(If you enjoy it, an online review would be appreciated.)
Introduction ~ Most new Christians “walk on air” for a period of time. But before long Satan brings trials, troubles, temptations, and doubts. Soon the new believer either runs closer to the Cross (God’s desire for you) or runs from it (Satan’s desire for you). Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
personal note: I certainly enjoyed my “honeymoon period” with Christ. But troubles did come—all of which were allowed by my Lord.
The “Average” (our human experience) ~ The Apostle Paul, contrasting trying to live by The Law versus the grace of God, said this, “Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do. If, then, I do what I will not to do, I agree with the law that it is good. But now, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me. I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin” (Romans 7:13-25). The Apostle clearly provides the answer to this problem: Jesus Christ is the only One who can deliver us from a lifestyle of sin.
personal note: As a relatively new Christian I found it perplexing that I continued to sin and that I was more inclined to seek God during times of trouble. Then I began reading The Psalms and discovered I was not alone. King David and other psalm writers frequently used expressions such as, “In my distress I called upon the Lord.”
The “Normal” (God’s way) ~ “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (Romans 12:1-2). “But we all [believers], with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord” (2 Corinthians 3:18).
personal note: Over the years I have improved as I seek to call on my Savior at all times including the good times—but I’m still a work in progress.
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