November 6, 2007 - 'I can't like it'


‘I can’t like it’
By Jon Walker

We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. (Romans 6:6b-7 NLT)

When my oldest son was two years old, he’d sometimes turn away from the food we’d places in front of him, making a face and saying, “I can’t like it.” Of course, he was really trying to say that he didn’t like it, but he was just a beginner at the English language.

“I can’t like it” implied that my son didn’t have a choice, as if he’d been pre-programmed to not like something, no matter how hard he tried.

This was pretty cute coming from a 2-year-old; but I started wondering how often I say that to God. When I read one of his commands, or sense he’s leading me in a certain direction, do I sometimes say, “Sorry, Lord, I can’t do that because I can’t like it … and, therefore, I can’t do it!’’

Yet what I really mean by “I can’t do it” is “I won’t do it.”

Are you with me here? We tell God we can’t change; we can’t handle a difficult situation; we can’t abandon a bad habit; we can’t learn to love that person who has the unique ability to push all our buttons every time, all the time.

Yet, if we’re honest with God and ourselves, we really mean we won’t control our anger; we won’t stop overeating; we won’t love our wives like Christ loved the Church; we won’t respect our husbands as the Bible directs; we won’t love our neighbors as we love ourselves.

We act as if we have no choice, when the truth is we have been set free to make the right choices before God and been empowered to make the right choice by the Holy Spirit present and active in our lives.

In Romans, Paul teaches us that we do not have to sin – we are free to walk in godly obedience, free to live the life God intended us to live.

You can be encouraged to know that the spirit of God within you is constantly at work, changing you for God’s glory and pleasure. Yes, there’s an enemy working against you, but “greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4b NAS)

You are free and enabled to walk into maturity with Christ.

What now?

· No longer a slave – You are no longer a slave to sin. You have a choice; you can say no to sin, and the Holy Spirit within you provides the strength to make the choice.

· Sin has no power over you – Sin has no power over you, except the power you give to it. Each time you say no to sin, it’s power is weakened even more, and God’s power in your life is multiplied.

· God wants you to succeed – God doesn’t expect you to be perfect; he knows you can’t be and that’s why he set up a plan to bring you back home. Jesus died for our sins, but he also was resurrected, breaking the power of sin and death. God wants you to succeed: Through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, he broke the power of sin and death, by sending the Holy Spirit, he’s empowered you to say no to sin.

· I believe; help my unbelief – Ask God to turn your “I can’t” and “I won’t” into “Yes, Lord, I will.”

© 2007 Jon Walker. All rights reserved