Don’t Deceive Yourself

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 1:8‭-‬9 ESV

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One of the things that I am trying to teach my children is to be honest when they do something wrong. Too often, when confronted with their sin, my children are adamant in their denial. I didn’t do it. Even though it is obvious that they are guilty. I reassure them that I am not mad but rather I just want them to be honest. I reaffirm my love for them and say that there is nothing they can do that will change that. I remind them that I will always forgive them even though there may be consequences. But for a child, the fear of punishment is strong and thus their adamant denials and failed attempts to cover up their own sins.

But isn’t this a commentary for the Christian?

There may be sins in your life that you are afraid to admit. There may be sins that you are afraid to even voice in your own head when praying to God. You may bury the sin deep in your memory, hoping that time will heal and the wrong will be mended. Or…you may even deny that a sin is a sin, attempt to justify the sin or try to divert God’s attention to “worse sinners”. But daddy he broke your ________.

The fact of the matter is that we can not hide our sins, we can not deny our nature, and we can not divert God’s attention. God knows our sin, but God is a God is grace. His love is not diminished because of your sin. God is faithful and just to forgive your sins and cleanse you from all unrighteousness. If Jesus is your Lord and Savior, don’t be afraid of your sin, but confess your sin and know the forgiveness of your loving heavenly Father. Don’t deny who you are and don’t deny who God is. You are a sinner, but God is a God of grace. Let Him heal you and love on you.

Amen.

You Are

You are holy,
we are not.
You are perfect,
we make mistakes.
You are love,
we are anything but that.
You are strong,
we are weak.
You are right,
we are wrong.

We have good intentions,
but Your plans always succeed.
We think we’re in control,
but You sit on the throne.
We try to take control,
but You rule over all.
We look to our knowledge,
but You have all wisdom.
We plot out our course,
but You are the Way.

Oh God,

We fall short.
We hurt one another.
We go astray.
We forget about You

On our own we are lost…

[Father God, in Jesus name, forgive us]
[My child, you are forgiven]

Oh God,

YOU are…

AWESOME!

The Pastor -|—

Morning devotions ~ Unclean and then clean

And behold, a leper came to him and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately his leprosy was cleansed. [Matthew 8:2-3]

I love this interaction between this leper and Jesus; for here I see my own sinfulness but also the grace and love of God.

Here we have the unclean; humbly and faithfully and boldly, coming to Jesus even though it was not socially acceptable for him to do so. Actually, it was against the Law. This unclean outcast desperately seeking cleansing, healing and restoration. And he demands nothing but rather throws himself at the mercy of Jesus.

IF you will…

And before Jesus even says a word Jesus lets his actions speak love and mercy by reaching out to touch that which no one would have dreamed of touching. And after the leper feels the touch of Jesus he hears those life giving words:

I will; be clean

And that’s it. This outcast is clean and restored and healed and brought back into communion with God. I imagine there was much joy for the leper following this act of love and mercy…

…and GRACE.

And you too, O sinner, are unclean. That’s right, I’m talking to you; the one reading this.
YOU are unclean.
YOU are a sinner.
YOU are separated from God.
And YOU are in need of healing. If you don’t agree with me then too bad, for you can’t escape this fact. But there is hope for there is Jesus. Just call out to God in the name of Jesus and you too will be cleansed.

So will you, O sinner, join me in calling out to God?

O God, if you will, you can forgive me. I am a sinner. I have hurt others and especially you. And I especially want to confess_________. Have mercy on me. Touch me. Restore me. Make me whole again. In the name of Jesus I pray. Amen.

And now, O sinner, hear the words of God:

My beloved child, I am more than willing, you are forgiven.

O sinner, rejoice and be glad. Through faith in Jesus you are made whole.

Praise be to God and Amen.

The Pastor -|—