1 Thessalonians 5:23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (KJV)
Exodus 31:13 Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the Lord that doth sanctify you. (KJV)
Are you still trying to fix yourself?
Are you one of those people who believe you can use problem-solving skills to change? Theoretically, it seems possible. However, from a practical standpoint, though it may work for a time, you don’t have the capacity to sustain the change. The basic premise for all problem solving is to determine the problem. You can rehearse the situation and try to identify what went wrong. You can think you have come up with the reason. The real problem is sin. Don’t get bent out of shape and start to think the worse because of the word, “sin”. Here are a couple of meanings that will help you understand why sin is the problem:
- You missed the mark God set for you.
Isaiah 53:6 Like wayward sheep, we have all wandered astray. Each of us has turned from God’s paths and chosen our own way; even so, Yahweh laid the guilt of our every sin upon him. (TPT)
- You went beyond God’s set boundary or limit.
Acts 17:26 This God made us in all our diversity from one original person, allowing each culture to have its own time to develop, giving each its own place to live and thrive in its distinct ways. (The Voice TVT)
- You were going in the direction God was leading and somehow you strayed off course.
Romans 3:11-12 No one understands [no one intelligently discerns or comprehends]; no one seeks out God. 12 All have turned aside; together they have gone wrong and have become unprofitable and worthless; no one does right, not even one! (Amplified Bible, Classic Edition AMPC)
- You are now on an alternate course not going in the direction God intended for you to go.
Proverbs 14:12-13 What you think is the right road may lead to death. 13 Laughter may hide sadness. When happiness is gone, sorrow is always there. (Good News Translation GNT)
You don’t have the power to solve a sin problem. Rules can’t fix it, God sent the Ten Commandments, and the people continued to sin. You can try to employ mind over matter. You can do the twelve-step, ten-step, or however many steps programs, the problem is still there. You can even begin to “speak the word over yourself.” Paul describes the situation in Romans 7:14-25 (read below). You are just like he was, understanding what God desires, wanting to be obedient. And just like Paul, there is a problem. Will you also recognize that it is a sin issue, a part of human nature? Yes, God saved you, actually your spirit man, and translated you from darkness to light. However, salvation doesn’t exempt you from doing the wrong thing. Your soul must be saved, and that is your job. It is not something you can talk yourself into, it requires action. You must be obedient.
Philippians 2:12-13 So then, my dear ones, just as you have always obeyed [my instructions with enthusiasm], not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence, continue to work out your salvation [that is, cultivate it, bring it to full effect, actively pursue spiritual maturity] with awe-inspired fear and trembling [using serious caution and critical self-evaluation to avoid anything that might offend God or discredit the name of Christ]. 13 For it is [not your strength, but it is] God who is effectively at work in you, both to will and to work [that is, strengthening, energizing, and creating in you the longing and the ability to fulfill your purpose] for His good pleasure. (Amplified Bible AMP)
The ultimate conclusion is you can’t fix yourself. Don’t give up. You, like Paul, can pray and walk in obedience to God’s word. Then you can praise and give glory to God. He will fix you because He is Jehovah Mekaddishkem [ja-hō-va ma-kā’-dish-kim] (The LORD that Sanctifies You).
Please agree with me as I pray:
Father, I have spent many days, years even, trying to fix myself. I’ve read the self-help books and tried to apply the logic. I’ve done the problem-solving matrices. The reality is, however intelligent I am, or what courses I have taken; I don’t have the power to fix me. I want to do what You called me to do. I want to be obedient. I really do. My flesh gets in the way. I had to ask the same question Paul did, “Who can separate me from the wretched person I am?” I thank You that You are Jehovah Mekaddishkem. You are the one who sanctifies me. Only You have the power to clean me up. Place the coal on my lips and on my heart. Burn out everything that is not like You. Sanctify me holy unto You. That is the only way I can be a vessel You can use. I submit myself to You, be glorified and honored…
Ask the Lord what He wants to say to you about today’s devotional and journal His response as described here.
Romans 7:14-25 I can anticipate the response that is coming: “I know that all God’s commands are spiritual, but I’m not. Isn’t this also your experience?” Yes. I’m full of myself—after all, I’ve spent a long time in sin’s prison. What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary. 17-20 But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help! I realize that I don’t have what it takes. 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. 21-23 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. 24 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? 25 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. (The Message MSG)