July 28, 2016
“It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.” Romans 7:21-23 Message
Sin … three letters that assault every human being who has ever lived. The Bible doesn’t minimize it’s path of destruction. No one is excluded. The Apostle Paul pulls back the curtain of every heart by revealing his own struggle .. battle .. and failure. The very “thing” he knows is good and right becomes in a matter of moments a willful act tainted with evil and soured with wrong. And God had it written down for our eyes to see .. our minds to store .. and to sober our hearts. You can’t fight this battle on your own .. with good intentions .. and self-determination. Your “old” nature will whisper for you to focus on doing good .. focusing on positive actions .. and downplaying what you did against what God said. You’ll even hear “but God forgives” .. and “grace covers your wrongs”. True .. but the cost of those words end up nailed on a cross. And then God breaks in .. He jumps off the pages with Jesus setting things “right” in your life. The struggles and battles will ambush you from time to time. Some battles seem unrelenting. Others lie in wait for just “that moment”. And then comes two words of indefatigable kindness: “Thank God”! Two words that consume the dominating power of sin and forge a path home. “Jesus can and does.” Sin does not get the last word over your life: Jesus does. He is the Way through all the contradictions in front of your life. Thank God … it only takes a moment.
“I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question? The answer, thank God, is that Jesus Christ can and does. He acted to set things right in this life of contradictions where I want to serve God with all my heart and mind, but am pulled by the influence of sin to do something totally different.” Romans 7:24-25 Message
Ken Chester: Grace-Gripped is sent to Grace-and-Truth cleared followers of Jesus (firstname.lastname@example.org)