Listen to this devotional
Note: This Bible Study was inspired by The Spirituality of Jesus, Part 5: “Believing”.
What’s one thing in your character you wish you could change?
My brothers and sisters, you will face all kinds of trouble. When you do, think of it as pure joy.  Your faith will be tested. You know that when this happens it will produce in you the strength to continue.  And you must allow this strength to finish its work. Then you will be all you should be. You will have everything you need.James 1:2-4 NIRV
We all have weaknesses, sins, and challenges. Changing any one of these of significance takes consistent effort over time.
Have you ever tried to change something, but given up after a few days? When trying to change, there will always come a time when our faith is tested. It’s only when we persevere daily that we grow stronger and become who God meant us to be.
- What is something you know that you need to change?
- Have you started to change? Have you persevered to continue changing or decided to quit?
Here are three decisions you can make that will help you stick to it until the change is complete.
Pray about your change daily
It was very early in the morning and still dark. Jesus got up and left the house. He went to a place where he could be alone. There he prayed.  Simon and his friends went to look for Jesus.  When they found him, they called out, “Everyone is looking for you!” Jesus replied, “Let’s go somewhere else. I want to go to the nearby towns. I must preach there also. That is why I have come.”  So he traveled all around Galilee. He preached in their synagogues. He also drove out demons.Mark 1:35-39 NIRV
Jesus spent time praying to God at a time and place he could be free of any distractions. When he left his prayer he was so focused on his purpose and the good he was meant to do that he wasn’t even distracted by those demanding his attention.
Spending time with God in prayer is meant to help get us focused spiritually to tackle our day and live how God wants us to live.
- Where can you pray in the morning to be free of distractions?
- What change do you need to pray about making every day, in order to develop a focus on doing good just as Jesus did?
Choose to do good daily
Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.  Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.Galatians 6:7-8 NLT
Every choice we make, big or small, can be boiled down to a fleshly/selfish choice or a spiritual one. These two decisions determine the course of our days and the building of our lives.
We can think that small decisions to please ourselves instead of pleasing the Spirit don’t matter — this is how we can mock God. The truth is that our decisions to sin and be selfish cause relationships, faith, love, and opportunities to decay and die.
Making daily spiritual decisions will lead to more faith, doing good and a full life.
- What is a decision you made recently to satisfy yourself/sinful nature?
- How could you have chosen to be spiritual instead?
- What practical decision could you make daily in order to change and do good?
Resolve to never give up
So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.  Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.Galatians 6:9-10 NLT
When changing we will get tired and be tempted to quit. We must resolve with God that we will choose to pray and persevere rather than quit.
God promises that blessing will come when we keep at changing, and this sets us up to make the most of every opportunity we encounter to do good to others.
- In what area of your life or particular change are you tempted to give up?
- What decision can you make to never to give up and to keep relying on God?
When we choose to keep moving forward, learning to be spiritual in the process, we’ll experience God changing us, and moving in our lives to help others in ways we could never have realized!