But don’t begin until you count the cost (Luke 14:28, NLT).
Now is a good time to change. We all have something in our lives … actions or attitudes … that need improving. No better time than now to begin.
But why is changing our lives so difficult?
I know a college professor who did research on change. He used a line drawing to illustrate the difficulty of change, and with understanding where the weakness of any decision lies, we can focus our determination to ensure success.
That’s it. This line explains why your New Year’s Resolutions often fail, and your Planet Fitness membership is unused. I’ve even made the line a larger point size so that you can visualize it.
A: This is the point where we consider change.
Our desire for change often comes out of a crisis or a dream. One negative and the other positive but both equally beneficial to start the change process.
You might think, “Uh, oh, a bad medical report, and I need to lose 20 lbs,” or, “I want to become a famous writer and pen blogs like Interruptions.”
The original thought isn’t the decision but the starting point. Between points A and B, we build more conviction and make plans until …
B: We decide to change!
This is the moment! We join a gym, accept Jesus as Lord and Savior, decide to go to counseling with our spouse, enroll in a writing course, or begin making plans for a lifetime dream vacation.
Our change can be motivated by fear or a “works” desire to improve ourselves, and both work at the beginning of change.
C: The decision becomes a habit and a permanent part of our life.
There is a moment in the process of change when we wake up in the morning and realize, “Hey, I love this about myself.”
A time when your faith enables you to overcome temptation; when it is easy to get out of bed at 6 a.m. for a five-mile run; and when you don’t mind saying “No!” to the chocolate pie after a big dinner.
Your motive for sustained change has become love (not fear or works). When you love to do something, it’s easy to be motivated.
Now, understand a few points about change!
- Again, looking at the line, realize it takes at least three months from point A to point C.
It’s easy to have a passionate desire for a decision. But since emotions quickly fade, it’s difficult to maintain the desire for three months until the change becomes a habit.
- Let’s consider the energy expended between Point A and Point C as 100 percent.
Of that 100 percent, only 20 percent of the energy needed is spent from Point A to Point B, and 80 percent, or the rest of the energy, is used between Point B and Point C.
Yes, 80 percent of the energy needed for change happens after the decision – which is why we fail at most attempts to change!
It also indicates why we must count the cost, build accountability through confession, ask for coaching from others, and rely upon the power of the Spirit.
By the way, I’m looking for a 2023 Trek Domane SLR 9 Gen 4 bicycle. If anyone has one in their garage in March, after purchasing it with a New Year’s Resolution on January 1, and wants to sell it …
Let me know!