So in todays blog I wanted to hit on a topic that impacted me heavily when I started my walk with the Lord. And that topic is over Repentance. Now I honestly think that this word is used too much in the sense of just its word, and not so much its definition or more so the application that flows from it. The definition of repentance is to literally turn away from something. So as a Christian this should be something that is not taken so lightly because we know for certain that we are to focus on Christ, nothing else and thats the beautiful picture of repentance! But wait, how can repenting of a sin be a beautiful thing? Because to turn away from a sin is to turn to Christ! That is why its a beautiful thing, because there is nothing more important in our lives than to give glory to God. And there is so much glory given to the Lord when we see our sin and say 'no!' to remember the Gospel and realize that there is a much greater thing to focus on than our own sins. And thats to focus on the one who took those very sins to the cross, giving us the ability to repent and not have to be chained by anything in this world! Starting to see the beauty yet? The Gospel is beautiful and our Lord is beautiful. So lets look at repentance as a beautiful thing, not the sin that we are turning from but the ACT of turning towards the Lord who payed for it.
Todays topic I think is an interesting one because its one of those topics that seem obvious but is equally ignored. And its the topic of controlling our emotions.
James 1:19-21 "Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God. 21 Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls."
Now the way that James breaks this down paints a picture of control doesn't it? And I think if we are honest its a picture of some serious control. Hearing the person out, not throwing your opinions out as fast as you can, not getting angry at the drop of a button. These are common struggles among Christians, and they are fueled by our emotions. So if we are seeing a pattern in our lives of our decisions and responses being ruled by our emotions, how do we train ourselves to not be? Or better yet, what should be the replacement, the deciding factor of how we react and respond?
The answer is given to us in the passage of James that we already read. The Word of God. Through reading our bibles we can see the correct characteristic that a child of God is supposed to have, we see that through Christ, the apostles and others. We see an attitude that isn't so focused on what they think, but what a Holy and True God would want them to think. Do you see the difference? Its one thing to say 'Well I disagree' compared to 'Gods Word says otherwise'
So the idea is to refocus our driving point that makes us do the things that we do. Emotions are fast acting, reckless and harming if not kept under control and they can keep us from doing what needs to be done, and the only thing that can truly keep them under correct control is the Lord. So I want to encourage you today to evaluate who has more influence on your actions, you... Or the Lord?
I believe that the topic of Gods authority is a seriously dreaded topic to go over. But why? Wouldn't it seem natural to say that God has all authority? I would say so. So why is this such a dreaded topic? Well I've asked the easy question of shouldn't it seem natural? So now lets ask the harder question, what if God wants you to give up something you love? Or to do something that would be the opposite of the plans you've made for your future? Seems harder doesn't it?
So it is indeed easy to say that the Lord has all authority, until He makes you have to live it. And when I think of the authority of God and how great it is I can't help but to think of Job. Now through reading about Job we can clearly see that his authority over his life was so greatly overpowered by the Lords. Job lost it all, his livestock, children, wife and home. Thats huge. Most of us will live our lives not experiencing half of what Job went through, but what was Job's response? Did he take the situation and hate God? despise His authority or chalk it up to dumb luck? Job 42: 2 “I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted." Even though it hurt, even though it wasn't what he wanted for his life, Job now knew more than ever that the authority of God will stand.
So I want to encourage you today to remember who is in charge of your life, give credit to Whom it is due, and be ready for your wants to not always be matching up to the Lords, because those are the ones that truly shape us into something better, shaping us into a better image of His Son Jesus Christ.