Day 21: Self-Control

You have power over your mind... realize this, and you will find strength. Marcus Aurelius

If you truly want change in your life, you will have to acquire self-control. When you consider different behavior, whether you are thinking about losing weight, quitting smoking or drinking, changing your career or anything else that is significant, you are going to have to deny yourself and exercise self-control. This is one of the most difficult parts of changing your life. That's why many people will never lose significant weight, will never quit bad habits, will never invest the time and money into going in the direction of their dreams AND it is why most people will never change their lives for God. But, you are different because you really are going to change your life for God. This will require self-control. Did you think it would be easy?

I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13, NIVĀ 

Day 22: Perseverance

If your determination is fixed, I do not counsel you to despair. Few things are impossible to diligence and skill. Great works are performed not by strength, but perseverance. Samuel Johnson

Since we are now at the half-way point, it might be a good time to look at the role that perseverance plays in the goal of changing your life for God. All one has to do to realize the importance of perseverance is to consider all of our great projects that lay in the scrap pile of the half-finished. Whether it's that degree that was to transform our careers, that exercise program that was to transform our bodies, or that organizational program that was to transform our daily routines, all have met the same fate that mere good intentions always meet. But this time is different: We are not changing our lives just for ourselves, but for our spouses, our children, our friends, and especially for our Lord. Such a noble pursuit demands diligence, determination, and perseverance. Are you willing to pay that price? Then keep going!

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Galatians 6:9, NIV

Day 24: Kindness

Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see. Mark Twain

Have you seen the bumper sticker that asks, "If being a Christian was a crime, would there be enough evidence to convict you?" It's a fair question, and one that brings us to the next step in changing your life for God: Kindness. Kindness is an outward sign of who you are on the inside. It is kindness that attracts people to you and, therefore, to Christ if you are a Christian. Without kindness, one should be slow to make the claim of being a Christian, indeed, without kindness it might be best if you simply didn't tell anyone that you are a Christian. With kindness, however, you can change not only your life, but the world!

Love is kind. I Corinthians 13:4, NIV

Day 23: Godliness

True godliness does not turn men out of the world, but enables them to live better in it. William Penn

One critical area of changing your life for God is in becoming like God. Having said that, it is important to understand the attributes of God that humans can and cannot assume. For example, we cannot become like God in power, authority, honor, glory or awe. However, we can (and must) become like God in attributes such as love, compassion and purity. If we are to achieve true change for God, a vital part of that transition will be in becoming like Him in those areas that are possible for mere mortal to achieve. It is not a small thing to become godly, so we must be sure that we are up to the task. The effort needed is great, but the results will be beyond our wildest imaginations.

For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise both for the present life and the life to come. ITimothy 4:8, NIV

Day 26: The Grace of God

Without grace we are lost.

The first element of salvation is grace. Grace is not the only part of salvation, (otherwise Christ would not have had to die and there would be no such thing as Hell), but it is arguably the most important. Grace is not earned, nor is it deserved. This is important for all who would follow Christ, because there is simply no way that we deserve to be called Christians, and there is simply no way that we deserve to be saved. Yet, the fact remains that God has extended His grace so that we can be in Heaven someday. Why not take advantage of God's saving grace? It will change your life!

It is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are all God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works... Ephesians 2:8-10, NIV