Character Doesn’t Change Overnight—And Here’s Why

Character Doesn’t Change Overnight—And Here’s WhyEver wonder why God forgives a person who puts their faith in Him and wipes their slate clean but doesn’t instantly change their character?

God doesn’t automatically transform a person’s character because He expects them to do the demanding work it takes to follow Christ.

The life of a follower of Christ is often depicted in the Bible as a field to cultivate:

Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love. Plow up the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you. — Hosea 10:12, NLT

Likewise, a follower of Christ must work hard to grow spiritually and become fruitful. (more…)

Self-Control is a Muscle You Must Exercise

Self-Control is a Muscle You Must ExerciseSelf-control is defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as “restraint exercised over one’s impulses, emotions, or desires.”

But self-control doesn’t come naturally for most people. It can be difficult not to give in to triggers and temptations. Old habits die hard; healthy habits take work. It’s easy to get through the end of a hard day and feel entitled to spend the evenings escaping by turning to overeating, watching porn, or on the couch binge-watching television or playing video games.

Where does self-control come from? The Bible teaches that self-control comes from two things.

First, it’s a fruit of the Spirit. Galatians 5:22-23 (NLT) says, “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!” (more…)

Our Failures Reveal Our Powerlessness and Need for God

Our Failures Reveal Our Powerlessness and Need for GodLife Recovery Step One says, “We admitted that we were powerless over our dependencies and that our lives had become unmanageable.”

In Step One, one must realize they cannot meet God’s standards. Many addicts who are starting recovery think they can do everything in their own strength, but trying to do it all without any help is not the solution. Why? Because no one can do it all. Everyone falls short—no one is perfect. So, God gave the law as a measuring stick to reveal that no one can meet God’s holy and perfect standards.

The apostle Paul wrote: (more…)

How to Use The Life Recovery Bible

How to Use The Life Recovery BibleAs Psalm 119:105 says, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path” (NLT), The Life Recovery Bible has been used as a path for countless individuals seeking recovery. In 1991, Tyndale House Publishers partnered with Steve Arterburn and Dr. Dave Stoop to create a study Bible that would encourage fellow strugglers to connect with the Bible. As a result, The Life Recovery Bible was born; since then, it has become the number one selling recovery Bible. And millions of those who’ve used this Bible have seen their lives transformed.

Want to start reading The Life Recovery Bible? If so, here are some helpful tips. (more…)

What Does It Look Like to Be Crucified with Christ?

What Does It Look Like to Be Crucified with Christ?When the light of God’s truth shines on one’s weakness and failure, one sees the futility of self-righteousness and realizes that the only sensible response is to stop pretending things aren’t so bad. They are! Spiritual renewal and transformation require that one repents, which means to acknowledge and turn from their sins. But one cannot truly repent until one sees themselves as flawed, unholy, and needing redemption and complete reformation.

To recover from addiction or an unhealthy habit, one must turn their will and life over to God. This means they must also turn their shortcomings, losses, failures, fears, and needs over to Him. Life Recovery Step Three says, “We made a decision to turn our wills and our lives over to the care of God.”

Truth is, however, rarely does someone surrender their will and life over to God when their life is problem free. (more…)

Here’s Why Love is a Choice—Not a Feeling

Here’s Why Love is a Choice—Not a FeelingThis is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has on one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. – John 15:12-13

What is love?

Theologians, musicians, writers, and even Hollywood directors, have attempted to define, explain, and quantify love throughout history. But there has yet to be a consensus reached so far.

When it comes down to it, however, love is a choice.

A person can choose to act lovingly toward others or selfishly toward them. There is no mistaking that the foundation of genuine love is not feelings that change from day to day, from week to week, and sometimes even from moment to moment. There is no doubt that true love requires effort because it is a decision—one must be willing to do their part to build a lasting relationship. (more…)