2 Peter 1:3-4 (NIV) – His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 4 Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires.
“We keep falling into the same sin when we fail to believe that holiness really will make us happier than giving in again. Many other factors may influence us, but at the root of habitual sin is a battle not for self-control, but for happiness. What we believe and want, deep in our hearts, really matters.” – John Bloom
We are the happiest when we are doing what we were created to do – to love, worship and glorify God. Seeking the Lord in these ways is far better than reaching back to old habits and tendencies. Our struggles come when we aren’t living as God intended – trusting in other things, means and ways to make us happy. In God’s goodness is our deepest happiness.
In God’s divine power we seize the day for his glory.
In what ways are you not living as God has called to live? How can you dive back in?
Father, thank you for your great and precious promises. May the church find its joy in you alone today! Free me from lesser happiness and immerse me in your divine joy. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
1 John 1:5-7 (NIV) – This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
When our desires conflict with Scripture, human beings do not always live according to what we say we believe. We can say we believe one thing, but our lives betray other allegiances…How can you detect these false beliefs? Start by looking at the things you do in private. Do you live very differently in private than you do in public? Do you permit your imagination to indulge itself in ungodly fantasies? If so, even though you know that God sees everything, you are experimenting with an alternative theology that says that there are some places where God can’t find you. [Welch, Edward T.. Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave]
God’s faithfulness is why we begin each day.
Spend time seeking the Lord in prayer and studying His Word concerning your struggle or unhealthy cravings. The Word of God is powerful and life giving.
Prayer: Father, thank you for your faithfulness. Align my belief with your Word, that I may live true to who I am in Christ. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Psalm 34:8-9 (NLT)
Taste and see that the LORD is good.
Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!
9 Fear the LORD, you his godly people,
for those who fear him will have all they need.
“If the root problem of addictions is false worship, the answer is knowing the Lord, the One who deserves our worship…Scripture is full of teaching on how we are to respond to Jesus…We are told to trust him, obey him, magnify his name, worship him, love him, imitate him, and follow him. One response that might not sound as familiar is that we are told to fear him.
“While the holiness of God will leave many knees knocking when Jesus comes again, a mature fear of the Lord is more akin to awe, devotion, and worship. It is a response that says, ‘In your presence, nothing else matters. You are all that I desire.’ It is a response that is active. It does something…it follows Christ in obedience. It searches out his will and can’t wait to do it. Stop for a moment: ‘It searches out his will and can’t wait to do it.’ Here is the ultimate protection against addictions.” [Welch, Edward T.. Addictions: A Banquet in the Grave]
Before the day begins, He is. God is who defines our day, our lives, and our desires.
Our Father in heaven, holy is your name. Your kingdom come and your will be done in my life today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Ephesians 5:15-20 – Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
As Christians, we experience true forgiveness and freedom, but sometimes we go back to memories and old ‘crutches’ or habits. Reaching back into an old life causes cyclical patterns of habitual sins that diminish the blessing of forgiveness, grace, and joy. As people of God, we are to put off and put on (Eph 4), and we are to be filled with Spirit, speak/sing words of Spirit in worship, fellowship, giving thanks/prayer (Eph 5:18b-20).
This Spirit-filled reality is how we begin each day.
When was the last time you experienced the Holy Spirit’s filling and empowering? Soak in the memory and recognize that in those moments you were most free.
In light of the Spirit’s filling, how can you increase His filling and lessen ‘being filled’ with the struggles and temptations?
Prayer: Father, thank you for the Spirit’s presence in my life. Come Holy Spirit and fill my heart today, help me make the most of every opportunity for your glory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Ephesian 4:17-24 – “So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18 They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19 Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed.”
20 That, however, is not the way of life you learned 21 when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Read through verses 20-24 again. This new reality in Christ is where we begin each day.
Recite/declare out loud all the new attitudes of the mind, and the new ways of Christ-likeness that God has created in your life!
Prayer: Father in Heaven, thank you that the old is gone and the new has come. May I honor your name today and put on the new self, living righteous and holy. In Jesus’ name, Amen.