You Can’t Change by Accident
By Rick Warren
“Throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception.” Ephesians 4:22 (NLT)
Change requires making choices. It’s not enough to dream of changing. It’s not enough to desire change. In order for you to change, you will need to make a decision. You must choose to change.
Change is intentional: Are you going to be any different in six months? Are you going to be better a year from now? Are you going to be healthier, stronger, and more mature? Are you going to be happier? Are you going to be in less debt? Are you going to be more like God wants you to be?
I can tell you the answer right now: It will only happen if you choose to change, because it isn’t going to happen accidentally. You need to think ahead to where you need to be at the end of this year and where you need to be in three years, six years, and a decade from now. I want you to be better in 10 years than you are today, but you won’t be unless you choose to be.
Change requires a choice.
A lot of times we think we’re waiting on God to change us. No, you are not waiting on God. God is waiting on you! He’s waiting on you to say, “Yes, Lord, I’m willing to make these changes.”
We have to make intentional choices in order to grow. There is no growth without change, there is no change without loss, and there is no loss without pain. If you are going to grow, you will have to change, and change means you let go of some old things and grab hold of some new things.
It’s like swinging on a trapeze: The trapeze artist swings out on one bar, and then she has to reach out and grab the other bar. At some point, she’s got to let go of one to grab the other, or she’s not going to make it to the other side. If she thinks she can hold on to both, what happens? She gets stuck in the middle, and she’s going down.
Perhaps you’re stuck in the middle, and you’re going down because you haven’t let go of old patterns, old habits, and old ways of thinking. You have to let go of your old ways.
The Bible says, “Throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life” (Ephesians 4:22 NLT). In other words, let it go. Those old habits, those old hurts, those old patterns, those old sins in your life—let them go. The Bible says to throw them off and trust that God is working in you “to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” (Philippians 2:13 NIV).
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“Perhaps the most important role you can play in the life of a child is teaching them to trust God through prayer. It’s the key to living with hope.” —Pastor Rick
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Filled with thoughtful insights from Pastor Rick as well as stunning illustrations from award-winning artist, Richard Jesse Watson, this book brings the poetic scripture from the King James Version alive for readers young and old. It’s sure to become a meaningful bedtime ritual, a treasured memory, and by God’s grace, a legacy that bears good fruit for generations to come.
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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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