Some nights I get ahead of myself and set my alarm for 7:00 a.m. thinking I will get up and go for a 20 minute jog. And when I crawl out of bed at 7:30 a.m., I feel like a bum for changing my mind. I've done that more times than I can count. On those mornings, I quickly learn how bad I am at working out.
Spiritual fitness can make you feel the same way. You get busy. Quiet times become more sporadic. And then the guilt sets in. You feel unworthy of being used by God.
Or what if you are in the word and your relationship with God is close? But there's that one sin that's keeping you from complete oneness with God.
Wherever you are, the more we strive to be like Christ, the more aware we are of our sinfulness. This is discouraging - but normal. You are threatening Satan and his control over you. When someone is losing power over another, they will naturally expend more energy to gain it back.
This is where transformation begins. James tells us to consider it pure joy when we face trials of many kinds, because the testing of our faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that we can mature in Christ. James 1:2-4.
We've got to continue to ask God to work in us during those trials. And he will. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. Phil. 2:13.