I am so tired and I need to ______. I have gained weight and I need to_____. My house is nasty and I need to________. How often do you find yourself making statements like these? when we talk about problems that we have we often say the solution to them in the same sentence. We know what will solve many of our issues but the problem is that we have to do it. Just saying what we need to do isn’t going to fix anything. Actually we cause ourselves more unhappiness when we know what to do but don’t do it.. We end up building up guilt and shame towards ourselves when we don’t do what we need to do. It makes us feel bad about ourselves and then the enemy puts negative self talk in our mind and that makes us feel even worse.
This has been a struggle of mine for my entire life. I will know what I need to do to bring more peace, happiness, and contentment to my life but I won’t do it. It is almost like a game of tug a war going on within me. One part of me says to just do it and the other part of me says “I will do it later or that I don’t want to do it”. At times it’s like I can actually feel a force pulling one side of me one way and the other side of me another way. Then the thoughts of why can’t I just do what i need to do, or why am I being so stupid, or why am I so lazy play over and over in my mind. The more that I have those thoughts the worse I feel about myself, which for whatever reason, makes me not want to do what I need to do even more. This will go on until I do a lot of self pep talk and decide to not pay attention to anything except what I need to do (while I’m doing it). It’s like once I make a move it breaks that force inside of me that has been pulling me away from doing what I need to do. I’ll do good for awhile and I will stay on top of the things that I need to do but then it will happen all over again. As soon as i don’t do the smallest thing that I need to do, when I need to do it, the tug a war game is back on. You would think that i would have learned the lesson 20 times ago but it still happens from to time.
When we read about how the Isrealites went around the same mountain time and time again we tend to think of how foolish they were. They had the answer to their problems right there with them but they chose to do things their way. How are we any different when we don’t do what we know we need to do to solve our issues? We complain to our friends about how unhappy we are while we are not doing what we could do to bring happiness back to ourselves. We sit back and think about what we need to do but it never gets past the thought. We say, “I need to _______ or I have to _______” but continue to do nothing. We continue going around the same mountains just like the Isrealites.
We have been given the gift of choice with instructions from God to choose life. When we don’t do what we know we need to do then we are choosing death. We are bringing death to our inner being by not doing what is best for us to do. Sure we may not feel like doing it in the moment, but at the same time, how much worse do we feel later on when we don’t do it. It is like a piece of our inner man dies each time that we make the wrong choice of not doing what we need to do.
There is hope though. We can bring life back to ourselves by doing the things that we know we need to do. So much good comes from what we need to do. We gain confidence, happiness, peace, contentment, satisfaction of self and life, and the feeling of accomplishment. We may have to fight against our feelings or our “don’t want to’s” but it is worth the fight. We may have to be uncomfortable for a little while so that we can have lasting comfort and joy. We can talk back to the enemy when he puts the negative thoughts in our mind and defeat him at his own game. It all begins with a choice. And when we choose to do what we need to do we are choosing life and will reap the rewards from it.
Make the decision today that you are going to choose to do what you know that you should have been doing all along. No matter how strong that one of you may seem, the other side of you is stronger. You can do what you need to do through Christ who will give you the strength to do it. Talk to yourself and remind yourself that you are stronger than your feelings and that you choose to do what you need to do instead of what you want to do. Choose life instead of death and reap the rewards of lasting happiness, peace, contentment, and satisfaction.