The Challenge of Change
Message Summary: There are barriers we must get over if we want change in our lives.
We want things to happen fast and easy. However, change is harder than we think, and change takes longer than we think. We often are worried about the result, and God is worried about me. He is at work in our lives and changing us from within while we wait on Him. Studies show that making a small change over a period of time yields the biggest results. Sadly, we often tell ourselves, “I can’t do ALL things; therefore, I won’t do any.” Toby reminds us that Jesus operates like a crockpot. Like the crockpot takes a long time to cook the best piece of meat, it may take us a long time to see the result we desire but God is working in us for our good and his glory. Another insightful analogy Toby used is how we want to deal with the fruit (the outcome, tangible results) while God wants to deal with the root (our minds).
I put it all on myself. Waiting on the Lord is not a passive act. We need to do our part. Pray, analyze what you are thinking. Ask what needs to change in your life. As parents, don’t get caught up in the behavior, but rather focus on what your kids are thinking. We may have grown up with our parents telling us, “Don’t be a baby.” Now, many parents tell their kids, “Aww, you poor baby.” This type of thinking affects how we react to the hard stuff. We are not victims. Remember, you are a child of God, and you can do hard things. Believe you are who God says you are. Believe for miracles, do your part, act like it is true, and God will meet you there.
1. In John 5, we learn of the place where all people with disabilities and mental illnesses were sent for healing. Unfortunately, many could never get in or escape. What would it feel like to be stuck in this place?
2. Are you willing to pay the price for change?
3. Do you want to get well?
4. How can you make a difference in your kids or other people’s lives by changing the way you think?
5. What change can you do to start growing closer to the person God created you to be?
John 5: 1-8 – Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate of pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie-the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. One who was there had been invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?” “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Getup! Pick up your mat and walk.
Romans 12:2 – Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Romans 8:28 – And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.