Is It Really Hard to Live Right?
Many people think it’s extremely hard to live right, but is it really so?
As children of God, He gives us standards to live by. These standards are seen in His word and they reflect His character. For instance, He is a forgiving God and He asks us to forgive those who offend us (Mark 11:25). He also asks us to love our neighbour – which means practically everyone going by the Parable of the Good Samaritan – because He Himself is Love (Matthew 22:39, Luke 10:25-37, 1 John 4:16).
Many of these standards for living or commandments seem impossible to keep from a human point of view. How can we forgive people who wrong us grievously and without cause? Our natural instinct will be to seek revenge. And how can we love everyone, including our enemies?
So, basically God wants us to live like Himself but how can we since we are human?
This is where God’s grace comes in. God Himself whose Spirit dwells in us after we surrender our lives to His Son, Jesus the Christ, does the seemingly impossible work in us. This is how the Bible puts it:
“for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose” – Philippians 2:13 .
The New Living Translation makes it even clearer:
“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.”
So the same God who saw that we couldn’t pay for our sins and sacrificed His Son to pay that debt also comes to live in us to make us desire what is right and empower us to practise it.
All we have to do it is read His word daily and stay in constant communication with Him. That way, our natural self and its fleshly desires are suppressed (Galatians 5:16-25). Verse 24 says, “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”
However, the struggle to live right is usually complicated by external influences which intervene to give us the wrong desires and move us to do evil.
What are some of the external influences? When we listen to people who defy or ridicule God, be they musicians, social media influencers or politicians, they will pollute our hearts and our desires. And when we continue to associate with the wrong crowd, the ability to do evil will grow in us. Those things we could have barfed if we tried to do them before, we find we begin to do them without batting an eye.
Let us appropriate God’s grace today to live right. As the Lord Jesus says in Matthew 11: 29-30, “29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
There is peace and joy in living for God but turmoil and danger in stepping out of the confines of His word. And it isn’t hard to do that, that is, to live right. Just let His Spirit speak and act through you and you’ll be tremendously blessed.
Amen in Jesus’ name.
The scriptures used in this post are from the New International Version of the Holy Bible except where otherwise stated.