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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!


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