Step 10: Hold Out Against Sin
Resist the devil and he will flee from you. (James 4:7)
A: Discovering the Truth
B. Exploring the Truth
Of course we have all heard the old saying that “it is easier said than done,” which seems to be the case when trying to put down our sin nature. We seem to be powerless to resist. But this is lie from the father of lies (“you will not die”). The truth is, the only power temptation has over us is the power we give to it. Continue reading “Hold Out Against Sin”
Weakest & Least
Judges 6:14-16 – “Go in the strength you have. Am not I sending you.” “But Lord,” Gideon asked, “how can I. My clan is the weakest and I am the least in my family.” The Lord answered, “I will be with you.”
My Musing – Even in our weakness (or especially in our weakness) we can overcome obstacles, barriers and adversaries. Even though we may be weak, we “go in the strength we have” because God goes with us.
My Advice – Do not be afraid to admit your weaknesses. But do not let those weaknesses be an excuse for not doing what you know God wants you to do. His strength is sufficient. It is, in fact, made perfect in our weaknesses. This is because we rely upon Him and not upon our self-sufficiency.
Judges 3:12, 15 – Once again the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the Lord. Again the Israelites cried out to the Lord, and He gave them a deliverer. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – This is a recurring theme throughout the book of Judges. Israel falls into sin. Israel gets into trouble because of the sin. Israel cries out to God for help. God delivers Israel. While it is much better to obey in the first place, God’s mercy and grace is abundant.
My Advice – Life is full of spiritual set backs. Often it is the same nagging sin that we had trouble with not so long ago. Do your best to resist temptation. But when you do sin, never fall into the devil’s trap of thinking that God will not forgive you this time. God will always forgive if your confession and repentance are sincere. His well never runs dry.
Fade To Black (And White)
Eileen and I have now been married nearly forty-two years and have known each other forty-four. This coming January, Joshua will have been gone twenty-five years. Joel has been out of college ten years and is nearly thirty-three. And now, Eileen and I are back to where it all began – empty nesters.
There has been a “whole lot of living” in all of those years. And as promised at the beginning, we trust that we have given you a glimpse into how God has brought about good and how He has blessed us with joy and peace in the midst of affliction and sorrow. Continue reading “Fade To Black (And White)”
A Generation More Devoted
Judges 2:7 – Unlike their fathers, they quickly turned from the way in which their father’s had walked, the way of obedience to the Lord’s commands. (NIV 1978)
My Musing – It is a sad fact of life that all too often (but not always!) there is generational drift. Each successive generation is less devoted to God than the previous. That is until, like the Judges of Israel, God raises someone up to save the nation (family).
My Advice – Pay attention to your Christian heritage. The family that you came from and their devotion and obedience to God and Jesus. Learn from that devotion (what to imitate) and from those instances where they (meaning mainly me) departed from that devotion (what not to imitate). Make it a goal of your life to be a generation that is more devoted than the past one, and pass it on.
When Failure To Choose Is A Choice
Joshua 24:14, 15 – “Now fear the Lord and serve Him with all faithfulness. But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves whom you will serve. But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – Few Christians would intentionally and explicitly choose to not serve the Lord. But the sad reality is that many do so “unintentionally” and implicitly simply by inaction. Choices that we do not make are really choices.
My Advice – Be intentional about your choice to serve God. Make this a choice not only for yourself, but when the time comes for your family too.
*And What Comes After
If you’ve been following my blogs, you know by now that my Sunday “amusings” start off with something a tad bit humorous (like this caricature of the Village People and their performance of the YMCA), but quickly moves on to things a bit more serious. This week is no exception. Continue reading “Random Thoughts On Aging*”