Part of living for God is giving Him the best of you that you have to offer. While He doesn’t expect you to be perfect, God also doesn’t expect to be given the leftovers. The Bible tells us that we are to “love the Lord your God with all of your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might.” How can we do this if we’re growing mentally and physically, but not spiritually?
This is an excellent page for discussion. You have already led them to two unanswered questions.
If God’s advice is not “Be good and stop being bad,” what is His advice?
We are supposed to love everyone no matter what they have done to us, including God; but, how is that possible?
Study John 3. Please get comfortable with Jesus' statement that you MUST be born again. Nicodemus didn’t know this despite his extensive education. But you have the entire Bible to read, and you have the Holy Spirit to teach you all things. You can’t miss this concept or diminish it and be an effective ambassador for Christ.
The rebirth, being born of the spirit, allows us to love Him and others. Without this regeneration of our spirit, we flounder like everyone else; Henry David Thoreau observed, “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.”
We can do many things to improve our lives; yet, we are powerless to change our lives of quiet desperation.
We can choose to do good. Anti-Christians correctly point out that they don’t need to be a Christian to be good people.
We can choose to improve our minds through education, meditation, and thinking positively.
We can choose to improve our physical health through diet, exercise, surgery, medication.
The world has innumerable experts in improving our minds and our bodies. But the world has not a single expert at changing our spirits. Why? Because mindful change happens mindfully, physical change happens physically, and spiritual change happens spiritually. Only a spirit can change us spiritually.
At a minimum, choosing to miss out on spiritual change is a decision to give up at least 1/3 of our health. (You could make the argument that 100% of our health is improved when we are born again but don’t say that, it will seem you are overstating your case.) Moreover, igniting our spirit with His love is the one thing God can do to bring us true joy.
Until our spirit changes, we linger with the darkened heart, wondering why we feel like something in our lives could be better.