A couple of weeks ago my Beth Moore bible study opened my eyes to another truth. When we don't experience sorrow for a sin, we have not fully turned from that sin.
"Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. "- 2 Corinthians 7:10 NIV
She talked about how we can't really repent of something thats vague and unspecified. This really opened my eyes. I started to pray for God to open my eyes to my sins so that I could truly repent of them.
I'm reminded of James chapter 1:4. Through that verse I see that every person is tempted by their own evil desire.
"But each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed." NIV
It didn't take long for me to experience God's mighty hand opening my eyes to what holds me back the most from God- negativity.
I usually cover this little nasty part of me by saying, "we'll I'm just critical", or, "well I know what I like". But the truth of the matter is that I'm being negative, and when I'm negative, I can't be honoring God! I can't be praising God! I can't be experiencing the JOY that comes from being in His presence.
No doubt my greatest burden in that I'm in touch with my negative emotions.
(However, my greatest joy is that I'm in touch with my positive emotions!)
I found myself very discouraged, because I felt like I was in a pit. Even though I realized my sin, and wanted to change... I kept messing up. I kept engaging in these negative thoughts and they were consuming me.
Finally it hit me!
I just need to get back up. Instead of dwelling in the negative thought that I can't overcome my negative thoughts... I need get back up and try again.
James 1:12 says:
"Blessed is the man who perseveres under trials because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him." NIV
That is something to be happy about! It's something to be JOYFUL about! You know, I think the devil bringing me negative thoughts is an intentional way of distracting me of my efforts to focus on JOY this year!
Our God is awesome though! And he works in our lives through His spirit. I'm so thankful for that gift!
I get discouraged when I want to make a change but find myself falling back into old habits. It doesn't mean I shouldn't keep trying though! I must persevere!
Don't give up on trying to be better for the Lord!
I want to end with a song that's been playing in my mind all day long! It's a cheesy early millennium style of music that isn't my favorite... but I love the message of the song... and I also love the beginning of the song. My favorite words in the song are:
"I'm not afraid to fall. It means I climbed up high. To fall is not to fail. You fail when you don't try. I'm not afraid to fall, I might just learn to fly, and I will spread these wings of mine."
"I'm not afraid to fall. I know I'll fall again. But I will win this in the end".
It's powerful words! It reminds me of something my daddy has told me many times. And something I've seen and continue to see him live out.
So listen to the song! It'll start your day off positive I promise! :-)