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Posts Tagged ‘Justice turned away’

The echo of his words hung heavy in my heart. Stinging. Stabbing. Next morning, in full apology mode, he said “I’m sorry.” But isn’t he always?  After the fact.

When Sorry's Not Enough

Sorry isn’t a bad thing to say—if you mean it and if you aren’t constantly mouthing I’m sorry for the same offenses over and over again. There comes a time when sorry’s just not enough. There must be change.

When words erupt with the express intent of inflicting pain and harm utilized by a prior knowledge of the target’s weakness or scars—sorry’s not enough.

When behavior continually patterns itself in a manner that causes others to despair and lose hope—sorry’s not the correct response.

When troublesome behavior patterns or thought processes are pointed out and the person blames others or blows off the wisdom of God’s Word rather than listening and looking at their own heart—sorry’s not an option.

When there is no appetite for the Word of God, but a ferocious appetite to consume everything the world has to offer—sorry is a worthless excuse.

You can mouth sorry ‘til the cows come home, but nothing changes—not in the heart. And that’s where relational problems occur. Chanting I’m Sorry while the fog of ignorance of God’s Word smothers a deceived heart, rendering it incapable of understanding the hopelessness of habitual actions, while  continuing to slice and dice innocent bystanders with a fiery tongue.

God’s Word instructs “With our tongues we bless our Lord and Father; and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way. Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water?” (James 3:9-11 NAS)

Only five minutes of nightly news will qualify we live in a time where deceived, depraved hearts are the norm rather than the exception—even in the church.

“Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands far away; for truth has stumbled in the street, and uprightness cannot enter. Yes, truth is lacking…” (Isaiah 59:12-15 NAS).

Truth stumbled in the street

But we were not meant to live that way. To stay that way.

Coming to faith and trust is the Lord Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord isn’t about mouthing I’m sorry for my sins. Then like the person referred to in Corinthians, turning away from the mirror, forgetting what he looked like. We’re all sorry when we get caught with our fingers in the cookie jar. Anyone will mumble I’m sorry in order to dodge the consequences of wrong actions. And many kiddos have been raised to think I’m sorry is the magic phrase that dispels consequences.

And the Word warns, “They sow the wind, and they reap the whirlwind.” (Hosea 8:7 NAS).

Spring Tornado

Jesus knew God was going to raise Him from the grave three days later, but He carried the consequences of our sins and suffered God’s judgment that should have been yours and mine on that cruel cross. He bore the penalty—the guilty verdict—for every one of my sins and every one of yours. And we fool ourselves into thinking a brief I’m sorry quipped in the heat of an emotional moment at the altar makes nice? Makes saved?

We can’t make anything nice. We can’t save ourselves. We can’t change our actions or our hearts—only the Holy Spirit of God, given at the moment of choosing Christ, can and will change your heart.

So the questions are… Am I truly saved, but grieving the Holy Spirit by refusing to allow Him to change me? Or…Did I walk the aisle, get dunked in the water, by mouthing a trite I’m sorry, with no intention of or desire to have Him change my life? Was it just an emotional moment of conviction that would hopefully keep me from frying in hell forever? But I certainly didn’t give Him permission to change my heart, my life, my attitude, and my mind. About anything. No sir, no holy-roller, religious freak for me. Nuh-un. I’m okay, just like I am.

Precious reader, if you find yourself answering yes to either of the above questions there is still hope. But there’s a problem. God is not willing for any to perish. That’s why He has delayed the return of the Lord Jesus—giving you time to come to the end of yourself and willingly give control of your life to Him—And that means change. That’s why Jesus gave us the gift of His Holy Spirit—to teach us—to transform us—to make us like Jesus. And that means we’re gonna be changing ‘til Jesus comes.

We all sin. We still live in natural or sinful bodies. But it’s the pattern of your life that counts. You can’t be a born-again child of God and continue to live and act in the same manner you did before you were saved.

The Word tells us, “Therefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. Now all these things are from God…” (2 Corinthians 5:17 NAS).

A truly born-again child of God will be the most miserable person on the planet if he/she attempts to keep walking in old behavior patterns. Their lives will bear no fruit. Oh, on the outside they may fool others for a time, but their souls will begin to look like parched Texas corn with no rain, who doesn’t fool God.

But God’s mercy is new every morning. His grace is still available. As long as there’s life and breath there’s hope. That’s why Jesus suffered and died—just for you, just for me.

Are you tired of saying I’m sorry? Are you tired of always feeling guilty and suffering shame? There’s hope. Jesus stands at the door of your heart and knocks (Revelation 3:20 NAS). Will you open the door and let Him make His home with you?

God is not willing

 

 

 

 

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