Sunday, September 1, 2013

Week 1: How to Change

I wanted to host this group, not because I'm an overachieving Christian.  Farthest from it.  In fact, each night I lay down my head I have to ask God over and over to give me a retry tomorrow.  A mulligan.  I can do this, tomorrow I will reach this goal with pure determination and will power.  I will change my life, surely all the self help books I've invested in can get me there.  Funny how I always end up back in that corner on my knees. Asking for forgiveness, feeling more alone than ever.  Realizing each day the pit, the hole I'm digging gets me farther and farther away from the person I was made to be.

So when this opportunity came up, I knew this was my calling.  I had such an amazing prayer experience last month that has absolutely started the transformation.  Has the work been finished, not a chance --just begun.  Though I see progress. Imperfect progress.  Yet I still have those nagging questions that linger.  What does it take for real life change.  Total transformation to occur. A God Chisel.  For me to hold a different posture.  I don't know the answers yet. That's where you come in.  I pray you walk with me. Lets find the answers together.

Two things need to happen for real life change.  Accountability.  We must find authentic godly relationships in our lives to witness progress and pray diligently for all the tools we need.  Also to walk knowing the outside is not where it begins.  Painting your face up with the newest cosmetic gimmicks, flashing your zoom whitened teeth a little more will not fill the void and heavy burdens that we bear. No not even a new pair of Jimmy Choo's.  Gasp I know. Beauty and real change come from within.  In fact during this six weeks, I challenge all of us even the most vain to set that aside and let God work. Find your security in the one above, not the one in the magazine.

"It's better to have a partner than go it alone. Share the work, share the wealth.  And if one falls down, the other helps, but if there's no one to help, tough!  Two in a bed warm each other. Alone, you shiver all night. By yourself you're unprotected. With a friend you can face the worst.  Can you round up a third?  A three-stranded rope isn't easily snapped. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 Message)

"When someone becomes a Christian, he becomes a brand new person inside.  He is not the same anymore.  A new life has begun!"  (2 Corinthians 5:17 TLB)

Each day I will give a talking point for you to think about and by the Friday of each week.  I hope you have your answers for the weeks questions.  I would love for you to keep a notebook of the questions and answers.  I want you to pray on them. Be completely authentic in your struggles.  Say them out loud to your God.  Ask for exactly what you want each day, each week.  I also pray you share the answers with me.  I would love to pray for you and more importantly celebrate the new you at the end of our journey.

Discussion Questions:

1. What are some positive changes you have seen in your life? What did you do to bring about change?

2. We have all found ourselves isolated at some time.  Five reasons we often walk alone is: naivety, temperament, fear, past experiences, and busyness. Which reason(s) can you relate to the most? What can you do to overcome it?

3. What would you want those who know you best (family, friends, associates, etc.) to say about you when your life is over, and what would have to change in your life to make that reality?

Tomorrow I will start giving you scripture and insight to help you change.  Maybe touch the places we spoke about or the places that you find yourself hurting or struggling with. Romans 7:15 states: I don't understand myself at all, for I really want to do what is right, but I don't do it. I do the very thing I hate.   Isn't this oh so true, in turn we hate ourselves.  We hate the person we see in the mirror.  The very things we hate becomes our identity. We feel hopeless.  We become defensive when love ones point it out or even worse our holy spirit speaks to us within.  We become slaves and in bondage. We begin to slowly lose our lives.

Today lets get our lives back, find freedom.  Love ourselves, more importantly love the one who knows you best.  Who wants to rescue you, free you from bondage.  The one who wants to set you free.

Until tomorrow.....

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