Whooa!

I was sleeping peacefully—and deeply—up in the loft of our 350 square-foot cottage. This particular night, I slept closest to the stairs and my husband slept near the wall. It must have been sometime between midnight and 4am, but in my blissfully unconscious state, I was unaware of the time.

Suddenly a BING-CRASH-SHATTER sounded from the kitchen! Someone broke through the window into our home I concluded as my eyes popped open in a panic. I saw my husband literally mid-air, jumping over me, and then watched as he landed on his feet in a crouching position with his hands out in front of him…ready to fight. Uhh…Whooa! I thought as I watched him prepare for action. Who-is-this-man-that-I-married? Bourne? Bond? It’s funny how sometimes we think we know someone so well, and then we see this completely different side of them that completely amazes us (not that I didn’t always think my husband was amazing…).

Though I am certain no thief would have survived, I am grateful that it turned out to be the knives on our kitchen shelf falling to the ground and shattering a ceramic bowl along the way (blame it on the train).

Sometimes I think I know God, like I got Him all figured out. But to think that our finite minds can comprehend such an infinite God is nothing other than naïve. This week,  I feel as though I’ve had a Whooa! Who-is-this-God-that-I-serve?! experience. As I read His Word, specifically Exodus 3-15 and Job 38-41, I am literally wowed by a God that I have yet to learn so much about.

I’m praying that we each have a Whooa! Who-is-this-God-that-I-serve?! moment this week…that we realize He is greater than we originally thought, He is mightier than our strongest moments, and He is so holy we cannot even stand in His presence apart from His grace. He is the Lord of Hosts, and He deserves our reverence.

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My Rationalization of Sin

Deny God’s Word? No way! I would never…it’s just that sometimes my pain, or my anger, or my “justifiable” situation seems to rationalize…well, my sin. Oh, you know, that all-too-common phrase “I know, I know all that, BUT…{rationalization here}…” The truth is that sometimes our situation is so difficult, our pain so great, our hurt so deep, that it seemingly gives us reason to justify our actions.

This rationalization is a timeless phrase; the Israelites used it too. They were in slavery under the hand of Pharaoh, and Moses’ encounter with Pharaoh only caused greater hostility toward them. As Moses sought God, God gave him a message for the Hebrews: “I will rescue you from bondage.” It was a message of freedom. “I will redeem you with an outstretched arm.” It was a promise of redemption. “I will take you as My people, and I will be your God.” It was a declaration of love.

The Israelites’ response? We read it in Exodus 6:9, “So Moses spoke thus to the children of Israel, BUT they did not heed Moses because of anguish of spirit and cruel bondage.” Don’t you see it? They used their pain and desperate situation as a reason to deny the one thing that could redeem them from it. Yes, their pain was real. But so was God’s promise.

Are you struggling to forgive that person who greatly wronged you? Are you anguished in spirit? Are you consumed by a circumstance that is so difficult, it seemingly gives you reason to deny the Truth? Friends, the Truth will set you free. It too is timeless: it is a message of freedom; it is a promise of redemption; it is a declaration of love. And it is written to you.

May we not rationalize our sin by our situations or emotions, and in so doing, deny the Spirit of Truth. Instead, let us deny all earthly reason to justify ourselves and hold fast to the hope and promise that God’s Word has the power to save, redeem, and transform. Heed His voice, for though our situations are real, so are His promises.