“For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out” (Romans 7:18, ESV).
It’s the start of a new year and gyms all across America will see a spike in new memberships. Why? New year’s resolutions. Nearly every top ten list includes the following resolutions: getting in shape, losing weight, or quitting smoking. Unfortunately, most of these resolutions don’t last. Just wait until mid-February and you’ll have a much easier time finding a parking space at the gym.
Too often we do the same thing as we follow Jesus. We make big promises about the great things we plan to do for Him. We try to impress Him with our performance. In the process, we can forget two important truths:
- God’s love for us is dependent on His grace and not our performance. Scripture makes this very clear in Romans 5:8, “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (NIV). God’s love for us was settled by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.
- This life is not about what we can do for God but what He can do in and through us. God does not need us (see Acts 17:24,25), but He still desires to use imperfect instruments like us to accomplish His God-sized purposes.
As you enter the new year, you do not need to ask what you can do for God. The better question is this: What does God desire to accomplish in and through me this year?
Prayer: What do You desire to accomplish through me this year, Lord? I know that I cannot do anything in my own strength, but You and I together can accomplish anything! Use me, Lord. I’m ready!