Why Such Choices?


Why does someone say there is no God? Why does someone believe they cannot be saved, even though the testimony of the Gospel says otherwise?

Why does someone continue to trust their own strength, even though they have seen themselves fail miserably time after time, and have no hope that that will change? Instead of looking up to God and asking for help, in everything, they resign themselves to failure.  


Scarred through and through, they continue to lead a helpless and hopeless life.  


Why?


I don’t have a PhD in psychology. I don’t even have a Masters of anything. But I’m going to take a stab at the answer with one word, and I am absolutely sure I’m right.  


PRIDE 

Freedom or Chains


I wanted to be careful about how I wrote this. But then the Lord reminded me, “Every word of God can be misused”. So I’ll just write what I saw and let be what will be.  

It is not the size of our sin that condemns us to hell. It is the size of our faith to receive his desired gift of forgiveness.  


We were dead in our trespasses. We can’t possibly know the grandeur of that death. Likewise, with his forgiveness we are offered eternal life. We can’t possibly know the grandeur of what he holds in his hand.  


But what if someone holds onto remorse and shame, thus spitting into the hand who offers life? Hiding in the shadows, not daring to draw near.  


Do you believe? Then take his joy. Take his strength. Take his fearless abandon. Take his dedication. Take his wisdom. Take his godly and never ending love.  


Aren’t those the things that are spawned by the forgiveness he offers? For by those things we approach the throne of the living God with confidence. There we learn things we did not know. There we are strengthened by the touch of his hand or the smile on his face. But without forgiveness, God remains no more than a religion. And the shadow of death is our closest friend.  

Proof By Adversity?


http://www.zocalopublicsquare.org/2016/05/25/frivolous-humanities-helped-prisoners-survive-communist-romania/ideas/nexus/

(I tried to comment on the writer’s article in his page.  But his page would not accept a WordPress login.  So I make this entry in my blog in the hopes that it will reach the writer.  Who knows, perhaps it will also reach a soul somewhere else.)

In that writers article he describes how the government legislates its own morality.  The writer says that he found the government’s methods and its operating premise to be at fault, simply by humanity’s insistent efforts to circumvent unjust laws.

The writer says this: “If the study of literature or history were really that pointless, a government trying to control the minds of its subjects would not go to the trouble of putting humanities students and professors in jail.”

Isn’t the same thing true of Jesus?  Part of the proof of his royalty is the venomous activity of his enemies.  And if all of Jesus is true, proved by the activity of his enemies alone, wouldn’t it be wise to consider his words.  If he is truly life are we wise to ignore him?

Pathetic Silence


It makes me sad to look about.
Our cities under siege.
The “dead” in homes,
Lives like drones,
Amazed at what they see.

The Devil comes and takes away.
No words are spoken.
No!

“No way!

If we speak,
He’ll take us too!
Then, tell us what we all should do.
We’ll leave it to the likes of you.”

The bully on the playground
Pounds and pounds and pounds.
Daring those who watch him work
To make a single sound.

Is this the life you want to lead?
Are shadows giving what you need?
Why can’t you see the pitiful plight
Of he one who bleeds and has no fight?

Be silent then!
Your days well spent,
Watching Death on your TV.
The challenge is there in front of you.
The challenge is up to you and me.

See how the gospel is hidden.
Even surely by those who know!
See how the evil one has risen.
Without striking a single blow.

Mutual Tears?


The warnings for sin have gone out since man was first made.  Sin is death.  When you have committed sin there will be consequences to follow.

Such consequences as Sin rears up will often charge you with horrifying and utterly devastating sadness.  Eventually, hopefully in this life, you will cry great tears of sadness for the things you have done.

But when you cry because you have broken life’s rule, do not expect others to give you a loving embrace.  You have no right to expect them to cry with you.  Those tears belong to you.  They are not tears of suffering for the name of Christ.  They are not tears a man may cry when unjustly persecuted.  They are tears that you have brought death upon yourself.

Face reality.  Seek strength.  Strive to understand.  All the while, get up on your shaky legs and start walking.

The Lord loves mercy, yes.  But mercy comes in a variety of forms.  Our need may not be as we perceive it.

The Now.


A man doesn’t look at his watch to see what time it was.  His watch can only tell him what time it is.  It doesn’t tell him what time it’s going to be.  It tells him what time it is.  You can’t lay hold of the past.  And you can’t lay hold of the future.

Regret reminds him of what time it was.  Perhaps we regret that we cannot have the good times we had.  Or we may regret that we have destroyed joy, for ourselves or others.

What is regret but a knowledge of what is right.  A knowledge of appropriate restraint.  Truth restrains us in “the now”.  You’re not going back my friend.  And as you reach the future you bring the old man with you.  What you did back then, you are doing now. You need a change of heart, not a change of time.

We may look at the past desiring some pleasant time.  Or we may look at the past, regretting abject folly.  But we can only do this looking from “the now”.  The man who lives in Nostalgia does not know what time it is.  Regrettably, this is to his constant loss.

Nostalgia will always be beyond our grasp.  But regret can happily thrive in our house.  All the while, truth says something imperative.  “I am here.  Come live with me.  I am here to offer you life.”

It is impossible to fix a misdeed.  The best we can possibly do is offer reparation.  And the cost of repair is vastly more than a man’s resources will ever afford.  You can’t undo anything, whether good or bad!

Man thinks that by paying for his horrible mistakes, he becomes a righteous man.  Perhaps he thinks if he regrets his past enough, there is some reparation made.  As if suffering  produces anything of value.  But no action on our part undoes the death we have born.

Christ Jesus is in the now.  No matter what clock you look at, there is the Lord holding out his hand to help stop the engine of regret.  Will you reach out and take his help?

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One thing I will say about regret, it is a useful tool.  It teaches humility.  And in an odd way, it gives validity to the warnings we offer to those who are as blind as we. 

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The man who climbs out of an open cesspool is happy to warn those who are walking toward disrepair.  Blinded by the darkness of their mind, they stagger toward loss.  And isn’t such a man rather frantic as he tries to help his brother?

Their response doesn’t matter.  It doesn’t matter if they hate him.  It doesn’t matter if they give him some superficial glory.  He knows from experience they are about to encounter regret.  He busies himself to remind his brother of the now.

Christ is in the now.   And he alone is The Living pure truth.  Listen to him.  His wisdom and strength are ever-present.

As the blind are walking toward the pit.  As they are falling into it.  As the shock of their disrepair dawns on their dull minds.  As they thrash about to release themselves from their present aberration.  As their hands lay hold of solid ground.  As they pull themselves out, covered with stench.  And as they sit perplexed on the edge of the pit, wondering what to do next, or how they could possibly have been so stupid.

Christ is in the now.

Christ is in the now.

He is not just a historical figure.  He is the now.

If you have freed yourself from a certain pit, I promise you, without Christ there’s another one waiting just in front of you.

Answer to yourself, what time is it?

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The usefulness of this post depends entirely on the reaction of those who read it.