When we disobey what we know to be God’s will, we are saying by our actions, “Not Thy will, but mine be done.” Sin is always a refusal to acknowledge God, a declaration of our independence and a stiff-necked resistance to God’s sovereignty.
Unlike the atheist who believes there is no God, we may believe we don’t really have to deal with the God who does exist. We may think that He can be ignored. But our disregard for God only shows us to be foolish. It does nothing to diminish Him.
Eloquent words about God may abound in some circles, and there is certainly no shortage today of profound discussion about spirituality. But our relationship with God is not determined by either the eloquence or the profundity of our talk.
In this age, we’ve discovered how to multiply our own words vastly, and we’re frequently reminded of the power of these words. But we dare not forget their danger. “The Lord is in His holy temple. Let all the earth keep silence before Him.”
Can we recognize that which is morally excellent when we come in contact with it? Our judgment must come to coincide more closely with God’s, so the things we approve are the same things He approves. Spiritually speaking, our tastes must be refined.
There is nothing wiser we can do than observe God’s law carefully. If when others think of the lives we have lived, they think of the good things that come from seeking God’s wisdom, then it’s fairly certain that we’ve been “after” the right thing.
Those with godly sorrow are the God-centered people who, once they realize they’ve erred, will grieve the wrongfulness of their sin rather than its painfulness. The self-pitying sorrow of the world leads to death, but godly sorrow leads to God.
Reverent fear is not inconsistent with love. As one dictionary puts it, reverence is “a feeling of profound awe and respect and often love.” It is the blending of love and godly fear that transforms our seeking of God into a DILIGENT seeking of God.
If we truly had a heart that was both reverent and grateful, what a difference it would make! Our faithfulness to God be more steady, and we would have given to God the most important thing that He seeks from us: a heart willing to be redeemed.
The strength we desire doesn’t come by focusing on our own needs, however spiritual those needs may be. These things are by-products of focusing on God. If we’re obsessed with ourselves, it’s not likely that we’ll find what we’re looking for.