Avoiding It

The fall…

Avoiding It

July 26th, 2019

It’s interesting to note, in practically every other facet of our lives when we are aware of danger, when we know that something is threatening, when we come to the conclusion that there is risk involve; we consider the action, and in most cases will seek a means of avoiding the issue completely.

Why is it then, in our walk with the Lord that we don’t respond to peril with the same self preservation?

This makes no sense whatsoever!

It would make sense for us to pray more, study our bibles more, witness more, and fellowship with other believers more; if we realized that all of these thing serve to not only strengthen our faith, but prevent us from falling into the traps and pitfalls Satan enjoys ensnaring us with.

Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

Psalms 55:22 (NLT)

I love our men’s group at church on Wednesday evenings. They are an assembly of brothers who are completely honest about themselves and each other. They don’t hesitate sharing their deepest thoughts and what God is doing in their lives.

This most recent Wednesday evening, we talked about how we love to get in the way of God. No seriously, we do. Every single time we take it upon ourselves to determine the intended outcome, when we don’t first go to God and seek His advice on what He may want us to do, we get in the way.

Most Christians would agree that God is smarter than we are. Most of us who consider ourselves to be disciples of Jesus can attest to the fact that He is fond of doing things in His unique manner.

We will pray for something specific and then start out to accomplish that particular something WE FEEL God is leading us to. Only to find our plans and schemes thwarted by error and mishap. Frequently, after a period of wearing ourselves out trying to bail water from the boat as the hole in the bottom gets bigger and bigger; God comes along out of what seems nowhere and lifts us from our sinking condition and sets us on solid ground.

My hope is build on nothing less
Than Jesus blood and righteousness

Really?

We can sing it, but do we live it? Sadly, most of the time, most of us, don’t even come close to such a claim.

We can say “Jesus, only Jesus!” And see Him as our hope and salvation intellectually. And at the same time dismiss him practically.

When it comes time to putting our words into our actions, our performance on the ground tells the story of our hearts. The real story.

The Pharisees, who dearly loved their money, heard all this and scoffed at him. Then he said to them, “You like to appear righteous in public, but God knows your hearts. What this world honors is detestable in the sight of God.

Luke 16:14-15 (NLT)

When you really consider it, we should appreciate grace so much more than we do. Yes, we all understand that if it were not for grace we would never be able to measure up to the standard God has established, to exist in His presence. But when you consider how we continue to sin, doubt, and frankly rebel the instruction given us; without grace there to cover us, we’d all be doomed!

No, I’m not singling out any of us. We all “slip and fall”. Let’s go back to that passage.

Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

Psalms 55:22 (NLT)

He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.” This is what we need to focus in on. Why do we slip and fall, constantly?

As so often is the case, the answer is right there in the Word of God…

“Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you.”

We don’t

The simple instruction of giving our burdens to the Lord we fail to comply with on a regular basis. He says, if we do this, He will take care of us. The explanation for this behavior escapes me. I don’t understand how I can know this, and yet constantly find myself outside of compliance with the direction found in the Word of God. Clear as the sun rising in the morning, the answer is there, but I chose to ignore it, or maybe I just don’t take it literally, which would bring up an entirely different set of issues!

Bottom line is, I’m just as confused and frustrated as the Apostle Paul was, when he wrote…

I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate. But if I know that what I am doing is wrong, this shows that I agree that the law is good. So I am not the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.

And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can’t. I want to do what is good, but I don’t. I don’t want to do what is wrong, but I do it anyway. But if I do what I don’t want to do, I am not really the one doing wrong; it is sin living in me that does it.

I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death?

Romans 7:15-24 (NLT)

Who will free me”? Jesus. He and the grace he pours out upon me. The same grace he pours out upon you as well. If it were not for that grace, we’d be literally in a world of hurt.

Avoiding it

As Paul demonstrates so clearly, we are not ever going to completely avoid those pitfalls that come as a result of living in a body made of flesh. Grace is there to cover this inadequacy in ourselves. Thank you, Jesus!

But if we want to avoid it, how can we minimize our scraped knees and bloodied elbows along the way?

Surrender!

Give it up. It’s not our burden to bear. If we really give our “burdens to the Lord”, he’s made it clear that “he will take care of” us. The promise is only as good as our ability to commit to the requirement. We must first surrender the burden that isn’t ours to begin with, get out of God’s way and let him take charge and then when he tells us to do something don’t second guess Him, just do it.

We can’t do it better, we don’t have the ability to think it through fully, He has a master plan for us and he didn’t consult with us when he put it together, so step back and let him guide us in the steps that he has plotted for us.

That is when you’ll begin to see. That you’re “Avoiding It”.

In the Grace of Jesus!
kip…

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