Lord I Was Born A Rambling Man; Not!


Many years ago a group known as the Allman Brothers released a song that opened with these lyrics:

Lord I was born a ramblin’ man

Trying to make a livin’ and doin’ the best I can

And when it’s time for leavin’

I hope you understand

That I was born a ramblin’ man

(Ramblin’ Man)

The lyrics go on to tell the sad tale of his upbringing. His father was a gambler and died by violence. He was born in the back of a greyhound bus, signifying why he is who he is! After each verse the chorus repeats that he was “born a rambling man”, which, in the mind of the singer, justifies his inability to live a stable life. While it is true that we are influenced by our background and environment, it is also true that throughout history many individuals, raised under unspeakable conditions have overcome their pasts. No one is born a “rambling” man. It is more that one chooses to continue down the road they have become familiar with. But change can come about for anyone who so desires! The key word is “desire”. One must want to change their path in order to have any hope of success. Once desire is in place, change takes hard work! And because it take hard work, many give in to the thought of “I was born that way”, so…..I will continue as I am. In so doing they give in to the natural man and except their lot in life.

We know that man can change from their natural state to a more spiritual state. That is what conversion is all about. The church website defines conversion as:

“… a process, not an event. Conversion comes as a result of righteous efforts to follow the Savior. These efforts include exercising faith in Jesus Christ, repenting of sin, being baptized, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end in faith. Although conversion is miraculous and life changing, it is a quiet miracle.”

A key word used above is “efforts”. As I stated, it takes work. The church website uses the word “effort”. Both words speak to the necessity of action on the part of the person who desires to change. In a more practical sense, if we want to change some characteristic about ourselves we must first have the desire to change it, and then work at making that change till it no longer is part of who we are. Some of us might have a problem with temper, or selfishness, or envy or pride. We might struggle with any number of negative traits that we “learned” from our upbringing or perhaps developed on our own. Regardless, none of us are “born” with “ramblin'” characteristics that can’t be change. To believe so is a denial of the power of God to change our lives. God does have power to transform man, and He can make that change real in our personal lives.


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