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They say that a picture is worth a thousand words – well recently some research has shown that people who took “bikini shots” of themselves, while submitting to a weight loss programme, were much more motivated than those who just took fresh measurements each week. Professor Mercedes Rizo Baeza said: “… it is very gratifying to literally see yourself get slimmer over time…What patients want is a photo, rather than cold numbers.” Now we all know how impossibly difficult it is to effect change in ourselves. So typically we look to a whole armada of different enticements, helps, props and tricks to try and effect lasting change.
The Bible contains various commands which seem to imply or expect a change. So, for example, the apostle Paul writes: “Be full of joy”. So you think, well that’s a nice ideal. Then he goes on to say: “I will say again, be full of joy.” Now, of course, mere repetition alone, doesn’t make things any easier, perhaps it only serves to exacerbate things. So revealing a little more of what he said: “Be full of joy…always. I will say again, be full of joy.” The addition of “always” would seem to take things beyond the realm of the ideal to that of the completely ridiculous!
Well let me finally give you everything he actually says: “Be full of joy in the Lord always. I will say again, be full of joy.” Here’s the real power for change, it is: “in the Lord”. You see when we are in connection with Him every moment every day then every change commanded finds sufficient supply.So for me, picture power will always be trumped by person power, and that in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Rev. Hedley Clemo
The Community Church, Thatcham