Why wait until you hit bottom or the pain gets so bad that you have to change? Why not make the decisions that lead to life right now. Why not allow the Holy Spirit to tap into the power of desperation in your life today – right now!
1. What am you tolerating right now? Ask yourself, “What am I tolerating right now that God wants to change?” Is it a sin, a bad habit, a broken relationship, ministry stagnation or something else? Think about this and ask the Holy Spirit to make you aware of how things really are in your life and ministry. Define reality (see Ps.139:23. 2 Cor.13:5). Take time to evaluate your life. Reflect, appraise, be honest and get real. How is my life going? Really?
2. Why are you tolerating this? Think about “why” you’re doing what you’re doing right now (or not doing something you know is important). Everything we do is for a reason, whether we’re conscious of it or not. Usually that reason has to do with “avoiding pain” and “gaining pleasure” (Tit.3:3. Lk.8:14. Heb.11:25). Change requires linking pain to your old behaviour and pleasure to your new. Often, living at a higher level requires some short-term pain to achieve long-term pleasure. This is wisdom.
3. What are your options? Then ask yourself, “What can I do about this?” Consider your options. You can do nothing and keep living the same way. That’s a genuine option. However, think about the consequences of that option. Or you can do something about what you’re tolerating and do something different to change this area of your life. Success or failure is usually found in the daily habits of our lives. If you keep doing the same things you’ll probably get the same results. Often different actions produce different results.
4. What will you do about it? Finally, ask yourself, “What will I do about this?” and “When?” Accept responsibility for your situation and for doing something to change it. “Repentance” reflects desperation. It says, “I refuse to keep going this way.” “I will turn around, towards God and change me direction and way of living.” Interrupt your limiting pattern (bad habit) and create a new alternative (new habit) then reinforce it over and over. Our “decisions” determine our destiny not our “conditions”.
Don’t be like Pharoah who was willing to spend one more night with the frogs because he refused to change his heart (Ex.8:8-10). Cultivate a fresh sense of desperation that motivates you to be who God wants you to be and to do what he wants you to do. When a person uses the power of desperation, God can move in to bring about deep and lasting change that results in breakthroughs to new levels of intimacy with God, character change and increased ministry effectiveness. Others notice and are inspired to do the same. How’s your desperation factor?