WALK THIS WAY! Take a Deeper Dive into this past weekend's message - TRANSFORM - as we prepare our hearts for an awesome weekend ahead!
This past weekend, as we began our new series “Walk this Way”, we went a little old-school in our series title. Many of you will recall the song from Run DMC, and it’s clear that one of the members in the group became a reverend, and he changed his walk along the way. So this week, as we take A Deeper Dive, let’s begin with a question. What does it take to change?
Early on in our walk with God, we "try" to break bad habits. We can feel helpless in many ways, but when we read Romans 7, we know it was written for us. Most of us have felt that way at some point; like we were incapable of changing; like we just needed to work a little harder, be a little more devoted. This is where we get derailed in our thoughts of what it means to live life in the Spirit of God.
Let us first acknowledge that there is a place for seeking, perseverance, and wielding both the human spirit and our free will. Even still, if we finish where we start we may find ourselves coming up short. You see, in a race sometimes you start and finish at the same line, but there is a process, a course, that you run. In the race of faith, we begin and end at the same place...Jesus Christ. The difficulty is when we start running the race and at some point begin to think or feel that we are responsible for our outcome. "Run a little faster, a little harder, and finally you'll get to where you want to be," we tell ourselves. However, life doesn't always work that way. When we get spiritual amnesia and forget that we need Jesus Christ and His work on the cross from beginning to end, this is where we get in an endless cycle of regret.
Life happens. Friendships break. Marriages fail. Relationships die. In each of these, there is a responsibility of working, but we are not solely responsible for the outcome alone. In our walk with God, Paul tells us that all of our good deeds are like filthy rags. When he says this, he's referring to used, filthy rags. GROSS! Remember that the next time you feel like boasting! The fact that Paul says this, a man who, in the world’s eyes, had every reason to boast, should get our attention.
The way we change is the same way that we get forgiveness from sins. Yes, bear fruit with repentance, as a tree is known by the fruit it bears. But the fruit is only as good as the root. Moreover, the root of who we are as followers of Jesus has to begin with His work.
With this in mind, as we begin the Easter season go back to the cross. Whatever your struggle is, it's time to stop trying to do it on your own. The same cross you went to for forgiveness, in the beginning, is the same one you go to now. So if it's a matter of forgiveness, it's the same cross. If there is trouble in any relationship, whether in Heaven or on Earth, remember the one who runs to the cross first wins. The cross is Jesus.
We are helpless to change ourselves or others, but if we remember that the ground is level at the foot His cross, we will find the change we so desperately seek. As you run your race this season, check out a few verses that will help you as you seek to walk His way.
John 15:1-8 (Focus especially on verse 5)
1 Corinthians 3:11
May you be changed in the light of His glory, and His work on the Cross.