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Posts Tagged ‘renewal’

There are moments; precious moments when I am as lucid about my sin as I can be. My transgressions stand in complete contradiction to my worth as an image bearer of God. They are completely irrational given the infinite loving-kindness I have been mercifully shown by my Holy Creator. I see sin for the dead-end it truly is.

My excuses, my justification, my dismissal and denial are all exposed for the cheap, hallow attempts at dodging guilt they most certainly are.

My longing to be renewed, re-made, re-aligned – restored – reaches a fever pitch.

It is in those moments that I am most ready to have God be God in my life. I am far more interested in His will than I am in my own. I cling to His intentions for me that I first grasped when I first entrusted my life to Him.

It is in those moments I am willing to be changed; saved from the consequences of my best apart from God.

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Alluring destinations of all kinds bid us come; hide away, escape the dreariness or difficulty of life, if only for a moment, and find rest.

For centuries, the people of God found respite and renewal with Him in literal locales. God, of course, is everywhere present; but He chose to “show up” in particular ways and particular places … a burning bush, a mountaintop, twin pillars of fire and cloud, a wooden chest and eventually a temple in a city (Mount Zion/Jerusalem).

That God would “show up” at all in a broken world full of rebels is astounding; but that He would leave the infinite glory of Heaven, “take on flesh and dwell among us” (John 1:14), defies all expectations. And still there’s more … The Creator of all things wasn’t content to merely be WITH us. He ultimately chose to be IN all who would receive Him by grace through faith (John 14:16-17; Eph 1:13).

Our greatest place of rest isn’t a place, it’s a people. There is no more stunning destination on earth than a community of Christ-followers inhabited by the Spirit of God living as the people of God displaying the love of God to the glory of God!

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I hide my sin two ways. One keeps it out of site but leaves it to spread like a cancer. The other way covers and quarantines my sin so that its deadly affect can be remedied.

The first is an elaborate strategy of deception, smoke and mirrors if you will. Draw attention to what is right and good so as to conceal what lingers in the dark. Offenses are swiftly justified, minimized, sanitized or denied, leaving transgressions and their ravaging effects untreated.

What an exhausting exercise in futility! Though hidden from plain site, sin never escapes the holy gaze of God. He can’t help but shed light on it in hopes of repentance, a change of heart.

Rather than striving on my own to cover what cannot go unseen, why not ask God to cover what cannot go unaddressed? He invites me to bring what is hidden into plain view. “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow.” (Isaiah 1:18)

Honest admission, confession transfers my transgressions to the only One who can conceal them. He does so with His own shed blood, the ransom for my rebellion. “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6)

“Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to Him at a time when He may be found.” (Psalm 32:6)

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