“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23, 24.
“All defects of character originate in the heart. Pride, vanity, evil temper, and covetousness proceed from the carnal heart unrenowned by the grace of Christ.
It is by the renewing of the heart that the grace of God works to transform the life. No mere external change is sufficient to bring us into harmony with God. There are many who try to reform by correcting this bad habit or that bad habit and they hope in this way to become Christians, but they are beginning in the wrong place. Our first work is with the heart….
The Scriptures are the great agency in this transformation of character. Christ prayed, “Sanctify them through thy truth: Thy Word is truth” (John 17:17). …
Let us not spare ourselves, but carry forward in earnest the work of reform that must be done in our lives. Let us crucify self. Unholy habits will clamor for the mastery, but in the name and through the power of Jesus we may conquer. To him who daily seeks to keep his heart with all diligence, the promise is given, “Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38, 39). –God’s Amazing Grace, p. 223.
Questions to think about:
How can our heart be renewed?
Do we succeed to overcome and reform our wrong habits when we try with our own efforts? Where does this work start from?
Do we need to crucify self and surrender to Christ, who can transform our character in likeness to His own character?