Each of us goes our own way. This is so American, part of our culture. We are individualistic, every man for himself. A small example of this is the hoarding we’ve experienced recently with the outbreak of a deadly virus. Everyone fighting to put themselves first. This is not God’s way. This is not Christian. The Christian values two things: God and people, in that order. The Bible also tells us to consider placing others above ourselves. Mother Teresa received all her shoes from a thrift store. She chose the worst pair they had so others in need could have the better ones. She served people she may never meet by making this choice. They say her feet were a horrible sight because of the shoes she wore.
So yes, we’ve all gone astray, away from God. Each time I choose my own way and not God’s I pour out my sin upon Jesus hanging on the cross. God sees time differently than we do. We cannot escape time. We are inside it. God can see yesterday, today and tomorrow all at the same time because He created it. He is not bound by time like we are. So, when I sin could it be that God once again experiences the pain of the cross as Jesus bore the consequence of every sin? I believe this is so.
I see many taking for granted what God has done as they live their lives sloppily in sin saying it’s no bother because Jesus will forgive. This person doesn’t understand. This person isn’t transformed. This person likes forgiveness but ignores repentance. This is not the formula God offers us! This kind of person may think they have it made and they’re tricking and using God. What a surprise they will get later when they understand all they missed out on. The Christian life is a surrendering of oneself to God, a commitment to walk in God’s ways, putting others before oneself.
Jesus took on the iniquities, the sins of us all. This does not mean everyone is a follower of Jesus. This means the debt is paid. Knowing this and living this out are two very different things. Is God important enough to you that you’re willing to throw off your sin, to repent, to turn the other way and worship God, place God as your number one priority? If not, you are not a Christian.
Yes, the Christian still has temptations. The Christian will fall. What I’ve described feels like a cycle we go through over and over: we sin, we turn to God to confess our iniquity, we ask for forgiveness, we repent and ask God for strength and guidance to not sin. This is our battle while we’re here on this earth.
When we have repented, when we’ve been wiped clean by our Maker. We receive peace, joy, love, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness and self-control. These are things God gives us. We have a new mission and that mission has nothing to do with ourselves but everything to do with God and people. We have a derp longing for others to know and experience this freedom we have, the indescribable love of God. If there is anything good I assure you that God is in it.
Yes, we are all sheep who have gone astray. Let’s turn back today, live within the bounds God has set for us so we will not bring more consequences of sin into our world. Let’s repent and walk in God’s ways, not in our own way.