I have this sin. It won’t leave me alone. I tell myself it’s time for change only to fall victim to it again. I beat myself up about it, set goals for mastering it and I pray for it to leave me, but it stays and I am weak. I feel bound by its chains.
At first I didn’t mind my sin; I even loved it. Satan is so very deceitful, isn’t he? Then problems came. I have wrestled with this sin for many years, argued with God about it and even justified it in my own mind at times. But I hear God, and He tells me the truth, “It separates Me from you,” and this truth is revealed in my feelings of unworthiness and shame.
I am like Paul.
“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate, I do. I have the desire to do what is good, but cannot carry it out.”
(Romans 7:15, 18)
It doesn’t matter what my sin is: greed, lying, addiction, gossiping, abuse of my temple, lack of compassion, jealousy, looking at things we shouldn’t, drunkenness… it all separates us from our Savior.
You can relate, right? Whether you love your sin, want it to go away, or have mastered it by the grace of God, I think we all have one that is a constant struggle. Satan finds our areas of weakness and tempts us over and over. He is persistent.
So what now? What can I do? Shall I continue in my sin knowing that God’s grace is sufficient? “By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?…Just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may have a new life!…For we know that our old self was crucified with Him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with that we should no longer be slaves to sin.” (Romans 6:2-6)
How God, how? How do I stop being a slave to this sin that You won’t take from me?
I have determined at this point that it comes down to one thing: OBEDIENCE. Jesus said, “Anyone who loves Me will obey My teaching.” (John 14:23). I LOVE Jesus, so obedience is the way. Which is great since I hate being told what to do. Most times I would rather stomp my feet and scream “NO” like a three-year old, but I love my Savior and He has told me that He cannot use me to my full potential while I remain a slave to this sin. I am tired of not being who He intended me to be. I want to be used to my full potential.
But, I need help. I cannot do this alone. What can I do?
1. Communicate. I have already spoken to my husband about my struggle. This has allowed him to understand, pray for me and encourage me.
2. Prayer. I will remain in prayer daily. My church offers prayer sessions where prayer warriors will pray over you for freedom from your chains. I have heard incredible things about these sessions. So, in addition to my requests of the Holy Spirit to remove this from me, I will schedule my session.
3. Counseling. I can seek a Christian counselor to help me walk me through conquering this sin and provide me with additional ideas/tools as necessary.
4. Community. I will stay in community with fellow Christians who will encourage, uplift and pray for me. I will meet regularly with my friend who has been an accountability partner.
5. Practice. I will actually practice what I intend to do when temptation arrives. Practice makes perfect!
And most important,
6. The Armor of God. I will daily put on the full armor of God so that I can take my stand against the devil and his schemes. The belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, my feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit (which is the word of God). (Galatians 6:13-17)
I look forward to freedom in Christ. But for now I will give thanks to God who rescues me from this body subject to death through Jesus Christ (Romans 7:24-25) and I will delight in the fact that His power will be made perfect in my weakness. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10)