August 6, 2016

Refuge for refuse

I really thought that I was pretty good.

Let me say that differently to help make my point.

I never thought that I was that bad.

Before being made new, and I'm talking really being saved, I had not repented.

I had believed in Jesus.

So do demons.

But I had not agreed with God about my sin.

For that matter, I had not identified my sin.

I had not agreed with God that my hate was murder, for example.

That is what Jesus did with people we read about in Scripture, and that is what he still does.

He helped them identify what was going on in their souls.

We follow him, and in the process of following him, we come to ask questions of him.

He is called "Teacher" after all.

Do you ask questions of him?

Anyway, I got this horrible sense that my prayers were not being heard.

There was no rest in my soul because of that.

I'd pray, and worry, and fret, and those two do not jive when one speaks with God, and knows God.

So I asked of him.

"Why are my prayers not being heard?"

Of course, I was led to Scripture; that's where we find him, and all the answers.

And I found, "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me."

I knew that verse, and had quoted it often, and taught it to others, but I had not believed it.

Do you sin?

That is holding "regard" for sin.

If you sin, and pray, then do you still consider your prayers heard?

How is that possible when one considers that verse from Psalm 66:18?

Do you believe in your ability to pray, or do you believe in the Word?

There will be those who face Jesus at the end who will be told to depart form him.

They will say, "But we prayed in your name!"

Are you that type?

The type that think that just because they say the name of the Lord, then he hears them?

And because the prayer sounded good, and was said with tears, and a bit of effort, then he heard?

Find and read Matthew 7:21-23.

Who is Jesus speaking about in that passage?

Is it those who have had no regard for him?

Yes.

They had regard for sin.

One does not have both.

Either one is producing good fruit, and only good fruit, or one is not in the Vine (Matthew 7:17).

God is a refuge for the sin-sick, and if you have never recognized, and agreed with God about the sin-sick condition of your soul, then you have not met him.

He will not look on sin.

Once you agree with him, he washes you, and you are never the same again.

And you face him, and ask confidently of him, not because you can speak confidently.

But because you are clean.

After being washed, you do not ever again have "regard" for sin.

Why?

The power of the Spirit is in you, and God will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you can bear, and that is found in I Corinthians 10:13.

Or do you not believe it?

In a sin-sick soul, one does not see their sin as "refuse" or garbage, and .... well, sin.

I was refuse.

I met the Refuge when I agreed with him about the sin that I "regarded" and enjoyed.

Have you done that with the "refuse" that you do?

Until then, you will not know the One who will cover you, and hold you, and give you rest.

Do you think that you can give good gifts to your children?

Stand back a bit, and consider One who gives the gift of freedom, and not just for the future.

But now.

Agree with him.

Believe him.

Then you can (and will) do as he commands, for the Spirit, who you may sing about with gusto, will fill you and make you clean, and will sing through you forever, and ever, and the "regard" for sin will be gone from your soul, and you will know of freedom, and will speak of freedom, and you will know that you do not belong to the world, and it will hold no sway on you, for you will be free.

You will love the Lord your God with all your heart.

You will love your husband.

You will be patient.

You will be kind.

You will know God, and you will not fail to obey him.

He does that work THROUGH you.

It will not be of YOU in any way.

YOU will not boast of what YOU can do, but of what HE does in you.

You will stand amazed in his presence.

Once and for all time, and there will be no "rededication" of your soul over and over again.

That term is not found in Scripture.

You are dedicated (attached to the Vine), or you are not.

You love, or you do not love.

You do not have the prerogative to jump on and off the Vine.

Do you believe in Jesus?

Then you will DO as he says to do.

In John 14:23, we see what Jesus says about those who truly love him.

Do you believe what that verse says?

Do you really believe?

One cannot really believe until one repents.

Sin prohibits belief.

"Repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand, (Matthew 4:17).









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