In the Prison Walls.

I want to be angry. I want to fully wallow in self-pity and ignorance. I wish, at times like these, that I didn’t know better. It’d be alot easier in that regard. But in the larger picture that is eternity and my love for God, I am thankful I have gone through what I have over the last eight weeks, even if that means my own self has to be put aside for God’s glory.

It’s hard, the Christian walk…[Walk? Most of the time it seems like I’m running a marathon with asthma and cataracts, or doing some sort of uphill hike in the mud on a foggy morning] It’s hard not to stay angry, to not forgive, to not love another one of God’s people.  It’s hard to not envy what someone else has, even when it’s a spiritual gift God has given them. It’s so difficult to not be jealous of a friendship you want so deeply with another person and you see others have it with them.

But the moment these sinful thoughts pop up, I must forego all else and cling to my Savior, lean upon the Holy Spirit within me for strength, and ask God to see me through, while thanking Him for revealing it to me in my own life. Each and every time this happens I nail my sin to the Cross.  I put one more mark on my Savior’s body, telling Him that my pettiness means more than Him to me.  How can I do that? How can I put all of this junk of my life on the back of my loving Lord and be okay with that?

I’m not.  I’m not okay in the least with where I’ve allowed my sin to take me-which has been away from God. I’m not okay with the mere thought of my selfish acts putting my Savior on the Cross. I know that I must go before my God to ask for forgiveness-to confess that I knowingly, and disobediently, chose that over Him, and I must humbly repent from it. I cannot sit in my sin, indulging in it, feeding it, in the hopes it’ll become dissatisfied with the comfort I’ve given it. No, like an indulged child, it will grow more demanding and insistent upon my time…my devotion….and my attention.  It will bring me to a point where I give it it’s every whim that even my own attempts at disciplining it could not bring it to submission.  (And it never can…I can never handle my sin…Christ did that on the Cross)

God has freed me from sin, and the bonds it so tightly binds around me. Why do I choose knowingly to go back to that life? The prison documentaries that I watch with so much joy say that the vast majority of inmates who are released will return to prison not long afterward. We sit outside the walls wondering why that is.  Why they would blatantly act in such a way to go back to a life in captivity essentially.  Yet, as Christians we do the exact same thing…I do that exact thing.  I see the sin, I recognize that once I step into it, I am acknowledging that I am attaching it to my life in a way that puts walls around my relationship with God and pulls me from Him.  It locks me up alone to contemplate the many excuses as to why I “fell into” it. The hole that I dig myself to fall into takes time…it takes effort…it takes a conscious decision of picking up that shovel.  It takes an act on my part to disobey God.  Sin never catches us by surprise.

James 4:7Therefore, submit to God. But resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
James 1:20for man’s anger does not accomplish God’s righteousness.

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