By Chris Denning
We’re in the middle of our series, What Motivates Sin?, where we’ve been taking a look at 3 motivations in each of us that are the root of our sin. We’ve talked about our past wounds, our current weaknesses and this weekend we’ll be talking about the wickedness of the fallen human condition.
While understanding the root causes of our sin is helpful and necessary, sometimes we could use some practical strategies to help us avoid sin altogether. Today, we’ll take a look at 3 simple (to understand, maybe not to apply) ways that we can avoid sin and grow in our faith.
1. Set Real Boundaries
You know the areas in your life that you routinely struggle with. You know your pain points and your weaknesses. With this information in mind, create some healthy and real boundaries to help to keep you from sinning.
For instance, if you have a problem with lust & the Internet, maybe you want to set some rules for yourself about when/where you can browse and use some software to enforce these boundaries. If you have issues with anger, maybe you need to work to develop some boundaries to keep you from getting to the point of anger.
No matter what area you have trouble with, take the time to create some healthy boundaries to keep you from routinely sinning.
2. Enlist Help
Community is one of the most powerful tools we have in combatting sin. Sharing your burdens, fears, and difficulties with others can help you to find others that can help you stay strong when you find that you are weak.
Make a pact with some friends that you can call each other when you’re struggling. Be open and honest with a choice few people to hold you accountable with the areas of your life you’re trying to work on. Give them permission to look into your life and walk beside you, good or bad.
This kind of community WILL transform your life and enlisting help like this can help you to keep from sinning.
3. Think Your Thoughts
Finally, your thoughts are where sin is most often birthed. The way we think about things can dictate whether we are seeing things in a healthy way or a sinful way. My advice: think your own thoughts.
This seems silly or even redundant, but often time, we sin because we’re not paying attention to how we think about things or what we’re allowing ourselves to think. We have dominion or control over what we allow ourselves to think, and thinking our own thoughts will cause us to pass them through certain filters that can keep us from sinning.
Especially in the areas or topics that you struggle with, pass every thought through this filter: Does this thought help or hurt me? You can’t honestly answer this question in a helpful way without lying to yourself. Take the time and think your thoughts so that you can keep yourself from sin.