Right now, our house is a mess!
- Have you ever cleaned your house for company?
- Put things away that aren’t normally that well organized?
- Organized some rooms that have been neglected for awhile. Felt like you were making progress in creating order in your home.
Then, when the ” company” (family members) came, they got working on a project. This time, it was crown molding for the entry hall and living room.
The project is almost done. The cutting and nailing was done yesterday by my brother and Ron. The painting by his wife, Patty. They left this morning. With all the crown molding in place, Ron did the caulking today. Tomorrow or Thursday, he will do the touch-up painting and the job will be done! Meanwhile, I’ll be at work both days.
OUR MESS WILL SOON BE FIXED
Then, we’ll have the living room back in place and will do some decorating for Christmas. However, right now we have a mess! Which gets me back to where I started. I hate messes! The more mess I have around, the harder it is for me to think.
Between living each day and working some days, I’ve had a harder time keeping up with life…and messes since we moved back here. I make a little headway in dealing with all the stuff, then I fall behind again.
The combination of not having the physical energy to do all the things I need and want to do has been frustrating as I have gotten into this 6th decade. Just another part of living in a fallen world!
During this struggle, I’ve been coming to the point where I can appreciate new aspects of God’s grace.
WE WANT TO LIVE INDEPENDENT OF GOD
My personal bent…and that of most of us, is toward independence. I want to do things the way I want, when I want to do them.
This could be the mantra of most of the human race…at least according to Romans 1:18ff. We aren’t inclined to accept gifts unless we feel that in some way, we have earned them…at least partially.
Could there be anyone more difficult to accept a gift from than a Holy God? I mean, a truly Holy God who is blameless and is not faking His “holiness”. Of course, we don’t deserve a gift from Him. That is the point!
WE WANT TO DO SOMETHING TO EARN OUR WAY!
Especially when it comes to salvation. We want to earn our way to God, at least in some way. If we believe in Biblical salvation, we at least want to earn our sanctification! We come to God to be “saved” because at some level, we have realized that our sinfulness and His holiness cannot live together in the same place!
I don’t know about you, but it has taken me a long time to actually “get” that I really am sinful. My self-righteousness reaches to my core! I don’t like to think about the fact that I’m depraved. That sin and brokenness reaches every part of me. I am a mess!
On the other side, God is holy. He is totally and completely pure and blameless. He can’t be around sin.
One of our pastors uses the illustration of the sun and ice. God’s holiness is like the sun. My sinfulness is like ice. It can’t exist as ice in the presence of the sun! It isn’t personal. It just isn’t possible! Ice melts in the presence of the sun and is no longer ice. In God’s presence, I can’t remain the same. I can’t exist in my present sinful state!
So for many of us, we understand our need for basic salvation, at least on some level. The truth is:
- We need Christ to make us into a new creation.
- We need Him to make us alive in Him because we are naturally dead spiritually without Him.
ONLY ONE WHO COULD PAY FOR SIN: HOLY GOD-MAN JESUS CHRIST
So His grace has reached down to save us. He paid for our sin. Now, His perfect record of obedience is ours. We are dressed in His righteousness if we are “in Christ”. On the cross, He took on Himself our record of sin and failure. That is what He died to pay for. That is what He was talking about when He said, “It is finished.”
He paid the record for all sin of all time…that means He paid for all the sin you would ever commit in your lifetime. It is simple…and yet, for many of us, complicated. We are independent! We don’t want to accept charity…no matter how much we need it!
This is the simple message of Christmas! …and Easter and each Sunday as well. Hallelujah! God is with us. He is risen! The ransom has been paid for sin…and it was accepted! He came to us, in our mess, to save us. He died. Now He is alive again!
Sadly, we see ourselves as being on our own, so to speak, to live the Christian life. But we’ll go there next time.
I’ve gone on about the “Basics” and don’t want to lose your attention for some really great news about living the Christian life…to be continued…
Are you “in Christ”?
- How does that affect your daily life?
- Your living in guilt?
- Your feelings of inadequacy?
- Your issues with shame?