The beginning of a new year brings a desire to change. We resolve to be different and to improve. In the beginning we are committed to work toward whatever goal we have placed in our sights, but how determined are we? Is our resolve the same in February as it is in January? Let's face it, our changing is subject to change because our desire is lacking the drive to continue. We all fall short (Romans 3:23) and sometimes forget our purpose for change.
How about the day we surrendered our life in baptism to our Lord? From that moment until now, how is our life resolve? What goals have we set? What improvements do we desire to make?
The following lessons will take our lives and promote a realization that change, resolve, and growth is necessary to walk with our savior, but not without a plan! Many times, outside circumstances like family, personal relationships, traditions, and natural disaster can interfere with personal walks with God. Can I change without compromising truth? Can I resolve to be different and maintain relationships?
Ephesians 1:18-21, "I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened so that you may know what is the hope of his calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might, which He brought about in Christ when He raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at the right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named not only in this age but also in the one to come ..."
Do we suffer from apathy? Have our eyes become so dim that change or improvement has become all but impossible? Have we forgotten the hope we have through our Savior? Have we lost all care and concern about our Father's greatness and the power He showed through His son? Know that God holds all things together in our lives through His son. Would it be hard to imagine how much He is working through our lives for change and an attitude of resolve in this world to make us better people and a greater influence in God's kingdom?
Many Christians need revitalization of their spiritual lives but have no direction, no goals, and no hopes. They are in need of a re-focusing on Christ. What change should I desire with respect to my God?
I must have a relationship with God that improves over time. A relationship that grows between our Father and a son/daughter is built on communication, understanding, and a daily walk with God.
To know God or to abide in Him is more than using Him name as a reference. It creates freedom (John 8:31-32) in a world that sin holds in bondage (Romans 6:17-18). True knowledge creates hope and reliance on God's power and understanding of God's great promises (2 Peter 1-11). To know God is overwhelming in the inner man to Him who pays homage to God (Ephesians 3:14-19).
What am I willing to do for change? There is an old saying "practice makes perfect." Not that we could ever become perfect on our own, but we can work towards becoming more perfect. Work out your salvation with fear and trembling. Understand that change or a modified response may be necessary.
Change should not come without a plan or without purpose. Change for the sake of change can be misguided or misdirected. Our purpose for change, whether as individuals or a congregation, should be for the betterment of our relationship with God. This will in turn have an effect on others around us.
What change should occur in respect to others?
How are relationships affected by our resolve to change?
Other thoughts to consider:
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