Growing up in the southeastern part of the United States, I learned at least one thing very important: This time of year, you have to keep moving so that kudzu doesn’t get you.
You know what kudzu is, right? No? Well, kudzu is a vine that is native to Japan and was introduced to the United States at the 1876 Centennial Expo in Philadelphia, PA. In the past 130+ years, it has almost taken over the southeastern part of the United States. Every spring, it starts creeping out of hiding, and soon fields, road sides, woods, anything without a lot of traffic, is soon overrun with the stuff.
People fight it with machetes and trimmers and chemicals. They push it back into the woods. But, eventually, it begins to creep back into yards and fields.
It seems that nothing can stop kudzu. It can get frustrating.
Reminds me of sin.Did you know that just as kudzu is not natural to the United States, sin is not natural to humans. Oh, it’s part of us now; and it looks like it’s here to stay.
No matter what we do, it keeps coming back. We pray; we read Scripture; we ask for help from others; we push back sin into the recesses of our hearts and minds… and it always creeps back into the open.
Yes, it looks like sin is here to stay. It looks hopeless.
But, our hope can’t be on our ability (or lack of ability) to fight sin. Yes, we should desire to live in a way that honors God. We should desire to follow Jesus Christ in everything, and he never leads to sin. We should seek to live in the Holy Spirit, and his life does not result in sin.
There are so many commands in Scripture about putting away, cutting out, avoiding sin. It’s hard work.
But, the work itself is not ours. The work of justification and sanctification is God’s work. He is working in us.
When you fight sin, and it just keeps coming back, remember that God is doing the work in you. Jesus Christ has provided forgiveness and atonement. The Holy Spirit is leading you and empowering you to live in Christ.
Today, you live in grace.
So, how do you fight back sin? How do you balance God’s work in sanctification with your work in putting away sin? Do you allow other people to help in this? How?