Misunderstanding the grace of God...
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I encourage you to read Acts 8:9-25
Simon the sorcerer may not have really understood what it meant to follow Jesus when he met the disciples. As a man coming from a history of performing satanic tricks and using occult practices, witnessing the Disciples as they prayed for the Holy Spirit to enter the people amazed this man. Though he believed the gospel that they preached, he did not understand. Thinking he could purchase the ability to posses the same power, he offered money to the disciples as compensation.
Isn’t it funny how we can make the same mistake? Over and over we fail to understand that the gift of salvation and the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives cannot be bought. We cannot purchase our freedom with money or good deeds. We cannot live good enough or punish ourselves enough to somehow deserve a better ending to this life or the power to change other lives with our own efforts.
Though Simon’s desire was for power, and some of us may be the same, he failed to see that the gift of God was eternal life and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. He could not buy it. He, in fact, was putting down the importance of the cross and our Lord’s sacrifice by even suggesting such a thing. It proved that his heart was not right and he was focused on personal gain instead of spreading the gospel and gaining souls for Christ.
Though it’s easy to carry our old habits and ways of thinking into a new life with Christ as our center, we need to shed those things like old skin and start fresh with Jesus, thinking all things according to His will. If our thoughts and desires are selfish, than we need to remove ourselves from our thoughts and ask the Lord how we should continue with His desires instead.
...How do I do that?
1. Pray for salvation
If you haven’t accepted Christ as your Lord and Savior, this is the first step and you cannot continue on your path asa christian until you have done so.
2. Let go of the old you
Once you have put your faith and trust in God, it’s time to give Him your old life and start a new one. Remove the things in your life that are not pleasing to Him and take on a new direction.
How do I do that?
If there are habits you have or people in your life that do not please God, it’s time to remove them. It doesn’t mean you can no longe speak to anyone who isn’t saved, but you need to be aware how you spend time with them. Don’t let them influence you to be in situations that don’t glorify the Lord. If you used to watch movies, read books, collect things or participate in things that go against the Bible, this things need to be removed form your life.
Think of it like weeding a garden. Remove the weeds from the flower beds so they don’t choke out the flowers or keep them from growing. When we remove selfish desires from our lives, God replaces them with His desires for us and we can grow in our faith and relationship with Him.