Written by Ken McIntyre
January 3, 2021

Have you ever made a bad situation worse? Maybe:

  • Your spouse had a rough day, and you came home and said the wrong thing.
  • Perhaps you are in a tough financial spot, but choose to spend money in a way that harms you even further.
  • Maybe you want to get your health back on track but still choose to sacrifice sleep for tv, and real food for junk food.


We all, from time to time, make bad situations worse. We can trace this self-destructive tendency right back to the first humans – Adam and Eve. Not only do they disobey God and choose to do that which they were explicitly told not to, but then, they hide from God! It’s one thing to do something wrong; it’s another thing to do something wrong to try and cover the wrong thing that you did. That always makes a bad situation worse.



How to have the worst year ever:

  • You don’t want to have a bad year. And this series we’re about to jump into is about helping you avoid spiritual self-sabotage.
  • Because there are things that you ARE in control of. I know it might not feel like it all the time. If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that we can’t control everything. But there are some things that you can control.
  • And your spiritual life is one of those things.


Listen to what King David had to say about this in Psalm 103.

1 Praise the Lord, my soul;

  all my inmost being, praise his holy name.

2 Praise the Lord, my soul,

  and forget not all his benefits—

3 who forgives all your sins

  and heals all your diseases,

4 who redeems your life from the pit

(Psalm 103:1-4)


David is talking himself into worship here. He’s saying, “soul, you listen to me, you will praise the Lord. I am choosing to worship, and I will command my soul to attend to God. I’m going to draw near to him because that’s my choice”.


Sometimes, we need to do that.

  • Sometimes you don’t feel thankful, but you can still choose to be thankful.
  • Sometimes you don’t feel generous; you can still choose to be generous.
  • Sometimes you don’t feel like praying; you can choose to pray still.


Why? Because there are things that you are in control of. And you are in control of your spiritual life.



Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

1 There is a time for everything,

  and a season for every activity under the heavens:

2  a time to be born and a time to die,

  a time to plant and a time to uproot,

3  a time to kill and a time to heal,

  a time to tear down and a time to build,

4  a time to weep and a time to laugh,

  a time to mourn and a time to dance,

5  a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

  a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,

6  a time to search and a time to give up,

  a time to keep and a time to throw away,

7  a time to tear and a time to mend,

  a time to be silent and a time to speak,

8  a time to love and a time to hate,

  a time for war and a time for peace.


A central theme in this passage is change. And God is in control of all the change. He isn’t surprised by change. It’s God’s design to change things. And not just something “out there” – it’s God’s design to change you!


Spiritual maturity isn’t about staying the same. Stagnation isn’t God’s design for your life. God’s plan for your life and spiritual maturity comes through change.


And so the question is, what needs to change for you to change?


If you don’t have a resolution or goal lined up, or even if you do, what if this is the question that prompted that goal: what do I need to change to look more like Jesus?


My challenge to you is to spend some time with the Lord today or tomorrow – find 10 minutes or set aside an hour and bring this question before God: What do I need to change to be more like Jesus?


You are in control of your spiritual life. Don’t sabotage yourself and make a bad situation worse.


What needs to change for you to change? What do you need to change to look more like Jesus?