Friday, 28 April 2017

Who Is Responsible?

Proverbs 7:1 My son, keep my words and store up my commands within you.

      I have been teaching a class on the responsibility we have as individuals for our spiritual growth as well as our emotional, mental, and physical well being. We do represent the kingdom of God and we have the Spirit of the Lord within us. Rom. 8:11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you. 
      Why do we have such a hard time living victoriously since the word of God says the resurrection power of God lives in us? It seems we live in a blame-shifting society and it has become the responsibility of others for our outcome in life. The Twinkie defence has become mainstream and is now leaking into church life. Statements like "It is the pastor's fault I am stagnating in my Christian growth. The loud music makes it too hard to praise and worship." have become frequent excuses and so on it goes.
      Taking responsibility for our actions is the only way we are going to grow from glory to glory. If we do not take ownership of our actions, then we will always be at the same place repeating the same old thing that got us the negative result in the first place. We will look for someone or something to blame because the spiritual results in our lives will be hit and miss with missing most of the time. 
      We see this blame game happening when God asks Adam if he had eaten from the tree of good and evil. Gen. 3:11b Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou should not eat? Adam blames God personally and also blames the woman for his own choice of eating the forbidden fruit. Gen 3:12 The man replied, “It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it. The woman blames the beguiling serpent. Gen. 3:13 And the LORD God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat. 
      I'm not saying I would have done any different in Adam's place. What we see is that sin causes us to shift the blame and responsibility of our sin onto others. It seems to be our default nature. However, if we are in Christ we are no longer of that old spirit and we can now come clean because the blood of Jesus washes us from shame and blame.
      The Lord invites us to come to Him as quickly as possible when we have made a wrong choice in life. When we sin, God, says to come to Him and confess it the moment we realize we have missed the mark. Heb. 4:16 Therefore we should come with boldness to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and may find grace for help in time of need. We are invited to fess up and take responsibility for what we have done. If we do God is faithful to forgive us right then and there.1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
      The only way to grow is to admit errors and learn from them. The only way to learn from the mess-ups in life is to take ownership of what we have done, what we are doing, and what we will do in all areas of life. Then we can move forward as mature people of God and become proficient in keeping the words of the Lord stored up within our souls.
      Prov. 7:1 My son, keep my words and store up my commands within you. Who is responsible for my life choices? I am responsible. God has given me a free will to choose Him over the insipid fluff the world offers twenty-four-seven. Since we are responsible for what we do in life, let us come boldly to the throne of God and admit our need for His mercy and grace to help us grow in Christ. Blessings.

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