Psalm 130:3-4 Destroyed Files

If you, LORD, kept a record of sins, Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you. Psalm 130:3-4

All over the world, hundreds of thousands of records are kept on file to remember many things. Some of these files are pictures to remember people and good things that have occurred in the past. Many are files of things done, such as paying taxes, to be able to later prove what was done.

Lawyers are constantly going through files looking for information. Some are searching for proof against a person, while others are searching for proof for the person’s benefit. These records can help or hurt a person.

One set of files that many people keep on record is those of sins that they have done. The devil, like the attorney, is searching through those files trying to prove they have done something wrong. He likes to remind the person of past faults. When looked at, that person does not have a chance to stand before God and serve Him. He is full of sin.

When Jesus died on the cross, He took every one of those files and nailed them to the cross. They were cast out as far as the east is from the west, so that they were no longer remembered.

At the point that you have believed that Jesus had done this for you, your files were destroyed. Jesus has chosen to forgive you of all of your sins. Those files no longer exist. Regardless of what the devil or this world may say, you are now clean before God.

When that file of sins in your life was full, you were not allowed to go before God. God cannot be in the presence of sin.  However, because of what Jesus has done for you, you now have the ability to go before God and serve Him.

Each day look to the forgiveness Jesus has given you. Rejoice in what He has done for you. Then seek ways to serve God with all of your heart, soul, mind and strength. God is for you, not against you.

I pray today that you will know the forgiveness Jesus provides; that you will know that Jesus has removed all sin in your life; that you will use your life to serve God; and that you will honor God with your life.

Little Leaks Can Become Big Problems

About a month ago I had to do a job on my house that was no fun. I had to re-shingle my roof. And when I say I had to do it, it means that I was the one who physically re-shingled the roof. I did not pay someone else to do it for me, though I wish I could have done that.

Inside the house we had several locations that were leaking some in the ceiling. One spot was so bad that if it rained very much at all, there was a steady stream of water dropping down. This had been occurring for nearly a year. Some of the ‘small’ leaks had been occurring for over a year, and for the most part were just ignored.

My wife and I talked with several companies that does roofing and each cost way more than we could even think about paying any time soon. The cost of doing it myself was about one-fourth of the cost of the lowest charging company. Definitely worth doing it myself.

I was a little nervous about doing the job myself. The roof has several sun lights, bathroom vents, a heater vent, fireplace vent, and attic vents. That is a lot of things to work around, even though the roof is not steep at all and easy to work on.

Along with that, I have done re-shingling only two or three times in the past and those times were under the supervision of someone who was experienced, and the most recent time was about 15 years ago.

After praying a lot about it, I felt that I needed to do it myself and trust God to guide my hands in the job. Looking at the job, it originally looked like a two-day job. In the end it took two days of sunup to sundown work, plus several six to eight-hour days of work to complete the job.

I was blessed one day with about fifteen college students being there to help out. Each day I had several of my own boys and one of my girls helping out. I also had a few days of some of their friends helping out.

As we began to pull up the shingles, which should not have been difficult, we started to have problems. The shingles were stapled down, so much harder to pull up, and then we had to go through and pull all of the staples up. A very slow painful process.

Underneath of the shingles that were pulled up, we started to have to remove may different pieces of the decking that were rotted out, several of which a worker stepped on and it broke.

With a lot of back-breaking work, the job was finished. The roof is now re-shingled and is in good repair. There are no more leaks, and we have had some very severe rains to prove that.

Now why do I tell you all of this story? What is the purpose of this posting?

Glad you asked!

Looking back over time that we have lived in this house, we have seen signs of leaks for several years. There were little wet spots in several locations whenever it rained extremely hard. Since it did not leak every time it rained, or at least did not appear to leak, the leak was ignored. I did take note of it, and knew it would be a problem some day, but did not do anything about it, just left it.

One thing to note was just because I did not see the sign of leaks when it was a light rain, did not mean it was not leaking. It was just that the attic area was not wet enough to let it seep through to the ceiling and be shown. The attic area was still getting wet and causing damage.

The damage being done was slow, but steady. Little by little the decking was being rotted away until it would fall apart and be worthless.

How does this apply to life?

Again, glad you asked!

If I would have taken time to find the leak on the roof and make the minor repairs, the major repairing of the entire roof may not have been needed. It was in ignoring the small problems that the major problem came up.

In life, there can be small problems that creep into our lives. Little things that come up and begin to create damage in our lives. Paul tells us to not give the devil a foothold. Although this is talking about holding onto anger, it can be in many other areas in our lives.

Allowing yourself to have a little taste of sinful pleasure can lead to a greater following of that sin. Each time you tell a lie, it becomes easier to tell another one. Each time you look at something you should not look at it, it becomes easier to look at it again. Each time you say something you should not, it becomes easier to say it again.

All of these things may not look that bad in the moment of here and now, but they will cause problems later in life. Letting little sins in your life, will make room for larger, more open sinning. In the end it will pull you away from God further and further. There can come a point when you will no longer hear from God. When that happens, you begin to no longer live for God. The ‘little’ problem has become a major problem. As in the case of my roof, the small leak eventually caused major damage.

Starting today, be willing to throw off the sin that can entangle you. Embrace Jesus and His ways of living. If there is any ‘small’ leak in your life of sin, get it taken care of immediately. Do not allow it to build up in your life and cause major destruction and destroy you.

Jesus is here today to forgive you of your sins. The Holy Spirit is here today to guide you and give you strength to turn away from all sin. They will make the needed minor repairs now if you let them.

 

Psalm 119:11 How To Keep From Sin

I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you. Psalm 119:11

The world does not want any person to live any different than the others. Satan and this world does not want anyone to state that there are some solid rules that they must live by. Since this is the case, both Satan and those in the world will strive to get believers to live in the same way they do, living in sin.

Living in sin, or even sinning once in a while, is going against God and His Word. It is ignoring what God has said and placing self on the throne of life.

Those who ignore God’s word live as though they are in control of their own lives. They believe that they know best on how to live life.

The majority of believers know that they are not supposed to sin and strive to not sin against God. However, every believer still struggles with sin. Many wonder why they cannot overcome a sin in their life.

The psalmist gives great insight into how to keep from sinning against God. He states that he hides God’s word in his heart to keep from sinning.

Hiding God’s Word in your heart is memorizing His word. It is not only memorizing His Word, but applying it to your life.

There are people in the world who study the Bible because of its great quality of literature, and they memorize great portions of it, but they do not believe in God and still live, purposefully in sin. They reject what the Bible says for their own lives.

Hiding God’s Word in your heart is taking it to heart and make it a part of your own life.

When you are so focused on God and His Word that you memorize and apply it to your life, you will not allow yourself to be focused on self and sin. God’s Word is alive and will give you strength and direction to turn away from sin, but you must accept it and live by it. God’s Word must be in your heart, a part of your life and blood, what keeps you going.

How do you take God’s Word? Something you must read each day.

Or is it a necessary part of your life, giving you strength to overcome sin?

I pray today that you will know God’s Word better; that you will make God’s Word a part of your life; that you will live by God’s Word; and that God will give you strength to keep from sin.

Psalm 97:10 Love And Hate

Let those who love the LORD hate evil, for he guards the lives of his faithful ones and delivers them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 97:10

Two things that are commonly talked about by many people are love and hate. Non-believers are very quick to tell believers that they are to show love and not hate. Most believers will agree with them in that they should not show any hate towards any person.

Jesus had said that believers are to love their enemies. So the statement of loving people is true and strong.

The world interprets some things as hate, when in reality it is love. If a believer speaks out against a sin or hates some type of sin, it is automatically interpreted that he hates the person. Hating sin has nothing to do with whether a person loves another person or not.

The psalmist said that anyone who loves God, must hate evil. All evil is sin and all sin is evil.

The challenge many believers have is what they call evil. Generally people think of evil as extreme horrible sins, such as murder, rape, extreme violence, and other ‘major’ sins.

God calls all sin evil. Right alongside of murder is also telling lies, gossip, jealousy, pride, and many other ‘little’ sins. All of these are also evil.

Believers must not hate any person, and many are guilty of that, but they must hate the actions and evil. You must hate evil so much that you turn away from it. Do not look on it, do not think about it, do not touch it.

God is pure and holy and cannot be around any sin or evil at all. Jesus was the perfect image of God and you were called to be just like Jesus. You are to live your life in a way that you run away from evil. Do not allow yourself to take part in any type of evil, no matter how large or small it is.

Where do you sit with evil?

Do you overlook small sins?

Or do you run from all sin?

I pray today that you will love God with all of your heart; that you will hate sin as God hates sin; that you will love people as God loves people; and that your life will be like that of Jesus.

Psalm 81:6 A Removed Burden

I removed the burden from their shoulders; their hands were set free from the basket. Psalm 81:6

The psalmist, Asaph, looked back on when Israel had been delivered from Egypt. While in Egypt, they had been under the heavy burden of slavery. They were not allowed to make their own decisions or live their lives the way they wanted too. It was a heavy burden to bear living like that, but God had removed that burden in the deliverance.

Although the Israelites had to deal with many different difficulties while enslaved in Egypt, Asaph lists everything as one burden. That one burden was slavery.

Although slavery of human beings by another person is still found in different parts of the world, this is a different type of slavery. Not every person is enslaved to another person against his will, as the Israelites were in Egypt.

There is one burden that every person is enslaved to, unless they have been set free. That burden is sin.

From the time of birth every person is enslaved with the burden of sin. It is a bondage that no person can escape from on his own. Someone else has to come in and break the chains of that bondage.

Many people will try to say that they are not in bondage to anyone or anything. Yet, they are unable to stop doing certain things, whether they are actions, words, or thoughts.

Think about your own life. What are some bad habits that you have in your life? Or what are some sins that you seem to do over and over?

These are the things you are enslaved to. These are the things you are in bondage to and cannot break free from on your own.

Just as God had broken the bondage of slavery off of the shoulders of the Israelites, God can break the bondages of sin off your shoulders.

Jesus is willing to forgive you of your sins, if you allow Him to and you repent. Then allow Him to take that bondage and toss it out. Do not pick up the chains of bondage to sin anymore. Be free. Keep your hands, mind and body free from the slavery of sin. Live for God.

I pray today that you will know the freedom Jesus has for you; that you will seek forgiveness of sins; that God will strengthen you to stay away from sin; and that you will live for God in every way possible in this life.

Psalm 73:2-3 Wanting What Others Have

But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold. For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked. Psalm 73:2-3

One thing that is very difficult for many people is watching others prosper and succeed. This becomes especially true when the method of prosperity is done in a very bad way.

The majority in the world do not think anything of being envious of someone else. It is looked as part of the human nature to desire and really want what someone else has. Commercials are geared to bring out that envy in a person. They strive to get a person to want something someone else has so bad that they will do anything they can to get it.

As believers, the view should be different. Asaph, the writer of this psalm, writes that he almost slipped in envy. Envy is another word for coveting, which God said that His people were not to ever do.

There are times when a believer can look at someone in the world and be envious of what that person has or can do. Watching someone go on vacations around the world, drive fancy cars, eat out at fancy restaurants, and have big bank accounts can bring about envy in a person. Believers often struggle with this, when the person is very prosperous with sinful activities. Many will question God as to why that happens.

Some in the church will also be filled with envy for another person’s abilities or position in the church.

You should look at what God has given you in Jesus Christ. You have life for all eternity. The world may have all the fancy cars and houses with big bank accounts, but they will never have the peace and life that Jesus provides. They only have today and tomorrow will be death for them for eternity.

Do not look at their wealth and desire it. Do not allow your feet to slip into the sin of envy. Look at God and the wealth of life that He provides. God provides more blessings than anything in this world can ever provide.

What do you desire today?

More of God?

Or more of this world?

I pray today that you will see all that God has given you; that you will not desire the things of this world; that you will be a witness of what Jesus has given; and that you will know the blessings of God.

Psalm 69:6 To Not Be A Disgrace To Others

Lord, the LORD Almighty, may those who hope in you not be disgraced because of me; God of Israel, may those who seek you not be put to shame because of me. Psalm 69:6

Families are often torn apart and shamed by the actions of one person. In some cultures, honor is held at such a high level in the family, that if a child does something wrong, the family will disown the child for life. That child will be considered dead in the eyes of the parents.

There are some cultures that if certain things are done by a family member, it is acceptable to kill that family member because of the extreme disgrace brought onto the family.

Disobedient children in a store often bring shame on the parent, who is attempting to control or calm them down. Parents who are called by the school teacher, are often ashamed of the actions of their child.

David had done some type of great sin right before he had written this psalm. He was asking God that all those who believed in Him, would not be disgraced or shamed because of what he had done wrong. He realized that his sin would reflect on others and have an effect on them.

It is often thought that a person’s own personal sin only affects himself and no one else. The reality is that it can bring disgrace upon other believers. When the world sees one believer sin, then they often  apply that sin to the whole community of believers. They try to say that God is not real and all believers are fake.

Along with not trying to disgrace God by sinning, try not to bring disgrace upon the community of believers by your actions. Live your life in a way that will bring honor to other believers, rather than disgrace.

As you live your life for God, it will bring strength and honor to other believers. It will lift them up as they see you living for God.

Will God or other believers be disgraced or ashamed by what you are saying or doing?

Or will God and other believers be honored with how you are living your life?

I pray today that you will live your life for Jesus; that you will bring honor to God; that you will not bring shame to God’s community of believers; and that you will be a shining light for Jesus in this world.