Newsflash. Jesus killed death, demolished it. Obliterated it! Lent brings us to this awesome, inevitable end. One prophesied in the Bible and one that allows you and me to live freely. So then why are we walking around with these heavy loads, acting as though sin runs out lives?
Which means if you are down on yourself today with a laundry list of all what sin has done to you, you need to take a breath for a hard truth.
You are doing this, no one else.
Sin doesn’t own you, Jesus made that possible. So, if sin doesn’t own you, that means you can live life differently than 99% of the planet.
Sounds good, right? Here’s how.
Stop Running Sin’s Errands
If someone doesn’t run your life, why are you doing things for them? You feel some sense of compulsion, right? Some misplaced obligation. But just like a bad ex-boyfriend, sin will continually ask you to do things that you know in your heart you should not, cannot be doing any longer. So, what will it take for you to turn away, and stop running its errands? Every time sin asks you to pick something up, check out a website, shovel in those brownies, take a moment and remind yourself who is doing the asking. Imagine it’s your ex asking and let that shock you into a hard pause. Resist being told what to do by sin is the first step to living life freely.
Remind Yourself Who is in Control
You have free will, you have choices—but you do not have control. God does. This is nice because you are off the hook in some regards. You don’t need to be strong all on your own, because you aren’t in control. When we say “Jesus take the wheel” what that means is less about your actions and more about what you FEEL responsible for. For me, knowing I’m not responsible for conquering sin, death and all the evil in the world (and in me) makes me feel amazing. It means I can just go about my day, making choices, yes but not having to wage these epic battles within myself. Once you realize you aren’t in control, you don’t necessarily turn the wheel over in the car, but you take your foot off the accelerator. You can relax and cruise.
You are already visualizing your ex when sin comes knocking, and recognizing the battle is already won, but what do you do when the impulse just feels too quick for you? Sometimes I notice I’m reacting and going through the motions of sin before I’ve even THOUGHT about it. But you can nip this in the bud by practicing a little mindfulness. By creating space in your reactions to things, you hit the pause button. You don’t bolt into action, give someone a piece of your mind, etc, etc. You just experience what’s going on, you accept, in other words. This is a powerful spiritual practice that’s as potent as it is difficult to capture. But it can be done! What’s more, you have so many opportunities throughout the day to practice it. I can say without hesitation that this is possibly been one of the best methods to transform my life, and it’s so very simple! Take five seconds and pause before speaking. Or take three deep breaths when you feel temptation knocking. Whatever your system, it’s key to break out of those hard-wired responses that many people operate on the daily.
Start showing sin who’s boss with these three simple (and yet, incredibly hard) steps. Feel like you keep messing up? Good! More opportunities to see your growth, a thousand more potential moments to create change in your life. One step at a time.
"Imagine it's your ex asking"…oh snap! I'm definitely going to try that! Great ideas here and just what I needed to hear today. As usual! Thank you Holy Spirit