I can't vs I don't

“I Can’t” vs “I Don’t”

I was listening to a podcast recently when I heard someone talking about the difference between “I can’t” vs. “I don’t,” and so many lightbulbs went off in my head. What a powerful difference in mindset!

“I Can’t” – I want to do it, but I can’t do it. It’s restrictive. Remember Eve in the Garden of Eden? Restricted! You can eat from ANY tree in the Garden, just not that one. Guess which one she was tempted and ate from? That one! Anyone raising kids, when you tell them not to do something, what do they do?

Romans 7:15 (NIV) “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do. What I hate, I do.

“I Don’t” – I don’t do that, because that’s not who I am. My identity is found in my actions that I don’t do those things. It’s my choice, and the choices I make can be empowering.

Let’s run through an example. Let’s think about a nice, warm, wonderful donut. Do you think – I can’t eat the donut, I’m on this diet and I’m watching my sugar intake? Or rather, I don’t eat donuts. Period. There is a huge difference!

So how about our identity in Christ? Is our mindset, I can’t do blank, blank, and blank; or could it rather be more founded on this: 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.

So it’s not that I can’t cuss, gossip, operate in hatred, be unloving, unkind; but rather that I don’t. I challenge you to stop saying you can’t, but rather, you don’t and see how your life will change in so many areas that are pleasing to God!

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