Pain, but Still No Gain

Doesn’t it say in the Bible somewhere that once we give our lives to Jesus, we become a new creation? That the old has gone, and the new has come? I always thought, YES, now I’ll have power to say no to sin, I’ll be able to do right in everything I do, and I won’t have to experience any more consequences from my wrong doings.

Yet, as I grew older through the years, I found that wasn’t the case at all. Rather, it seemed like the temptations got bigger and badder. And the ability to say no to sin got weaker. Where’s that new creation that was promised, huh Jesus? We try and try to change, to be better, to be like Christ. We don’t forgive ourselves, even our Heavenly Father already has. It seems like we’re trapped in this never-ending cycle of sin, feel bad, repent, “okay, I got it this time”, fail. And again and again.

Anybody else have that feeling?

I take great comfort in the fact that Paul felt exactly the same way and even wrote about it.

“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do ,but what I hate I do…For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do- this I keep on doing.” Romans 7:15b,18-19.

I think he was pulling his hair out over this because he almost made it into a tongue twister. I mean, look at the repetitiveness of it. But I think that shows even more with how he struggled and how much he wanted to be right with God.

But in the end, he comes to this revelation and offers up hope in this endless cycle of feeling trapped by our guilt and sin. He writes,

“What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God- through Jesus Christ our Lord!…Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.” Romans 7:24-25a; 8:1-2.

In our times of feeling guilt and without worth, let us be reminded that we are not condemned by the Father because through Jesus, we have been set free. Our bodies are not yet free from the confines of this sinful human flesh, but our hearts and minds are free. Remember this, despite everything, He loves us so, so much. Let us never forget that.