Last week I sat in a crack house and spoke with a man holding a baseball bat about life and Jesus. He said, "I'm going to come to the Marquee for your church some night, when things cool down here." My reply was, "Why don't we start something right here in your space? Why not find Jesus right here?"
"I pray for you, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisodm and revelation so that you may know Him." - Eph. 1:16,17
What can you do when your dealing with addictions? What do you do when you need to make some core changes in your life? How do you look your self directly in the eye and see clearly the things that you are holding on to that are really bringing hurt, pain or simply holding you in unhealthy patterns of physical and spiritual life? What do YOU do?
- Pull up your Socks? I just need to try harder. Discipline myself. Get up earlier. Fight harder. Make better decisions in the moments. Think good thoughts. REALITY CHECK: The first step to any kind of change IS getting a clear picture/definition of the situation you're stuck in; However, just to TRY harder brings only temporary results at it's best. Self reliance is still reliance on the same old self.
- Build Some Fences? Join AA. Get an accountablity partner/team. Get a trustee. Put protective software on your computers. Go to jail. Go to a recovery program. Enter Rehab. Many of our struggles come by keeping addictions covered up or by only hanging out with those people, or elements that keep us close to our addiction and a sure way to fail. REALITY CHECK: Fences like recovery programs and accountablity partners are great fences- but honestly they are not enough to set us free. A man that I know who had three of his 'accountablity' partners leave their wives and kids by falling into sexual sin defined acountablity partners by saying, "It is when two guys sit down over coffee for an hour a week and lie to each other." Some times it's easier to stay in addiction because you are finding solace in 'confession' and not truly changing.
- Get Innovative? Move away. Develop a creative alternative. Find a new hobbie. Go for a run. Get a new job. Enter a new program. There are times in our lives when we need a new perspective and a fresh start in order to jump start a new pattern of behavior. REALITY CHECK: Often we discover that even though we have started a new pattern of behavior we still manifest the same habits of addiction only now attached to a different personality flaw.
These three steps we often take to change are limited at best.
"...that the Father of glory might give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation so that you might KNOW Him."
Revelation- is unfolded and experienced knowledge
Wisdom- is applied knowledge
CHANGE doesn't come by INNOVATION but by REVELATION in KNOWING God!
Fences, pulling up your socks and innovative ideas are only successful in as far as it allows you to enter into knowing the person and power of God in your life!
"...so that you might KNOW Him, that the eyes of your heart might be enlightened so that you might know the HOPE to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance, and His incomparable great power for us who believe..."
Know the hope of the call - pointing back to the day you came to know God. His loving pursuit of you. The first recognitions of your need; the reality that the goodnes of God was intended for you. The infant cry of faith, there is no other name under heaven or earth whereby we can be saved.
Know the riches of His glorious inheritance- pointing ahead to the security that all you have and need are already secure in Christ Jesus. Stop praying for a greater blessing, a second blessing, for more grace, for more assurance- "In Christ you have every spiritual blessing in heavenly places!" This IS yours in Christ Jesus- Be confident and courageous that all you need in Christ is there for you.
Know His incomparable great power that is FOR YOU who believe- this is the assurance of victory for TODAY! This is the same transforming and displayed power of God in raising up Jesus Christ from the dead! Victory over death and freedom from the strangle hold of sin.
Truly KNOWING GOD is from HEAD to HEART to LIFE
= Transformed Life. This is something only God can do!
Do you KNOW Him?