We’ve been given a choice, haven’t we? In laying aside the old self by an act of our will—in turn putting on the new self—our opportunities become limitless. Why? Because the new self has been created in the likeness of God. And since we are created in the likeness of God, we have within us a foundation of righteousness and holiness of the truth. The power to make positive choices is wholly dependent on one essential qualification: Christ’s indwelling presence (Romans 8:10). Walking out our faith, then, in the reality our new self comes about by making up our mind to do so, while relying totally upon what God has already provided through His overcoming power.
God has given us an irrevocable promise: “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”(13) So why aren’t Christians falling all over themselves trying to make sure His promises come to fruition in their lives? There’s a very good reason why: it all comes back to the problem of self-will. And until we really understand the implications of a heart being led by the innate presence of self-will, our chances of living in all that God has so bountifully provided are greatly hindered.
(Excerpted from “Free from the Power of Sin: The Keys to Growing in God in Spite of Yourself”)