I recognize how very differently I view all manner of things when considering them from God’s point of view, from a Biblical Worldview. So many things are rationalized away when we aren’t rooted in truth, unwavering truth, the only genuine truth. Last night I listened to a sermon on truth and found “Amen” resonating all the way to my soul. No wonder our world is unraveling all around us from worldwide economic collapse to violence and murder, animal-like pack behaviors demonstrated by hundreds of blood-thirsty men “protesting” in streets across the middle-east. It can all be traced to a rampant perversion of truth. As I stated to my students just last week, if we denounce the truth of God as absolute authority who established absolute truth, who declared right and wrong, then we find ourselves with nothing on which to stand to make judgements. We fall away into an abyss of confusion and chaos. Does that sound familiar? Bring any recent images to mind? It certainly does for me.
One problem is, that even for those of us who can see this in far away places, in government politics and large corporations, we often fail to see it in our own lives. Where are we making that slight turn away from the truth, making excuses and exceptions to what deep down we know is wrong. How are we justifying in our own minds dishonest behaviors, deceit, and wrongdoing in order to make, so we think, this day or these weeks and months easier?
It starts within our own minds, in our own hearts and homes, before it spreads extending past all boundaries of limitations to the gross state of deceit we find in the world. It comes back to us, to individual hearts and minds every single time. What are we teaching our children when we demonstrate dishonest behaviors? When we make exceptions for the purpose of ease, for any purpose at all, what are we teaching? Where does it end?
I think of the scripture where the psalmist wrote, “keep your servant from presumptuous sins.” The psalmist recognized our propensity toward deceiving ourselves, for allowing ourselves to take the easier road in the meantime without counting the cost to come. When we pray, might we be heard if only we lay bear the truth of our own failures before the Lord with genuine willingness to acknowledge our sin and repent (turn away from; cease from doing).
Getting to repentance is painful. It requires of us to look directly in the mirror and find an accurate reflection of all of our flaws and then demands that we lay down the false ways, come clean, live in opposition to what we have lived. It requires confession. It requires change. It brings humility as we recognize and acknowledge our pathetic state, our own willing cooperation with deceit that ever brought us to the place of need for cleansing, renewal, forgiveness, and dramatic change of direction.
I cannot teach what I am unwilling to live. Praying for those I love to live righteously when I am unwilling to do so myself is a futile prayer. God hears those who are broken and contrite before Him. He closes His ears to inauthentic prayers. This Christian life is one of struggle, though Jesus’ yoke is easy and His burden is light, the perverted world that surrounds us hates the righteousness of God and we daily face an opposition that without the Spirit of the Lord giving us power and strength to engage, we would surely be consumed.
Daily I ask for forgiveness, seeing clearly the sin that doth so easily beset, and I present myself humbly before the Lord, believing His promises, that though my righteousness is as filthy rags before Him, He wills to clothe me in the perfect righteousness of His Dear Son if only I will live surrendered to Him. It is a daily, continual, thoughtful, and disciplined approach to the throne of grace. By His grace alone are we saved. By His power alone are we kept forever in safety and unwavering love. May we seek Him with genuine adoration for His enduring goodness and truth.