Replacing The Bad With The Good
"Then goeth he, and taketh to him seven other spirits more wicked than himself; and they enter in, and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first." Luke 11:26
At my heaviest, I tipped the scales at 248 lbs, which is quite heavy for a 5’ 5” frame. I did not realize I was that heavy until I got on the scale at the doctor's office, and the doctor had no room in his day to hear my excuses about a malfunctioning scale. I look back at pictures now, and I hardly recognize the person I became as I ate my way to that weight. The scale shocked me, so I decided to make some changes in my eating and exercise habits, and these changes allowed me to lose weight. This was not the first time I had dieted and had some success, but this was important as I had some health concerns with being that heavy. I wish I could say that I have kept the weight off that I lost, but it seems the weight knows right where to find me. It knocks on my door promising it won't stay, but then I find it has moved on in and attached itself to my sides as love handles.
I have found that the key to success in weight loss and keeping it off is replacing the bad with the good. We eat better when we are on a diet because we have a goal in mind. Once we have lost the weight, we forget what our goal was because we feel good. We then replace the good with the bad and sometimes we not only gain the weight we lost, but we gain more weight and become heavier than ever, No one desires to be this way, but it happens because we do not maintain the good habits we had that allowed us to lose the weight. You must replace the bad habits with good ones and continue to do so if you are to have success. If you leave the door open, then you will find yourself with a set of love handles that will not love you back.
The demon-possessed man here in this Bible passage did not replace the void the evil spirit left with anything spiritual or good, and he soon found himself with the spirit taking possession of him all over again. The spirit joined with other evil spirits and came back to a space that was still unoccupied and the man was worse off than he was before. Sin, much like bad eating habits, must be replaced with something good. It is not enough to confess the sin, but we must forsake it as well and replace it with the truth of God's Word. We must memorize Bible verses to help us prepare for the spiritual battle. The truth will help us combat the lies of the Devil, and we must fight sin with scripture. Jesus fought the devil with scripture, and we must do the same. No one desires to fall back into sin if you are truly born again, but we must fight the devil just as our Savior did.
Where are you today friend? Do you find yourself falling back into sin after confessing it? Do you find yourself going back to the person you despise and don't want to be? Are you in God's Word? Are you memorizing and meditating on His Word? Do you rely on your will, or are you relying on God's grace to fight sin? May we not only forsake the sin, but may we replace it with God's truth.
Stay in the fight!