Most mature people come to realize and accept that they have attitudes and behaviors that are wrong and harmful to themselves and others. If a person is religious she or he may label such attitudes and behaviors as “sin”. That is a good start to change oneself, but it is only a start. The far more difficult part is to actually effectuate the desired change.
Everyone has tried to change the way they think, feel, talk, and act – with varying degrees of success. Many true believers in Jesus have experienced enormous personal change in their lives at the time of their conversion, evidencing the presence and power of Christ within them! Even with that experience, few things in life cause Christians greater ongoing consternation than our failure to fully become the person that God and we would like to be.
It seems like some thoughts, traits, or impulses within people are so deeply ingrained that even with great focus, effort, prayer, and accountability they change very little. Instead, we much more easily turn our attention to pointing out others’ faults and try to change them. Yet God is faithful to nudge His children to seek forgiveness for these sinful attitudes and behaviors, and to continue to strive by God’s Spirit within them to overcome them.