Do you believe God or do you just not want to change?
By Rick Warren
— January 23, 2011
We should no longer be slaves to sin—because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. Romans 6:6–7 (NIV)
"You are free, no longer a slave to unhealthy choices. You can choose to let God transform your life and be confident that he will."
There’s an amusing story of a businessman who, at the end of a long day of travel, climbs into bed at a hotel. As he begins to nod off, he feels something crawling up his legs.
Leaping up and fumbling with the light, he throws back the sheets to discover the bed is full of bugs.
Changing rooms is not enough to satisfy the man’s disgust. When he gets home, he writes a letter of complaint to the hotel’s corporate headquarters.
Weeks later, he receives a reply directly from the president of the company:
“We are absolutely appalled that a man of your position and reputation should have had such an experience in one of our hotels. We are deeply embarrassed, and we assure you that we are working diligently to correct this problem. It will never happen again.”
As he reads the reply, the businessman feels great! The hotel management has heard him; they’re committed to making a change; and now every customer will benefit from his initiative.
But when he folds the letter back into the envelope, a small Post-It note falls to the floor. Picking it up, the man sees in a hand-written scrawl, “Send this guy the bug letter.”
This week Pastor Rick showed me I’ve been sending “bug letters” to God. In other words, I’ve developed some standard responses related to God’s commands and directions.
It’s easy to say I’ll get serious about my health, to say I’ll press on to God’s goals, to say I’ll make the changes necessary to follow Jesus toward my destiny, but the hard part is actually following through on those commitments.
Are you with me here? We tell God we can’t change, but what we really mean is we won’t take our health seriously, we won’t stop overeating, we won’t follow Jesus toward our destiny. So we pull out our form letters – our standard responses that allow us to appear sincere when, in truth, we have no intention of changing.
Do you believe God can’t change you or do you just not want to change? You are free, no longer a slave to unhealthy choices. You can choose to let God transform your life and be confident that he will.
This devotional is by Jon Walker, editor of the Daily Hope Devotionals and author of Costly Grace: A Contemporary View of Bonhoeffer's ‘The Cost of Discipleship.’