It’s pretty common for me to hear something convicting.
Whether it’s a sermon, a chapter from a book, a blog post, a word from a friend, or scripture itself – I’m surrounded by helpful words about things I need to remember.
Truths I need to claim. Attitudes I need to have.
But is my conviction leading me to real fruitful action?
Need for Specifics
In The Pursuit of Holiness, Jerry Bridges discusses our behavior at the point of conviction:
“We are prone to vagueness at this point because commitment to specific actions makes us uncomfortable.”
“We somehow feel that consent to the teaching of Scripture is equivalent to obedience.”
We don’t get points for just nodding our heads or grunting an approving “Amen” during a sermon. We can’t just agree with truth, we have to be changed because of it.
And if we don’t get specific about that change, there’s a good chance it will never happen.
Rather than generally desiring not to be angry, make it a specific point to control the way you react to your spouse this week. Instead of merely agreeing with a sermon about greed, take a look at your budget and maybe make some cuts.
Not only does committing to specific changes help us follow through, but we have to wonder about the extent of our conviction in the first place if we’re hesitant to list specific actions to take.
Am I Just a Hearer?
So I think about this in terms of my time.
It’s really easy for me to read some list of 10 ways to defeat procrastination or 7 tips to sticking with an exercise program. But am I stopping at the reading?
If I truly desired to bring God as much glory as I could, wouldn’t that mean constantly changing my life? Not just growing in holiness, but growing in my kingdom-focused productivity?
Like Jerry Bridges said earlier, am I merely agreeing with the wisdom of a sermon or book? Do I just nod my head at God’s word?
Or do I want to change so much that I actually make arrangements for real, palpable, specific actions?
I sat down and came up with a few specific changes that I believe would help me manage my time better for God’s glory. And by God’s grace, I’m going to work intently on making those changes and turning them into good habits.
I want to challenge you to do the same.
Make a brief list and then commit to working on those items.
Don’t think “that’s a good idea!” and put it off until tomorrow. Make it a point to make this list today – even if you only think about it for a few seconds.
James 1:22 – But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
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