Four Steps to a New Life
Then Jesus went through the towns and villages, teaching as he made his way to Jerusalem. Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” He said to them, “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.” Luke 13:22-24
It is a narrow focus, a narrow road, but Jesus walked this road and he is now sitting at the right hand of God. We have been told to walk in his steps, and this cannot be said enough, for it is essential that we think like he thinks, love like he loves… care and live and teach like he teaches. Jesus is the way and the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through him, or living as he lived. To follow in his steps, we must turn our steps away from where they were going. Where have you been walking?
To start down the narrow path, you need to walk through the following steps…
Step One - Make A Choice
No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money. Matthew 6:24
Nothing narrows the road more than this one choice. You cannot have it both ways. Many people have deceived themselves and believe they are serving God when they are still serving themselves. No one can serve two masters at the same time. You cannot work at McDonald’s all day and at Wendy’s all day at the same exact time. Impossible. So pick a boss, a business. I choose God and His Kingdom because it has the best benefits and retirement program.
You cannot have it both ways. You cannot love the world and love the Father at the same time. If you love the world, you have no room in your heart to love the Father. This means that the love in your heart is finite. You only have so much to give. You have to choose the path where you live forever.
You need to make a choice—love God first. When you finally make a decision of masters, then you have narrowed your load so that you can enter the narrow door.
Step Two - Turn Around
Once you choose, then walk away from the old master, let it go, repent.
Peter said to the crowd, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Acts 2:38
To serve the new Master, you have to leave the other one; to work for McDonald’s, you have to put in your notice and leave Wendy’s. This repentance is like someone who wakes up from an affair and says, “I have got to get out of this affair because I cannot please two women. One is going to leave me. I am going to choose my wife before I end up having two women rob me of a marriage, my children, and my finances,” and they get up and they go home to stay… forever. You have to say goodbye forever to that way of living, that selfish love. Overeating or tobacco or alcohol or any vice is no different. You either obey the voice of one or you obey the voice of the other. You cannot please both the world and God. You yourself have to get out of these affairs before you are loving the wrong one. Go home to your wife; go home to God. The wrong slave master will be the death of you. That is why the children of God had to get out of Egypt.
Get rid of the old life and never pick it back up. That will be your first time to have true repentance.
Step Three - Put On The New Life
Put on the new life, be born again, and be a new creation by putting the behaviors and mindset of Christ into practice. Live like Jesus Christ in all humility and willingness to suffer to complete the will of the Father. Christ did not complain, he simply lived to please the Father, whatever it took. You cannot stop at just killing your old desires; you have to replace those old desires with godly new desires. You have heard of this parable taught by Jesus in Luke 11:24-26:
“When an evil spirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.”
This person that Jesus was talking about had accomplished Step One (made a decision to serve God) and Step Two… they had repented and left the old behaviors behind. But they had not done Step Three… put on the new self to be like Christ. By not filling the heart with the love of God, the wanton demons came back in and were seven times more wicked than before—now more bingeing, more greed, and more lust than before. Like Ephesians 4:19 says, “ Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.”
Step Four - Persevere
For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins. Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fall, and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. II Peter 1:5-11
Perseverance means sticking with it even though it might be hard. The path gets narrow as those who are struggling give up. Do not give up, because it is hard to get started again. Just keep swimming!
Never consider giving up. This is not just a decision that you make one time. This is a constant, ongoing decision… first every hour, and then every day. The desire to please God starts off your day and it finishes your day.
Day by day and step by step you make every effort and walk on the narrow path and enter by the narrow door. Keep going and you will make it!
The Truth Will Set You Free
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32
When you transform your mind, your heart, and your desires by listening to the truth and by getting into the Bible, then you will want more of God and less of the world. This is a permanent lifestyle change. The truth is going to release the chains and the slavery of the imprisonment that you have been bound to—the enslavement to the pantry, the refrigerator, and all the chocolates in your drawer. We tend to change when we look in the mirror and see ourselves for what we really are.
I want you to experience freedom . Jesus came to Earth—he lived and died to set you free, and down deep you long to be free. Truth helps to end your anxious greed for food or anything else in the world.
A Whole New Life
What a joy to know that you are showing the whole Universe that you love God more than anything, and it points to Who the authority is in this Universe. This is essential and fundamental, and it is a guilt-free life. It is a choice that costs you nothing, a free choice that saves you money. You actually put currency in your pocket from these life choices—fewer doctor bills, pharmaceutical bills, every-size wardrobe bills, diet program bills, lower food and alcohol bills, and fewer counseling bills. This is the grace of God: to be able to choose Him to love so that you do not overdo it on anything in the world.
Why is this grace? It is grace because our nature is to be a slave to something, and the Lord God Almighty is the only loving, merciful, and wonderful Master in the Universe. All other masters are tyrants, dictators, oppressors, persecutors, authoritarians, totalitarians. By grace we have been saved to give our allegiance to the only one Good God in existence. We have a 70-year job interview on Earth, and by grace, if we work for the right boss, we will be hired by the right boss. To be born again—to have a whole new life—you have to stop working for yourself, stop working for evil and evil desires, and work for the One Good Boss, God Almighty. Loving the world is painful—it hurts, and it will never love you back. It is the ultimate unrequited love. It is grace because without Christ’s sacrifice, the Holy Spirit and personality of God would not have been sent to us to dwell in our hearts; we could never have been born again, we would be heavier than ever, angrier, more depressed, having every bad spirit and none of God’s wonderful Spirit in our lives. (John 14:15-27)
Trust me. I am telling you the truth. This world is not special, for it will pass away—however, the man who does the will of the Father will live forever. (I John 2:17) That is special! You think food or alcohol or lust or fortune are special? Is it special to go eat? No, it is not special. Food is not special. God and His Spirit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and self-control is special! That should make your heart rate go up! That should make you excited—a chance to get close to God, a chance to commune with God through Jesus Christ. King David considered this relationship with God better than gold and sweeter than honey. That is exceptional, that is superior! Food, alcohol, or TV is not the reward you give yourself at the end of the hard day anymore. It is God and a relationship with Him, a chance to get alone with Him. There is a whole new life out there waiting for you beyond the pull of the world.
Walk In The Steps Of Christ
You can do this! You can only do one thing wrong, and that is to quit, to give up. So remember, there is suffering both ways in life: doing it God’s way or doing it your way. If you go your own way it results in suffering from curses, while the suffering that comes from doing it God’s way is guilt-free and brings blessings. It is better than giving up and giving in to following your own ways. Remember, Jesus said his yoke is easy. (Matthew 11:30) You can choose this new life if you just focus on putting the truth into your mind daily. It will finally go into your heart and then into your actions.
Walk In Love
If I could come up with a one-word answer for how you are going to reverse this sensual feeling and walk away from your dependencies forever, it would be the word “love.” How could something like the love of God release you from greed? The answer lies in the fact that indulgence, greed, and lust are wrapped up in a love for self. We are programmed by God to love ourselves, and that is why Jesus told us to love our neighbor as ourselves. (Matthew 22:39b) You do not have to train a child to take toys for self.
Success or failure is in your choice of who you love, adore, worship—one is life and one is death. Your passions and your loves dictate your actions today, tomorrow, and the next day. The object of your passion determines whether you binge tonight or victoriously let go of being a god of your life and allow the Creator to rule. If you love God, you will not take His throne. The love that makes it into Heaven forever is selfless, surrendered love and a mind focused on the dominion of God.
We have been given such grace and good news that we can and must change to enter the Kingdom of God. This means that you have the ability to follow Christ and find this genuine love that sets you free from loving yourself. The answer to eternal life is love of God above all things. It is not just about the stopping; it is about instinctively knowing who is Lord of All and showing you acknowledge this authority with your actions. He cares that you would rather obey Him, because it says to Him that you still have a relationship. You are home.
Walk In The Light
Christ is in the image of the Father, and for all mankind to return to the Father we must be like this Christ—free of sin or our own will. The emphasis must be on the superiority of his actions and heart in relation to God. We are imitators at heart—it is a part of our genetic makeup—thus why we should watch the company we keep, the company our children keep, our children’s children.
To focus on Christ for the purpose of imitation is but a joy… his whole life was admirable… one unbroken continuum of selflessness to the service and glory of God for the glory of love and for the eternal welfare of his brothers and sisters—to all mankind. Now Jesus had no beauty so as to attract mankind, no formal education to impress mankind, no artistic gifts to draw attention... He neither offered nor promised wealth to his followers, indeed, he only offered self-denial and possible martyrdom to his followers… So what was attractive about Jesus Christ... he offered the secret of a relationship with God and spoke with authority about such a relationship because he had the most experience—he was the firstborn over all creation. (Colossians 1:15)
In a world of uncertainty, there is a message from Christ of certainty. We do have control over our lives and the outcome. This grace gives us all so much happiness!
The resources at Remnant Fellowship Churches and WeighDown are abundant, and the fellowship is around the world and is powerful.
This is a journey of choices to a whole new life, and on this path, much may be taken away or asked of us, but in the end all that matters is this one thing… to be born again, to have a transformed mind, to be a new creation so as to return to the Creator from whence we came. It is all, again, about showing respect, love and love for God and being able to draw near to Him by imitating Him and His Son, Jesus Christ. This is not the end but the beginning of a whole new life.
What does WeighDown have to do with the Remnant? WeighDown is not about losing weight at all. It is about connecting to God your Creator so that you can live and live eternally. To connect, we must be like Jacob and compete for His presence and love and show God that we want it—that we are not going to let food get in the way of a relationship with God, laying down the love of the created things on Earth over the Creator, and the result just happens to be the receiving of the fruit of God’s Spirit and His characteristics, which include love and joy and peace and patience and kindness and goodness and faithfulness and gentleness and self-control. This self-control leads to weight loss.
Please join us for a live worship service on Wednesdays at 6:20 pm CST and Saturdays at 9:00 am CST and call or email us with any questions 1-800-844-5208, firstname.lastname@example.org.