I remember when I became a Christian some 23 years ago. Some “things of the world” such as swearing and drinking excessively stopped straight away. But many things I still struggle with and are much more ingrained. This passage is a good reminder of three things as I continue this struggle:
- How easy it is to go along with the rest of the world and before I know it, I’ve lost touch with God. As such, I need to be reading His Word regularly and allowing myself to be shaped by it, not the world.
- The need to be hard-lined with anything that prevents me from growing in godliness. Note Paul’s strong words in v22 “You must get rid of your old way of life”
- The importance of having healthy relationships with others. Note that the sins Paul mentions in v25-29 (lying, swearing, uncontrolled anger, and stealing) damage relationships and hurt others.
And like most of Paul’s letters, they contain words that we can turn into prayers to help us pray positively. In this case, about what is likely the root cause of all our sins – our heart.
Prayer – Lord, I’m sorry for grieving you and breaking your heart when I sin. Please forgive me. Thank you for the gift of your Holy Spirit. Please renew me from the inside out. Work yourself into my conduct and may your character be reproduced in me in all I think, say, and do today.