Have you ever given much thought to why you do certain things certain ways? I learned to tie my shoes around age six or seven and remember something about a rabbit going around a log—or maybe it jumped a stump. Yet, as a sixth grader I sat in Sunday School and Ms. Sherry taught us the official way to tie shoes. It was very different than the way I learned. She had us make two big loops and tie them together. I couldn’t seem to make that second loop without losing the first loop. It was easy for her, but I struggled with since my mind and body had already learned how to tie my shoes in that “unofficial,” probably fiendish, way. I should have questioned the legitimacy of her claim about the “official” way to tie shoes, but I was too busy dreaming about a life wearing shoes without strings.
Sometimes, we need a dose of self-evaluation. Perhaps we need to consider why we do things the way we do. Certainly, our families and traditions have a big influence over us. Just because we do things the way we’ve been taught doesn’t mean that’s the best way to do them. Thomas Edison, famed inventor who allows us to work well into the night, famously stated, “If there’s a better way to do it…find it.” This search for improvement, for advancement, for enhancement leads us out of a life of complacency and toward a life of triumph.
In Christ we have victory—victory over those strongholds and over those giants in our lives. Yet victory isn’t won by idly laying and waiting. Victory is active and engaging. Moses confronted the Pharaoh, Joshua invaded Canaan and walked around Jericho’s walls some thirteen times, David carried the slingshot and five stones to face Goliath, Jesus fasted in the desert and carried the cross, and Paul endured hardships and a shipwreck to spread the word of God.
Surely, we stumble and we fail. When we find ourselves continuing to lose the same battles to sin or find ourselves giving into the same temptations again and again, then we need to come up with another strategy. The same routines and regimens we enact just aren’t getting the results we hope to see, so it does us no good to continue to do the same old thing. Perhaps it’s time to evaluate our behavior and alter our actions so that we begin to see victory in our lives. It may be quite a struggle at first; we may have to unlearn bad behaviors and teach our bodies new movements. But, if we make the needed changes, we will find the sweet victory of Jesus Christ and realize that there is a better life awaiting us.
Praise God for His faithfulness and goodness! Don’t try to do everything on your own. If this is your strategy and you haven’t allowed Christ to go to battle with you, why not invite Him to replace some of your habits and patterns with His wisdom and guidance. You will certainly be more equipped to withstand temptation.
So, feel free to evaluate yourself. Take an honest look at where you need to improve and don’t be afraid to try something new!