Since Roger and I wrote Purity by Design we have had many conversations with people about how they can live free from the bondage of sin. Many people have the experience of asking for forgiveness and repenting… only to find that after a period of time they fall back into sin again.
The question isn’t: how you get free? The real question is: How do you stay free?
How can we shore ourselves up and avoid this yo-yo cycle that is far too common for many believers today? What is the key to living in freedom? Part of the key is understanding what freedom is, and how it functions.
Freedom is more than getting forgiven. Freedom is beyond just repenting. Most of the people that I know who have fallen back into sin, started out sincere. What tripped them up? What hindered them from fully living in the freedom that Christ provided?
The pattern that I have seen in people’s lives that fall back into sin is that they passively received Jesus’ redemption. Many people want what Jesus did. They want His peace, hope, and security. They want freedom from oppression, and depression. They want the result of abundant life. However, as free as this gift is, if it is not nurtured—just like a newly planted seedling—it will wither and become trampled by the weight of the world.
Freedom cannot be passively maintained. It requires that we make intentional choices. We cannot merely turn from sin; we must turn to God. If we do not actively pursue the One who set us free, we should not be surprised to find ourselves slipping back into the tempting lull of sin.
We have an enemy. He is both subtle and violent. He wants us blind and deaf, and dumb. He wants us bound, weak, and caught up in the world.
So what’s the answer? How do we actively pursue freedom? How do we grow in Christ? I will share what I have found. The biggest factor between success and failure is: input.
What is your input? What are you taking in? What are you entertaining yourself with? What movies are you watching? What are you looking at, and listening to?
There is a direct correlation between what you take into your mind, and what you do.
Honestly decide if you want to be free from the yo-yo of falling back into sin. Are you tired of the hidden shame of pornography? Are you weary of overeating, drinking, or any other area of self-gratification that you have been caught up in?
Christ has made provision for your freedom. If you want it, it is available. Make a commitment to pursue it… to pursue Him. Here are a few ideas:
- Slowly read and meditate upon one section of Psalm 119 everyday (it will take you about 3 weeks)
- Write down a verse (on a card or post-it note) from the daily section of Psalm 119 that you read, and memorize the key verse(s) that inspire you.
- Ask the LORD for new areas of godly input that you will enjoy—that will strengthen you (art, journaling, soaking to worship music, nature, etc). Then develop a habit of doing these things.
- Check out our book, Purity by Design for very practical tools about how to walk in freedom in Christ.
“Finally, be strong in the LORD and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil, and having done all to stand. Stand therefore...” Ephesians 6:10-18