We recently were discussing the benefits of Positive Biblical Life-Change on Sunday mornings and what it genuinely looks like. We started with the motivation for "change" itself.
1) A few change, simply because they have a heart to bless the Master, Jesus Christ. Sadly, this type of change reflects the motivation of very few of us.
2) More of us change because of some form of Peer Pressure --- either positive or negative.
3) Sometimes the changes are made for us by others.
4) However, most of change when the pain of remaining the same --- becomes more painful than the --- pain of change itself.
Think about it a moment. When have our greatest moments of personal change taken place? Under what circumstances and decision making? How painful was it?
What does it take for us to make a commitment to change? More importantly, what does it take for us to commit to Positive, Biblical Life-Change? Keep in mind that in God's Economy --- obedience leads to blessings!
We also looked at identifying Unsafe and even Toxic relationships. Proverbs identifies two major types of these individuals:
The Proverbial Foolish --- those who will not Listen, will not Learn, will not Change, and will not Repent.
Or even more unsafe and toxic --- the Proverbial "Scorners" --- those who Verbally, Emotionally and/or Physically Abuse us.
In both cases Scripture tells us we're to limit our interaction with then --- and if any way possible --- remove ourselves from them.
Too often, we make the mistake of think that if we just hang in there and love them and instruct them --- they''ll change. Let me ask you --- "How's that working for you?" Sadly, we've just entered a form of idolatry called "co-dependency." Sadly, we've demonstrated that WE'RE the ones who will not listen, will not learn, will not change and will not repent.
Even worse, because we want to do it our way rather than God's way --- we're demonstrating that we think our love and wisdom --- are greater than His, As my wife Lisa has pointed out, "If God's Love and Wisdom won't change someone, then our love and wisdom won't either." There is nothing we can say or do in such circumstances except to remove ourselves and pray! Do we really think we can change someone, or that we know better what to do than the greatest "Change Agent" in the universe --- He Who is Sovereign in Wisdom, Power and Goodness?
But here's a caution --- it's true that progress doesn't come without change, but change doesn't always lead to progress. Those who make a life-style of "running" --- frequently changing jobs, relationships, churches, etc., often do so to run, hide, or cover-up, just like Adam and Eve in the garden. We rationalize and self-justify our decisions, even blaming others. In reality, we simply lack the moral courage and integrity, the faith, to trust God and allow Him to do His work in our lives. And sadly, our change never leads to progress or personal growth. Why? Because WE might just be the problem --- and when we run --- we take ourselves with us!
So how about it, is it time to make a change --- Positive Biblical Life-Change? God's Word and the Holy Spirit can help us to make wise choices and empower us to do it.
Pastor Bob Morgan is the founding pastor of HCCF. His pastor's "heart-cry" is to see God glorified through the liberating power of the Gospel by leading people to freedom in Christ, and positive, biblical life-change.