Interlude: Over the past several weeks, the thought of writing a post bogged me down with doubt of my own knowledge. I would find a subject that is rather intriguing to me, but I would find myself becoming anxious to write about it. Giving myself time to remain pensive, I have decided to write another article. Writing gives me more clarity to the ideas I am trying to persuade myself and others. It keeps me responsible to working on learning more and expanding my knowledge on what I want to write about. Keeping me accountable on what my ideas are, and building a better understanding of that subject. Lastly, I do believe that this article works well with my previous post about human connection. If you haven’t checked it out, I would recommend you do. It is greatly appreciated. After reading and trying to understand my thoughts, I also enjoy feedback on what your thoughts are as well. Feel free to comment or to reach out to me if you would like to continue a conversation.
This article was inspired mainly by Paul and John’s writings in Scripture. Specifically Romans 7:14-21 that sates:
14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. 15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good.17 So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18 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. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.
21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23 but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
In this passage, you can see that Paul is struggling with this idea of growing closer to God. He can feel his sinful nature clawing at his back screaming for attention, but he is also aware of its unholiness. He strengthens his ideas and beliefs through Christ. Being prepared for the next battle will help you realize how to combat this sin. Thinking through this recently myself, I have developed a personal plan. Thinking through this plan helps me have a greater understanding of what I am thinking. Here are my techniques on how to defeat sin:
Become Aware of Yourself: If you struggle with knowing what you struggle with, there are ways you could go about this. I am going to shine briefly on one of those. The main way I think is affective is to simply think a few seconds before you speak. Try this out for a day. If you find yourself thinking selfishly, that is a red flag. Be HONEST with yourself, or you will be stuck in this phase of preparation to defeating sin. Humble yourself and know you aren’t perfect. Write down what the thought and why you thought it. This will help you logically understand your selfishness. Becoming aware of your sinful nature is the first step.
Preparing for Battle: Once you understand what you struggle with and how you struggle with it, the next step is preparing for it next time. Read scripture based off the sin you struggle with. Go out of your way to speak with someone that you know personally to ask them about advice. Asking for advice is different than accountability, but can eventually turn into a personal connection. Take time out of your day to pray and ask God to take away that sin. Prepare yourself with Scripture is the second step.
Accountability: If you truly want to prepare yourself for sinful nature, reach out to somebody close to help you battle the sin together. Again, I recommend you reading my article about Social Connections, real connections are incredibly important. Having a person you trust to keep you accountable in your struggles will ultimately lead you to becoming a better Christian morally. Create accountability is the third step.
Reflecting actions, thoughts, and ideas with Christian beliefs: This step should keep you accountable on how you live your life. Every action, thought, and idea that is in your life, should be reflected toward your Christian beliefs. For example, if you’re struggling with vainglory behavior, then you should be reflecting on how you behave in public. Is your behavior righteous to God, or are you looking for self-righteousness? Are you finding security in others or in God? Are you looking for instant gratification though materialistic entities or long-term gratification though Christ? Are you loving others because you want to be loved or loving others because you love God? Reflect actions, thoughts, and ideas to Christian beliefs is the final step.
These are serious questions that people including myself struggle with daily. If our focus on this earth is just selfish ambition, then how are we ultimately supposed to grow in greater relationship with Christ Jesus. Romans 3:23-24 states: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
For ALL have sinned… but we have redemption though Christ. This is a daily battle for everyone. I believe that if we work through these techniques daily, we will be more successful at becoming closer to Christ. Again, union with God is the ultimate goal of Christianity. Learn to adapt your emotions, thoughts, and ideas to a Christian ideology.
The next time you are battling sin, I would encourage you to remember that battling this sin now and having faith in Christ, is complemented with great joy for eternity.