Dr. Charles F. Stanley

No man or woman is absolutely free. Romans 6:16 says we are the slaves of the one whom we obey—slaves of either sin or obedience to the Lord. Because every human is born with a fallen nature, being the master of our own lives is the same as being enslaved to sin.

Our heavenly Father’s prescription for this unhealthy situation is submission to Him. But we may reason this way: If I give the Lord control, then I lose it—and that’s scary. God could lead me somewhere I don’t want to go.

When fear seeps into your heart, stop and consider the Lord’s character and motive: He is holy and sinless; He has infinite wisdom, perfect knowledge, and an eternal perspective; He loves you and has the power to work all things for your good (Rom. 8:28). Now compare your credentials to His. Who do you think would make a better master of your life?

If the Lord is to have full authority, all rival rulers must be dethroned. The Spirit will not fill believers who tolerate sin in their lives. The grace of God covers the guilt of our transgressions, but it cannot be used to excuse continued disobedience (Rom. 6:1). We grieve the Spirit by saying yes to sin (Eph. 4:30) and stifle Him by saying no to God (1 Thess. 5:19).

Do not be discouraged by the magnitude of this call to submission. We can’t attain sinless perfection on earth, but with each step of obedience, sin’s hold will lessen. Press on—you’ll soon begin to live in the freedom of enslavement to the most amazing Master you’ve ever known.

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