read or reread Part I first.  Sharing our experiences and hardships doesn’t make us better than others.  It’s not BOASTFUL.  You are essentially just showing the hungry where to find the bread.  Sharing doesn’t give us the right to stand above or on top of people.  It’s not meant to belittle people.  Or to say, “well I experienced this, I did this, I did that.”  It’s not about outdoing or showing off our accomplishments in the face of sufferings.  It’s giving other people HOPE.  It’s about giving people a chance.  While we’re sharing with others, it’s imperative to just share, not fix.  We’re not MECHANICs.  As much as we think we can fix people, we can’t.  The only way is to admit we aren’t in control, share our experiences, and not trying to fix people.  God is the only fixer.  He’s the only one that can truly change people.  Whether it’s our bad habits or what, the ultimate goal shouldn’t be to “fix” someone.  One thing that can be done on top of the aforementioned things, is to listen.  Accept them and their sins.  There’s power in listening to others.  No talking, no judging.  Have you ever went to someone, tried to open your heart to them, and they seem to insert their opinions too soon?  A quiet, listening ear may be unfamiliar to people. If they’re in a controlling relationship or family pressures, people may not have the freedom to talk freely.  Don’t be afraid to offer someone a listening ear.  Accept them for who they are.  Don’t try to be a MECHANIC and solve all of their problems.  Just be there for them.  Serve others by simply listening.