< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: God Can Change Your Life

Friday, August 15, 2008

God Can Change Your Life

I just did a lesson on the book God Can Change Your Life by Rick Warren. I think what’s written below is so important to understand!

Jesus Christ offers us the power we need to become what He wants us to be. And He does it by giving us the Fruits of the Spirit.

So first we have to know Christ, which is the most important thing in life, and then experience the power of His resurrection. The Bible describes resurrection power as the power to cancel our past, the power to conquer our problems and the power to change our personality.

Think about what it means to cancel our past. All of our failures, mistakes, sins and regrets. Most people have trouble letting go of the stupid or bad things they’ve done in the past. Or other people or the consequences from those mistakes won’t let them!

So as humans we have a hard time understanding how God can “forget” our sins. But, He does. If we confess them and turn from them His forgiveness wipes them out completely. We’re the ones who keep digging them up and stewing over them again. And doing that short-circuits the power God offers us so it limits our future. We spend all our time saying, “I blew it – I’ll be paying for that the rest of my life”. Well, if that’s the way we think, we will be paying for it the rest of our life!

But, it’s not God who says that. God wipes the slate clean. He allows us a fresh start – a second chance, a new beginning. In Jeremiah 31:34 God said to the Israelites that He “will remember their sins no more.” How can that be? How can the God who created the universe “forget”? Because He chooses to! He chooses to forget our wrongs, our mistakes and our failures.

When we come to Him, admit our sins and ask Him to forgive us He cancels our past. We are new people. And He does it because of Jesus, not us. When we know that, we can better understand. It’s not about us. It’s nothing we do or don’t do, deserve or don’t deserve. God said that His Son’s dying on the cross for our sins is enough. If we believe that, we’re saved.

When Jesus died He said, “It is finished” He paid the price in full for every sin we have ever committed and Romans 8:1 tells us “Therefore there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”. We don’t need to keep crucifying ourselves over our past because Jesus was crucified for all of us. When we can get a grip on that and start living without digging up our past mistakes – God’s power will surge through our lives.

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