Do you ever struggle with the idea of "who do people see when they look at me"?
Do you ever look at yourself and think am I so messed up that God would never use me?
Do you ever feel you are so far off track you can never get back again?
If you answered no to these questions I would like to shake your hand because you have truly achieved the unachievable. If on the other hand you care enough and have courage enough to ask yourself these questions I would like to tell you that you are closer to Jesus than you think. WHAT?!
Saved or unsaved we are alike in that we are not perfect in all that we say and do. As Believers however, we can take control over a large portion of that problem. The Apostle Paul said in Romans 7:15 the following:
I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
The short of what Paul is saying is that as Believers, we all have a nature that we have to die to; that is a sin nature. That sin nature would have us continue to say and do the things that we know are wrong. In Paul's reference to "the law" we must understand two things: the first is that the law was God's way of pointing out sin to the people and the second thing was it provided, through blood sacrifice of animals, a remedy to "cover" sin. (NOTE: since the Resurrection of Jesus and as Believers we have never been under "the law". The Law itself was given from God to Moses for the Nation of Israel.) The blood sacrifice that Jesus willing paid on the other hand, "takes away" the sin of the world not just covers the sin of one. That said, when we are "born again" in Christ Jesus we take on a "new" nature that is the old man becomes a new man. Romans 6:6-7 says,
For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin— because anyone who has
died has been set free from sin.
So then why do we keep doing the same things? Because the Enemy is still at work in the world doing all that he can to distract and draw us away from who we have been called to be in Christ Jesus. We know what is right, yet sometime right is not always easy or popular. We must be willing to "travel the road less traveled". This may mean bumps and maybe bruises but in the end the destination will justify the journey!
As Believers we must ask ourselves those questions listed above. We must have the courage to stand and look in the mirror every day and say: Who do people see when they look at me? Do they see the kindness, forgiveness, compassion and the supernatural love of Jesus? If not, tell the enemy the following...The Bible says, "Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you" James 4:7. Stand straight and proud and say, "I am a child of the Most High God, A son/daughter of the Creator of the universe, and heir to the throne of God Almighty! I rebuke you Satan, you have no place here"! Now, put a smile on your face and take the place you have been called to take!
Sanctification means "to be set apart for particular use in a special purpose or work and to make holy or sacred" and it is a process! we are becoming what we will one day be and who we will one day be like. We have the power and authority through Christ Jesus over the enemy, but we must realize it and chose it! People have to see a difference in us, they have to see something they do not recognize, something unlike everyone else. It is the difference that draws people!
If you have the courage to daily seek God, examine yourself, and be willing to change into His likeness than you are closer to perfection than you realize because you are closer to Christ Jesus than you think.