Does Jesus make a difference in real life?
Because by the way that many live, it sure seems like He doesn’t. At least that’s my opinion. But am I expecting too much out of people? Am I expecting the Holy Spirit to do more than what it does?
I get that people are fallen. I sure am. And I get that people don’t act perfectly. Oh man, I don’t. Ask my husband or son or mom or dad or brother or any of those in my community. They can give you tons of examples, I’m sure. In fact, if you really do ask them, please don’t tell me about it. I think it’d just be discouraging.
But, I WANT my love for Jesus, and the Holy Spirit’s work in me, to make a real, see-able difference. I want to look a little different tomorrow than I do today. I really really do. I want to love people better. I want to be less selfish. And less judging (ha, nice post then huh?). And less of a worrier. And more generous with my time and money and energy.
But sometimes I get discouraged by the lack of growth I see in other peoples’ lives, and then I wonder if other people look at my life the same way. I certainly don’t want to be a discouragement to others. And I don’t want my life to say that the Holy Spirit isn’t into radically changing lives.
Falling back into the same old struggles. Struggling just as much with something 3 or 4 years after becoming a follower of Jesus. With no new tools of fighting. Accountability becomes patting one another on the head, week after week, saying, “it’s okay, you’ll do better next time.” REALLY?
Father, help us to be radically different. Get inside of us. I pray that this generation, my generation, me, lets you in. Help us not to play the game. We want to look really different because we’re a new creation– because of the work YOU do in us. And may we not ignore your voice or choose the easy thing. Teach us to hold one another accountable in ways that are beneficial, and not in ways that seem “nice” but are really slowly destroying us. Give us that one person, or more than that one person, who can speak real stuff into our lives without us shutting down or shutting them out. Help us to embrace restoration and help in overcoming areas that make us less whole.
How can we expect to make a difference in the world today when we can’t even work hard enough (along with the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives, of course) to change some of the old ways in us?