Flowing Faith

How to Overcome

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Do you know how to overcome temptations? Because it is not about growing your moral muscle!

The main thing to remember is this: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phil. 4:13, NKJV)

The Amplified Bible says the same verse this way: “I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me.” We have strength for all things if we are in Christ who empowers us.

Okay, you say.
But how to do it?
How to overcome temptations, troubles, ourselves?

John Piper’s acronym A.P.T.A.T is very helpful:
A — I admit I can’t in myself do what needs to be done.
P — I pray for God’s help.
T — I trust a particular promise he has given.
A — I act to do whatever God is calling me to do.
T — I thank him for his help when I am done.

How does this work? Whenever you face a temptation….ADMIT that you can’t do what needs to be done. PRAY for help. TRUST God’s promises (like Phil. 4:13 or any other Bible verse God brings into your mind). Then go and ACT. And don’t forget to THANK God!

You can watch John Piper to vivaciously explain this as part of his sermon last Sunday here.

This is what walking in the Spirit is. It’s not about us flexing our moral muscle. It’s not about our strength. It’s about the Holy Spirit overcoming the temptations we meet. It’s about leaning to God and asking for help. And then trusting God and acting in faith. And giving thanks and glory to God.

This is the way God works.
   Over and over again
He pulls our souls back from certain destruction
   so we’ll see the light—and live in the light!
(Job 33: 29-30, MSG)

Francis of Assisi states “Above all the grace and the gifts that Christ gives to his beloved is that of overcoming self.” Why don’t we then practice living in the light? We have not been left to deal with life on our own. We have not been left to do what is right on our own strength. We have not been left to deal with sin and temptations on our own. First of all, God provided Jesus so we could be saved by grace through Christ. Second, God provided us the Holy Spirit to dwell in us and help us to overcome.

The trouble is that we try to manage on our own. No matter how many times we fail we don’t ask for help. We don’t realize that God DELIGHTS in helping us. God did not go through all the trouble to save us to just leave us to manage on our own.

God delights in helping us.
God delights in pouring out grace upon grace on us!
God delights when we learn to live in his light and love.

You were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord, so live your life as children of light. (Eph. 5:8, CEB)

Gracious God,
Forgive us for thinking that
we are left here to deal with our lives on our own.
Forgive us for forgetting that
you delight in helping us to live in your light.
Empower us to live in the Holy Spirit
and use all the gifts of your children.
In Jesus’ name,
Amen

Q4U: How do you overcome?

Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you live in the Light!

Image courtesy of Kyle Reed. Linking up today with Thought-Provoking Thursdays &

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