This article was first published on July 26, 2012. It is so timely for today, and I decided to share it once again!
Recently, I received a deposit of a large sum of money. It was more than my husband earns in a normal month for his job, and even though we needed to put the money into more practical areas, this regular sum of money has always been a thing for us to use to buy our wants more than our needs. As usual, I had already decided what I wanted to spend the money on for myself this time, my splurge, if you will, and I have really enjoyed it, especially as a writer! There is a problem, though. You see, I realized I'm feeling just like Paul when he wrote:
"I can will it, but I can't do it. I decide to do good, but I don't really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don't result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time. It happens so regularly that it's predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God's commands, but it's pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge. I've tried everything and nothing helps. I'm at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn't that the real question?" (Romans 7:20-24, The Message).
Is there no one who can do anything for me? The good news, YES, there IS someone who can do something for me, to help me!!
"The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different." (Romans 7:25, The Message).
You see, my purchase, no matter how much I wanted it (and really, I still do!) takes from what I really should be putting that money towards. And the confidence I have in doing what my flesh is fighting against, is that if I head toward God in my daily decisions, HE will restore that gesture of doing what is right and one day, I will have the thing that I thought I so badly wanted and needed in the first place.
My mind is conflicted with my heart, but in my heart, I want to please the Father and listen to Him more than I have in the past. He knows my wants (Psalm 23:1), my desires (Psalm 37:4) already. All I have to do is align myself with His Will, His plan for my life, and all the things I have need or want of He will bless me with when it's the right time! It will be far better when it comes from Him, than when I try to do it in my own time and power. And there is no shame, no condemnation for doing the wrong thing and then going back to fix it, especially if your heart motives are right and focused on the Lord!
"Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." (Romans 8:1, NIV).