I am a sinner. You are a sinner. Hopefully that doesn’t destroy your self-esteem because, it is a Bible fact. The Bible says, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).”
But lots of people have problems with that. If you begin trying to explain to someone that they need to have their sins forgiven, they might stop you and let you know they don’t think they are sinner. But we are… we all are.
The Psalmist spoke about our sin when he said, “How can I know all the sins lurking in my heart? Cleanse me from these hidden faults”(Psalms 19:12).
Think about that verse… “How can I know all the sins LURKING in my heart…”
That may not be a pretty picture but, it’s true. We do have sins lurking in our hearts.
Have you ever thought something that was bad and immediately thought, “Lord that was terrible!” It’s because we are sinners. This refers to the depravity of man.
But, the great news is, even though we are sinners, our sins can be forgiven. Regardless what sins are “lurking in our hearts…” We can be forgiven because of what Jesus did on the cross!
Today, regardless what is in our hearts, we can go to Jesus knowing that if we will repent, we can be forgiven… regardless how ugly the sin is that lurks in our hearts… Thank God for forgiveness of sin!
Have you ever thought that you messed up so bad that God doesn't love you? We might think there are certain sins we can commit that God can't forgive us of but that's not true. God loves us regardless.
In Romans 8:38, the apostle Paul said, "And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[e] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love."
Think about that verse…"Nothing….NOTHING…can ever separate us from God's love…"Nothing..
So if you think you've messed up so bad that God can't love you, you are wrong. God loves you.
Today, maybe you need to accept God's love. If you will pray and humbly ask, Jesus will come into your heart and you will experience God's love.
Maybe you need to love someone else. Maybe someone has made a mistake and you have been unable to forgive. Maybe you need to grant forgiveness because nothing can separate someone from God's love.
Again, Paul says, "And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[e] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love."
Who is your boss? To answer that question you might immediately think of your boss at work. Are, if you are self-employed you might smile and say, "I am my own boss!"
If you are a Christian, you have a boss and He is the Holy Spirit. In Romans 8:9, the apostle Paul said, "But you are not controlled by your sinful nature. You are controlled by the Spirit if you have the Spirit of God living in you."
Think about that verse…"you are controlled by the Spirit if you the Spirit in you." If you have accepted Christ as your Savior, you have the Spirit within you. But, you must allow the Spirit to control you. And if the Spirit controls you, your life will produce the fruit of the Spirit.
And, what is the fruit of the spirit? In Galatians 5:22-23 Paul said, "the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness…So if the Holy Spirit is your boss, your life will produce the fruit of the spirit.
So, is your life marked by love? Joy? Peace? Patience? Kindness? If you are like me you will say, "some times." My old flesh jumps up and controls me at times. Today, lets determine to allow the Holy Spirit to control us.
I wonder how many words will be spoken today? Think about….from TV to radio, to business…how many words will be spoken? Now, let’s go a step farther…how many bad words…critical words…how many “F bombs” will be dropped? There is no way of knowing but, it will be way more than it should be.
We are living in a very negative, hateful, judgmental, irreverent culture. People use the “F” word routinely. The Republicans criticize the Democrats. The Democrats criticize the Republicans. People on talk-shows yell at one another.
We all should do what the Psamist did… He said, “I am determined not to sin in Whst I say.” If all of us did that, the world would be a FAR better place.
Today, refrain from using the “F” word.
Today, don’t gossip.
Today, don’t judge Hugh Freeze.
Today, don’t complain about Washington…do something to helo someone.
Today, instead of criticizing, encourage.
Today, instead of yelling, love.
Determine not to sin with your mouth.
There is a saying that I used to hear kids say and it was “You’re not the boss of me.” It meant, “You don’t tell me what to do.”
In Romams 6:12, Paul said essentially the same thing about sin. Paul challenged us, “Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires” (Romans 6:12).
Notice Paul said, “Do not let sin control you…” We are all sinners and we all slip but Paul is saying we shouldn’t let sin own us…control us. Ok, practically speaking, what does thst mean? It means we need to be disciplined enough to stay away from things that can cause us to sin.
What are you most tempted by? Is it sex? Maybe alcohol? Maybe you have a temper? All of us face different temptations. That is part of being human but, we don’t need to let it control us. Today, be aware of what tempts you and stay away from it. Don’t let sin control you.
Do you ever think that no one loves you? Do you ever think that no one cares? Sometimes, when the devil gets in our heads, he can lead us to think some crazy things.
Maybe you are going through a divorce and Satan has you thinking no one loves you. Maybe someone broke up with you and it has you thinking no one loves you. Maybe a parent said something really ugly to you and it has you thinking no one loves you.
If you have thought that, you are wrong because Jesus loves us. Paul said in Romans 5:6-8, “When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”
Think about those lines…”God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners…” We had done nothing to merit God’s love to us. But Jesus loved us….even while we were sinners.
So, Jesus loves you. There is no question about it. If He didnt love you, He wouldn’t have died for you. And, I believe there are others who love you. Satan just wants to make you think no one does.
“Jesus loves me this I know.
For the Bible tells me so.
Little ones to Him belong.
Thou art weak but He is strong.
Yes, Jesus loves me,
Yes, Jesus loves me.
Yes, Jesus loves me
The Bible tells me so.”
None of us LIKE tough times. I mean, if you had your choice of an easy or a tough day, most of us, if not all of us, would take the easy day. But the Bible says adversity is good for us.
In Romans 5:3-5, the apostle Paul said,
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment.”
“We can rejoice when run into trials…”. Let’s be honest, most of us are not happy when we encounter trials. But, Paul says they help us grow. Paul says trials develop endurance and endurance produces strength of character. How does that happen?
When we go through trials, the Lord burns away the things in our lives that don’t matter. We begin to focus om the things that do matter and we get stronger. We get stronger because we do without some things are we trust God more and our faith is strengthened.
Today, if you are going through a trial, God wants to use it to make your faith stronger. There is an old saying, “Christians are like tea bags; not much good until they’ve been through some hot water.” Let the “hot water” of trials strengthen you today.