Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. Colossians 3:2-3 NLT
In Christ it is possible to find the means to change. What’s the purpose of the fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22-23) if we can’t change and become more Christ-like? Time and again I have discovered there are three resistors to effective change: perception, habits and attitudes.
For many years I knew I was significantly overweight. I knew it, but failed to acknowledge it. Consequently, I was unable to own it as an issue. Then, remarried and working with Jayne on creating a diet that supported her with her health condition, plus an awareness I needed to lose weight as I entered the so-called third age, I chose to address my weight. I had to break habits and change attitudes. My perception only came into play once I lost weight, more than 40 pounds. Looking at clothes that now drowned me I realised just how overweight I’d been.
Perception is a powerful source of control. Many people had commented upon my weight, but I had not taken any of it seriously or saw myself as fat. Without deciding I was overweight and needed to address the issue, I could neither decide to change nor embrace the challenge such a decision demanded. It was then I needed to deal with the habits. Alcohol, late-night snacks, sugar, processed foods and most carbs were ditched. It wasn’t easy and I discovered what it meant to draw upon the fruit of self-control, a God-given capacity to take control over my behaviours. Temptation didn’t disappear, and I didn’t always make the best choices, yet I experienced improvement in my ability to do what I desire; I changed.
My story is not your story. Yet, we share the same fruit of the Spirit. We also need to address perception, habits and attitudes. You can realise change in your life, but only as you determine what it is you want to do, and apply yourself to making that change.
What changes do you want to see?
I ask for perception to see the true reality of my life and situation. Help me address habits and attitudes that need to change. May the fruit of your Spirit be ever more evident in my life.