Guest Author - Preena Deepak
In faith your receive Christ and His free gift of salvation. You are born into the family of God and give yourself to Christ. Now you get back to your life. You encounter the same old people, face the same problems and get tempted the same old way. Slowly you begin to drift away and sin begins to take the upper hand.
Paul writes in Romans 12:1 that we are called to present our lives holy and acceptable to God as an act of worship. If sin continues to remain in our lives, we can be neither holy nor acceptable. Sin is something every believer has to stamp out of life constantly. There is no end to the spiritual warfare within and every child of God must learn to put down the desires of the flesh and live by the leading of the Spirit. In His letter to the Galatians, Paul directs believers to make it a habit to walk and be led by the guidance of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16). This alone, will help a believer to remain sinless.
There are some practical ways to stay away from sin and get rid of the ill effects of sin.
Be aware of Godís presence
Nothing you do is hidden from God. No matter where you live or what time zone you belong to, you are always under Godís microscope. When Psalm 121:4 says that the Lord who keeps Israel neither slumbers nor sleeps, it is not just a comfort to know that you are under Godís constant care, it is also a warning that God's sleepless eyes watch both the good and bad you do. He is always watching over His world and the people He created. God can see you inside out. He knows what you do and why you do it. The Psalmist knew this too well and writes how he finds no escape from Godís watchful eyes in heaven or on earth or even in the depths (Psalm 139:7 Ė 12).
A thief knows that the best time to commit a crime is when he is not watched. Very rarely will anyone dare to shop lift in front of the security guard or when they are right under a surveillance camera. In the same way, we open the door to sin when we forget that we, Godís children live under his watchful eyes and fool ourselves that we are hidden from God. When you realize that God sees you as you sin, you will surely think twice before you proceed.
Have a daily quiet time
Set aside a time everyday to wait on God. This is your recharge time. The more time you spend in re charging yourself with Bible reading, prayer, songs and praise, the better equipped you are to fight sin. The pressures of this world will always lure you away from spending time with God. Never let this happen. Prioritize your quiet time with God. Choose what works best for you and stick to it earnestly. When you do, the Joy of your Salvation will oust out every desire to sin.
Memorize and meditate on Godís Word
Grow beyond a casual reading of the Bible and get to a deeper understanding by memorizing and meditating on Godís word. Use a Bible Study guide, a commentary or a Bible dictionary to understand tough passages. Fill in your free time with what you learn and you will soon find that you have no time to spare for sin.
One of the greatest weapons a Christian believer holds in hand is prayer. List out your weaknesses in prayer and ask for Godís help in overcoming them. When you pray, believe that you will receive deliverance and you really will. An earnest plea, made from a repentant heart will reach God instantly.
A very unique feature of the Christian faith is the emphasis on fellowship or assembling together of believers. One of the main purposes of a fellowship is to bear each otherís burdens and encourage one another. Paul often emphasizes this in his letters to the early churches. A fellowship group is not only a great source to find prayer support, comfort and encouragement but also serves as a check point to guide you along the right course through your struggles with sin. Look out for a group of believers you feel comfortable with. Make sure to meet regularly and bank on their love and prayers to tide over sin.
Take professional help
At times taking help from experienced professionals may be necessary to get rid of sinful habits or to rectify effects on sin on your body. Try to find a Christian professional or a Christian counseling service and seek help. If you cannot find a Christian service, pray and approach a professional who can assist you.
A life with Christ cannot continue to be ridden with sin. If you are struggling with sin, take one or more of these steps and break free. Christ is willing to give you total freedom from sin and there is no weakness He canít heal and forgive.
Here are Amazon links to a couple of books I'd like to suggest for further reading on overcoming sin.
"The Bondage Breakerģ: Overcoming *Negative Thoughts *Irrational Feelings *Habitual Sins" by Neil Anderson
"The Root of the Problem: Why We Sin & How We Can Overcome" by Andy Sochor