Skip to main content

Finding our way

Let's be careful about how we 'slam' each other right now for either erring on the side of NOT wearing a mask or choosing to wear one at all times, keeping our kids home when school begins or choosing to send them into the classrooms, or choosing to work from home to reduce risks of exposure or choosing to go into the workplace every day. We find fault with each other over the stuff of life - that is for certain - but don't let it divide us, or harsh words of criticism be spoken that will leave 'riffles' in our relationships. This isn't wise at all. Yes, there are those who are choosing to live on the edge of life right now - not really being respectful of advice to observe social distancing, choosing not to cover one's mouth and nose with a face mask, and even chafing against the 'establishment' of rules related to where we can socialize right now. It doesn't mean we have to be rude and unkind toward them - we can urge strongly that they take the advice of those in scientific settings that understand the spread of highly contagious, communicable diseases. We cannot help but wonder why some choose one course and others choose a dissimilar one. The truth of the matter is that we all 'find our way' in life - some of us a little closer to the edge than others, but we all are finding our way.

See, I have found only this, that God made men right, but they have found many sinful ways. (Ecclesiastes 7:29)

God made us right - anything within us now that isn't 'right' is really a result of the sinful nature within - the nature that actually works to convince us our ways are 'right' and another's are 'wrong'. The reason we choose one course over another isn't always as cut and dry as we'd like to be, but trust me on this one - our sin nature does a lot of 'choosing' for us that isn't always the wisest! God made us right, but we choose to continue to live 'right' each and every day by putting our trust in Jesus, leaning into what he asks us to do, and then making concentrated effort to continue to select wise choices as we go throughout our day. Lives made right again in Christ Jesus aren't always going to be free of making wrong choices, though. We might have been made right again, but we find this struggle between right and wrong is a very hard thing because our willfulness can be a real problem!

Some will stop reading right there because they see no problem within themselves that even suggests they have a hind to willfulness, but I'd disagree with that assessment. None of us is without sin - that means none of us is without a will. Where there is a will at work, there is ALWAYS room for willfulness to creep in, self demanding its own way, and stubbornness beginning to formulate plans that are contrary to what God requests of us. If we find ourselves being hyper-critical of another who is struggling with some willfulness of their own, we need to beware because the old adage holds true - we see the fault in the behavior of another because we find fault in that similar behavior in ourselves. That saying, "It takes one to know one", isn't just a clever saying. It is relevant truth! We can point out the sins of another so well because we can see the struggle we have with sins that emanate from the same willful nature!

The good news is the God made us right - and the creator of all things is capable of making us right again, even when our will isn't really willing to step aside all that easily. You and I give our will way too much credit - we give it way too much control. Instead of giving into our willfulness, it would behoove us to take that willfulness to God and ask him to 'rewire' the very thing that gives us so many issues! Just sayin!


Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

Do me a favor

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care—then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Philippians 2:1-4) Has God's love made ANY difference in your life? What is that difference? Most of us will likely say that our lives were changed for the good, while others will say there was a dramatic change. Some left behind lifestyles marked by all manner of outward sin - like drug addiction, alcoholism, prostitution, or even thievery. There are many that will admit the things they left behind were just a bit subtler - what we can call inward sin - things like jealousy,