I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions this year, mostly because I rarely keep them. But more than making a resolution, I decided to make a perspective change.
I’m changing my perspective on the way I live each minute. Following the prodding I first received when I began reading Jesus Calling by Sarah Young, I’ve decided to live in God’s presence at all times.
This is a constant thing–to live each moment in the presence of my Lord.
I’ll tell you what it’s done for me so far–it’s convicted me over the sinfulness in my life.
I struggle with sinfulness.
I think I’m in pretty good company with this. Martin Luther, the father of the Protestant Reformation, struggled with his own sinfulness. It was the notion that he could never work hard enough or self-flagellate enough to be worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven. It’s that idea–the need for grace–that pushed him to dig deeper within the scriptures to eventually challenge the Catholic church on the idea of justification by faith.
Now that I’ve given you a mini history lesson, let me get back to my point.
No matter what I do, I’ll never be able to completely eradicate sin in my life. There was only One who never sinned, and clearly, I’m not Him.
I could use the excuse that sin is inherent–I can’t avoid it.
Someone who questions the existence of original sin has never spent any time around a toddler. You don’t have to teach a toddler how to pitch a fit or disobey, or how to sneak a cookie, or throw something at a sibling. You don’t have to teach a toddler how to use anger and manipulation to try to get what they want, nor do you have to teach them those ugly little looks they sometimes give. They are born knowing how to do these things, and will employ them, to the best of their abilities, unless someone teaches them otherwise.
But I can’t use original sin as my excuse, at least not all the time.
Maybe I can get away with it for those knee-jerk reaction sins. The anger I have when someone says something rude. Or the jealousy that floods me when someone gets something I want. Maybe I can blame my inherent will to sin for these.
But what about the sins that I choose? Yes, choose. I know better, yet sometimes I choose to sin. I choose to disobey what I know to be right. I choose to ignore the voice of God, even when I’ve asked him to speak to me. I choose to sin.
And it’s a choice that separates me from the blessings of my God, from the joy of living daily in His presence.
Come Thou Fount is one of my favorite hymns. There’s one phrase in that song that speaks to me so loudly, I almost feel as if it was written just for me.
Prone to wander, Lord I feel it. Prone to leave the God I love. Here’s my heart, Lord, take and seal it. Seal it for thy courts above.
This phrase is more than just a verse in a song to me. It’s a prayer. I’m asking God to seal my heart as I live in his presence– to tune my heart to sing his grace so that there’s no cause to sing anything else.
I can’t destroy the sin in my life–that will be done someday when evil is vanquished. I’ll never be perfect. But I can refocus my life so that my knee-jerk reactions are glorifying to God and my choices become clear benefits to the Kingdom of Heaven.
And daily I will remain immensely grateful for forgiveness and redemption as I trod the road of disciple.
Applying the concept of living moment by moment in God’s presence has already made me less prone to wander.
Share with me: How are you doing on your New Year’s resolutions so far? How many did you make? How many have you kept and how many have you ditched already?