“They” say that the definition of madness is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Exactly who are “they” ? I’m not sure, but I expect that “they” are the same people who keep putting bills in my mailbox and making my cable go out. Probably also the same people who applied oil to Tony Romo’s hands against the Seahawks last Saturday night. “they” got that one wrong. I’m a Seahawks fan.
Anyway, I heard Nancy Pelosi, politician, today stating that she did not support president Bush’s plan to boost troop numbers in Iraq because there was no real change in strategy. “More of the same” she said would produce “more of the same” results.
Christians are guillty of this approach to sanctification. Particularly of pitting the flesh against itself and expecting reform. Constant defeat with sin is a sure sign that this is going on. It’s like putting a prisoner in a cell, saying “Get rehabilitated, I’ll be back in 8-10 years.”
Paul dealt with this issue of sanctification-by-flesh in Colossians at length:
“If you have died with Christ to the elementary principles of the world, why, as if you were living in the world, do you submit yourself to decrees, such as, “Do not handle, do not taste, do not touch!” (which all refer to things destined to perish with use)–in accordance with the commandments and teachings of men? These are matters which have, to be sure, the appearance of wisdom in self-made religion and self-abasement and severe treatment of the body, but are of no value against fleshly indulgence.” (Col 2:20-23)
The false teachers at Colosse were teaching that holiness was, in part, accomplished by simply denying the body things thought to be impure. Flesh denying the flesh? Sounds like a rigged competition.
Instead, the Christian must deal with the heart, even the spirit, and spiritual methods must be used. Prayer, Scripture, ministry and the resolution to seek Him for His power are the tools that accomplish spiritual change.
“And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness ” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. ” (2 Cor 12:9)
Frustrated? Examine your strategy, retool and get you sanctificatioration!