The internet is buzzing with articles on how to be a better you. "Seven steps to becoming more productive - buy my book", "Be the best you - subscribe here." Emphasis: YOU. Self-help gurus are making big bucks because most people will buy into anything that promises to make them better. "Better" being defined by the world and usually meaning: thin, rich and beautiful.
Facebook is full of muscle-bound health gurus with great marketing plans. "Lose 20 pounds in a month . . . kiss cancer good-bye with my new eating program . . . seven deadly things you should never eat - buy my book . . ." I'll admit I've clicked. We know diets don't work - but theirs is not a diet . . . click.
John the Baptist was asked "What shall we do?" The people wanted to be better, more pleasing to God. As the people pressed him for answers John got to the key for lasting change: "I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire" (Luke 3:16)
Jesus didn't come to change our minds - He came to change our nature.
There's a huge difference between a change of mind and a change of nature. The key to a true change is not to focus on ourselves - but to focus on Jesus. That's where the change comes from.
"But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name (John 1:12).
The word "power" means: the right, privilege, capacity and freedom.
"Become" means: to arise, be assembled, cause to be, be finished, fulfilled, ordained and married.
Think about it - we have the capacity to arise, to be finished . . . and even fulfilled!
It's all in Christ. He is the answer. He gives a a new nature so we desire to bring Him glory in every area of our lives.
It's our identity in Christ that changes our lives.
I've struggled with weight my whole life. I've tried every kind of diet and it's ALWAYS temporary change. The key is a change of desire - God can change our appetites. That's a part of a change of nature. Our deliverance is not having a white-knuckled grip on a particular eating plan . . .it's changing the desires of the flesh to seek to bring God glory in all areas of my life. This has brought the most lasting change in my life. Only the Holy Spirit can change us on a level that will give us lasting behavior changes.
Here's a healthy prescription for change:
1. Be born again. John 3:16.
2. Be baptized with the Holy Spirit Luke 3:16
3. Chose a book of the Bible and read it. Repeat 20 times.
4. Then chose another book of the Bible, and do the same.
You'll be amazed.