"If we claim that we're free of sin, we're only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense. On the other hand, if we admit our sins—make a clean breast of them—he won't let us down; he'll be true to himself. He'll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing. If we claim that we've never sinned, we out-and-out contradict God—make a liar out of him. A claim like that only shows our ignorance of God." 1 John 1:8-10 MSG
Thoughts for Today
Overcoming life-controlling problems is a process. It is important to acknowledge that you have a problem and come to Jesus for help. Your next step should be to get real—with yourself and with God.
Take an inventory of your life. Think about the ways you have been denying the reality of your condition. Have you been isolating yourself? Keeping your struggle a secret? Making light of it or rationalizing that it is OK?
Have you blamed other people and circumstances for your problem instead of accepting responsibility? Perhaps you point your finger at your parents or spouse or friends. Maybe you blame a job loss or even your childhood.
Consider this …
Think about the ways your behavior has affected other people. Have you lost their respect and confidence? Are you experiencing strained relationships or problems with your children?
Determine to be honest about your problem and to accept responsibility for your behavior. Repent for what you've done and turn to Jesus for the hope that only he can give. Change won't be easy. And you may suffer natural consequences of past failures. But begin to focus on your new hope in Christ. He will not disappoint you in your time of personal searching and change.
Father, forgive me for blaming people and circumstances for my behavior. I'm ready to accept responsibility for my situation. Forgive me for my sin. I thank you for helping me through this time of change. In Jesus' name …
These thoughts were drawn from …Stepping into Freedom: A Christ-Centered Twelve-Step Program by Jimmy Ray Lee, D.Min. This twelve-step program is suggested for use in support groups, recovery groups and home groups. It offers help for anyone struggling with a life-controlling problem like drug addiction, alcoholism, sexual addiction, gambling or workaholism. Note: This curriculum was written especially for small groups and we encourage people to use it that way. However, it can also be used effectively as a personal study for individuals or couples.
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