{Breaking the Cycle}

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

{Albert Einstein}

I’m sure people would disagree if you told them they were insane. In fact they’d probably turn it over an say it was you who could use some counseling, but in truth, all of us have at some point been insane.
Einstein’s observation, (as usual) is eye opening. How often have we set our lives into a pattern, caught in a loop of old habits? This concept is easily applied to everyday routine, but what if it were applied to everyday faith. I have a very present thorn in my side that causes me to fall, most people do, but after a while I found that I was going the motions: get tempted, fall, feel guilty, pray for forgiveness, act ‘righteous’ to compensate. This is a common pattern for every Christian, as it says in ‭Romans‬ ‭3‬:‭23-24‬ NIV “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” But I found that after a while my prayers for forgiveness began to sound like a script. It’s when I realized I’d gotten to that point that I had to make a change.
Many Pastors speak of God’s patience; for me, I already knew it and felt superiority that I understood this aspect of God’s character while others didn’t. Yet what I’d failed to realize was that I was using His patience as a crutch. I’d become too familiar with His patient forgiveness and found that I was taking it for granted. When I became comfortable in knowing that He would always forgive me I became stagnant in my faith, comfortably putting myself in an endless loop. The root of this cycle was simple:
I didn’t want change.

My biggest flaw is knowing my flaws, yet being unwilling to change them. I knew the steps necessary to break the cycle but didn’t want to, because I did not believe God would strengthen me against my sins when they came to tempt me. When God would nudge me to do something I particularly didn’t want to do I would nestle deeper into his patience and avoid it by saying “when I’m stronger in my faith” or “when I’m older” or “I’ll pray about it”. Fortunately, God is also an active God, and He knew that I would need some serious pushing in order to get out of my laziness, so the past two months, every sermon, bible text, devotional, and book was directed towards action. God was clearly sending me a message to move, break the cycle and *dramatic pause* change.
At this point I was hesitant and already disappointed in myself for not changing sooner, but those feeling had to be put aside or else I’d get back into the pattern. So I decided I would find a christian book that dealt on the subject and read a chapter a day, I’m also trying to read my bible more and create a deeper relationship and trust with God. So far its going alright! I’m unclear on where God wants me to direct my action, willing to work on everyday challenges to strengthen me until He makes my mission clear.

This post wasn’t so much a devotional, but of a way to share my observations and, hopefully, show that your not alone and listen to what Gods been telling you. If you’re going through the same experience, pray, listen and ACT, don’t get discouraged if you fall but get back up again and REFUSE to wallow in what you did wrong. Just pray for God to get you back on the right path and accept His grace and strength. Trust that God won’t give up on you, so don’t give up Him, He’ll get you through this.

“Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” {‭Philippians‬ ‭1‬:‭6‬ NIV}
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” {‭Philippians‬ ‭3‬:‭13-14‬ NIV}

{Books Worth Reading}

Do Hard Things- Alex and Brett Harris

Life on the Edge- Dr. James Dobson

Resolution for Women- Pricilla Shrier

 

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