This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? Have ye suffered so many things in vain? – Galatians 3:2-4
We started with God’s power. We admitted our weakness and our helplessness and hopelessness. We have no power to change our lives because we are not God. But there is one true God who does have both the power and the will to save us. So we trusted Him and submitted ourselves to Him by accepting the Savior He provided in Jesus Christ. We gave our lives to Him and He began to change us.
But after a while we start thinking, “It’s me that’s doing this, I’m making the changes.” Before we know it we’ve started depending on ourselves instead of on Him – the one who really does the saving work. “Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” – Galatians 3:3
We skip over the teachings in God’s word that we don’t like or we think are unnecessary or inconvenient and become satisfied with a changed life that isn’t complete. “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth? This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you.” – Galatians 5:7-8
We forget about our need for relationship with other believers. You can’t heal from from your sins alone. If you could, you would have already. But you can’t do it alone, so you won’t. We need a Savior and we need other people. God gives us relationships with other people for help in times of weakness. “Two are better off than one because if one of them falls down, the other can help him up. But if someone is alone and falls it’s too bad because there’s nobody there to listen and lift him up or help him.” – Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
There is power in confessing our faults and troubles to one another. There is power in praying for one another. There is power in testifying of God’s mercy and grace to those around us. When we tell our stories, it not only helps us, it helps other people because they see themselves in those stories. We overcome the enemy by “the blood of the lamb and the word of our testimony”. – Revelation 12:11
We fall to pride. Proverbs 16:18 says “Pride goes before destruction.” It keeps us from seeking help. Pride blinds us to our own weakness. It prevents us from giving and seeking forgiveness. It keeps us from prayer and confession. It hinders everything God wants to do in our lives and it encourages failure.