Hey…Take a Shower!

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Ever feel guilty, ashamed, embarrassed, frustrated asking forgiveness for the same sins over and over and over and over again?

Every once in a while, I might figure out a new way to sin, but most of my sins are very predictable – lust, jealousy, anger, pride, etc.

There are times I wonder if God ever gets to the point where he says, “You again? This again?! How many times are we going to have to do this?”

Showers. I like showers. They make me feel clean. I like the feeling of clean.

I shower regularly because I get dirty regularly. I don’t do particularly dirty things that get me dirty like working in the yard, or chopping down trees, or marching through the swamps.

It’s just living in this world, I get dirty just by being in it.

Wouldn’t it be dumb if we ever said, “Dirty again? How many times are we going to have to shower?!”

Well…for everyone’s sake…everyday.

That’s what daily prayer time is. It’s a daily cleansing from our sins. Most of us don’t go out of our ways finding new and creative ways to sin. Just by going through the day, living in this world, and being human – we sin every day. And because we sin every day, we need to be forgiven every day.

Thank God when we ask for forgiveness, God forgives us every time. There’s no ceiling or limit to how many times God will forgive us.

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has he (God) removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12).

The dumbest thing we could do is not pray for forgiveness because as long as we’re in this world, we’re going to get dirty.

Being forgiven. I like being forgiven. Being forgiven makes me feel clean. I like the feeling of clean.

Don’t Do It

Screen Shot 2017-01-26 at 1.11.05 PM.pngMaybe it’s just me…but I have a suspicion that I’m not.

My thoughts and the desires of my heart sometimes are so horrifying, so wrong, so heinous it shocks¬†me…

The thing about these thoughts and desires is that they surface all on their own. They arise without bidding. I didn’t ask for these thoughts or desires. They just happen.

The issue is not that these thoughts and desires happen. That they do only goes to prove how right God is when he tells us “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure” (Jeremiah 17:9).

The crux of the problem comes down to whether we choose to allow these thoughts to hold us captive and whether we allow these desires to take residence in our hearts. It’s the¬†entertaining, welcoming, and giving space to these thoughts and desires that is the problem. For by giving these thoughts and desires residence and space, sin is conceived, and sin – unless it is repented and checked – leads to sinful behavior.

So check yourself.

Don’t be ashamed that these thoughts and desires happen. That’s part of what it means to be a fallen creature.

But if you allow these thoughts and desires to take you captive and take up residence…well, that’s all on you.

Don’t Do Stupid

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When things are going well in the life of a church – the giving is good, the church board is healthy, the vision is clear, there is growth and vitality, etc. – there are two sets of people who can derail all the great things God is doing: Staff and leaders.

It’s amazing how arduous, time-consuming, difficult it is to be in a position where growth and health is present. It takes years to build such an ethos and environment. And one person, with one stupid act, can derail the entire thing in minutes.

This typically happens in three arenas: money, sex, and relationships.

The Little Church on the Prairie finds herself in a healthy place. We are positioned for God to do some amazing things in the future.

I have been reminding both the staff and the elders, and most importantly me, “Please don’t do stupid things. Be pure and God-honoring in our dealing with God’s money, sex, and relationships with one another.”