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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Change

Things change. Some of those changes are good. We have more and more opportunities. We have better capabilities and more knowledge to make things better, stronger, and faster. In technology it seems that as soon as we buy something, a new product is on the market with better storage and smaller packaging. Some things change and it's not good. We see more violence, more divorce, more hatred in the world.

People also change. Our looks change. Sometimes we don't want them to, and sometimes we want them to. Our attitudes change. Sometimes that's for the good, but sometimes it's for the bad. Our personalities change. Again, sometimes that's good, but sometimes it's not. Our situtations change. Things may be going along great and then - BOOM! - something happens that catches us off guard and we have a low point in life.

As Christians, we should change. But, that change should be moving us closer and closer to God. It should be change that makes it evident to those around us that we are walking with Jesus. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"

So, ask yourselves these two questions:
1. How is one "in" Christ?
2. What should this "change" be?


Romans 6:1-4 tells us the answers to these two questions.

"What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life."

Be sure to continue reading in your own Bible to the end of Romans 6, as the thought of a new and changed life continues.

So, the first answer is that we are "in" Christ when we are buried with him through baptism. Our heart already began to change when we realized that our sin was separating us from God, and when we realized that Jesus was the only way to get to the Father. "Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me," John 14:6. After baptism, we are then beginning our "new life"...just like a newborn baby!

Then the next phase of changing begins. Our sins have been washed away, but that doesn't mean that we will never sin again. The change now is that we die to sin. Dying to sin may be something that happens quickly, or it may be a slow death. In other words, it may be a sin that we battle daily and have to work hard to put it to death because its got a hold on us. But, with God's strength and the help of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38), we can change into what God wants us to be. The blood of Jesus will continue to cleanse us and make us "new" as we confess our sins to Him.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9

If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin." 1 John 1:7


Yes, the world around us changes. Everything about it and everyone around us. Hopefully, we are changing for the better every day, little by little, as we grow as Christians. But God, Our Heavenly Father never changes! "I, the Lord, do not change," Malachi 3:6. Jesus Christ, our Savior never changes! Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8

Dear God,
Thank you for never, ever changing! And, I thank you for your Son and that He never changes, either! But, God, I do ask that you will help me to change. Help me to be what you want me to be and what you know that I can be.
In Jesus' Name,
Amen

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