Adapted from an article by David Brandt Berg
Many people resolve to do this or that, change this or that, break a bad habit, or start a new one. Sometimes it works; often it doesn’t. Is that because so many of us are like the bird in the following story?
A man once owned an eagle, and for many years kept him chained to a stake. Every day the eagle walked around and around that stake, and over time wore a rut in the ground. When the eagle was getting old, his master felt sorry for him and decided to set him free. So he took the metal ring off the eagle’s foot, lifted the eagle from the ground, and tossed him into the air. He was free—but he had forgotten how to fly! He flip-flopped to the ground, walked back over to his old rut, and started walking in circles like he had for years. No chain and shackle held him, just the habit!
There is a saying: “The chains of bad habits are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken”—and that would be true if it weren’t for the Lord and His power. It’s not possible for you to change yourself, but it’s possible for God to change you by the miracle-working power of His Spirit. He’ll do things you can’t do!
You may have to put a great deal of your own will to the transformation process as well, but with God’s strength and His intervention, you’ll find you have more resolve, determination, and ability to change than you ever thought possible. He said, “Whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive” (Matthew 21:22).
This is what it means to “become a new creature in Christ Jesus” (2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV). Jesus coming into your life not only renews and purifies and regenerates your spirit, but it also renews your mind, literally breaking old connections and reflexes and gradually rebuilding it and rewiring it into a whole new computer system with a different outlook on life and a new way of looking at the world, with new reactions to nearly everything around you.
But it’s impossible for you to make this change yourself. If you want this change, it’s necessary for you to ask Jesus to help. Some changes are instantaneous, others take awhile.—But if you ask Him for help and do your part, you’ll be changed, because Jesus changes people!
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