Choose Holiness over Happiness
By Rick Warren
“We are tempted when we are drawn away and trapped by our own evil desires. Then our evil desires conceive and give birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death” (James 1:14-15 GNT).
Today we live in an age of irresponsibility, where no one wants to admit that their problems are their own fault. We’ve all become victims. No problem we have is ever considered our fault anymore; it’s always somebody else’s problem. We blame others. We blame the government, the media, our parents, the schools, our DNA, and the environment — everything but ourselves.
The truth is that we bring most of our problems on ourselves. We just need to accept responsibility and quit blaming others. Every time we blame somebody else, we’re not admitting what the real problem is.
If you’re facing temptation right now, you’re never going to find freedom until you stop fixing the blame and start fixing the problem. Stop blaming other people! Even when other people have hurt you, it’s your reaction that’s causing the problem.
It’s amazing to me that some people even try to blame God for the messes in their lives. But God’s will never contradicts God’s Word. If God says, “Don’t do that” in the Bible, he will never tell you “yes” through a feeling. I don’t care how good the feeling is — when you listen to your feelings instead of God’s Word, you’re walking straight into a trap. One of the most common excuses I’ve heard to justify a multitude of sins is, “God wants me to be happy, and this will make me happy.”
God wants you to be happy. But God wants you to be holy more than he wants you to be happy. He wants you to obey him. You will never be totally happy when you ignore God’s will. In fact, you’re heading for destruction. The rules and principles in the Bible are not there just to make life miserable. They’re there for our own good.
The happiest people in the world are those who hang on to what God says and follow it, regardless of what their feelings say.
Talk It Over
What problems may result when we try to blame someone else?
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It doesn't matter how much you work out or how healthy you may eat, if you're not feeding and exercising your spirit… you're going to feel run down and tired – you’ll run out of gas. You’ve got to do more than just take care of your body. You’ve got to energize your spirit! And the best way to do that is with God’s Word! That’s why we’ve put together this new interactive guide called Re-Energize Your Life!
In this first-of-its-kind guide, created from Pastor Rick’s most practical teaching, you will learn everything you need to know to re-energize your life the way God intended. Step by step, you will begin a journey of restoration and renewal. It’s a hands-on guide you take at your own pace. No need to rush! In fact, we encourage you to stop and linger where you want to spend more time. You’ll benefit from biblical wisdom and learn how to apply it to your life in practical ways.
This devotional © 2017 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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