Years ago I found myself struggling with some terrible, horrible, no good, very bad attitudes! These ugly thoughts became so entrenched in my mind. Their tentacles reached deeply into my soul. And without even realizing it, they took up residence there and were my constant companions. These thoughts were a sickening blend of green, black and grey all scribbled together! (Get the picture?! Not pretty!)
I should have demanded these thoughts leave, but instead I put out a “welcome mat,” and said, “Come right in! Make yourself at home!”
By year’s end, I was not a pleasant person to be around! No amount of deodorant or perfume I put on could cover up all the ugliness inside of me. My heart was in desperate need of a makeover!
Usually around New Year’s Eve, I spend some time thinking about New Year’s Resolutions and what I want to accomplish and even what I would like to see God do in the upcoming year. But during this particular year, God changed my focus. I knew I wasn’t going to get very far in the year ahead if I didn’t get rid of these engrained ways of thinking. I had prayed about these things again and again, but nothing ever changed.
Being the visual person that I am, God met me in my ugliness and gave me an idea. (Isn’t God so good to us?! My ugliness does not overwhelm Him!)
1. Think about the things I’m struggling with and write them on a piece of paper.
2. On New Year’s Eve, place them in my fireplace and watch them burn!
3. Pray that God would refine me in HIS fire! To refine means to remove impurities. He wants to refine us like gold is refined. The impurities come to the surface and are whisked away. (Refining Silver and Gold)
4. No matter how justified I feel in keeping these thoughts close, repent and surrender them to Him!
5. Replace these terrible, horrible, no good, very bad attitudes with the opposite thoughts! This list of things to “put off” and “put on” is helpful in recognizing and replacing those thoughts. It is something WE DO, but His power is available to help us do it.
6. Walk in the truth of His Word that says if I confess my sin, He is faithful and just to forgive me of my sin but to cleanse me from all unrighteousness (I John 1:9). This is an act of faith based on truth not in how I feel on any given day!
Won’t you join me this year in giving God the areas we struggle with most?! I plan on doing this again this year! Thankfully, I am walking a little freer in those areas. I have a whole new set of things I need God to burn off me.
We are having friends over New Year’s Eve, and I’ve never done it with other people. Hopefully, they will want to join me in preparing for the upcoming year.