Hey! Hey! Hey!
How have you been since you last read my blog? 🙂
It is my prayer that you are safe, healthy and adhering to the #COVID19 health precautions. I encourage us to keep praying for our front-line workers and the most vulnerable in society. Let us also do our best to assist in any and every way possible; be it donating to the needy, reaching out to the desperate and in sum, being the light that the world so desperately needs during this dark time.
“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16 (NIV)
There’s a lot being said about the Coronavirus pandemic, some say that the disease is a punishment from God for the evil that’s been happening on earth while others say that this is a sign that the rapture is nigh.
Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”
John 13:7 (NIV)
Regardless of what the reasons may be, what is of significance at this moment is to ask God what He would like us to do with and for Him during this period.
Many are groping in the dark as to why we are going through the coronavirus crisis but I watched a YouTube video by Heather Lindsey that helped shed light on the situation. You can watch it below:
Speaking of punishment of sin, today’s article is going to dissect this matter a little further. Let me make it clear that I am not referring to the context of the coronavirus pandemic in any manner or form. In the past couple of weeks, I am pretty sure you’ve read/watched/heard/spoken about coronavirus a whole lot and I am not about to add onto that information overload.
Gather round folks, we are about to have a very interesting “discussion” here:
I am writing about sin …. again!
“No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God.”
1 John 3:9 (NIV)
Clearly, this is not the first time that I am writing about sin. I’ve written about the consequences of sin and the need to repent and get back to the path of righteousness. Today, I would like to talk about GRACE… The Amazing Grace that we all love to sing about. Now, in case you’re wondering why I’m mentioning grace when I said that I would be talking about sin; here you go:
God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant.
Romans 5:20 (NLT)
So then, the law was introduced into God’s plan to bring the reality of human sinfulness out of hiding. And yet, wherever sin increased, there was more than enough of God’s grace to triumph all the more!
Romans 5:20 (TPT)
I have included The Passion Translation because I like how it expounds this matter. Whenever I write about God’s forgiveness, I always give the caveat that, Grace is not an excuse to (knowingly) sin.
Earlier this week, I was listening to worship music as I was doing some house chores when a song that was not in my YouTube playlist was auto-played. That song is called “Your Great Name” by Todd Galberth. It is more than a song actually, it is a worship experience. You feel the move of the Holy Spirit with each note that is belted out.
As Todd Galberth was winding down on the song, Pastor Ron Carpenter, went to the pulpit and made an altar call for those who felt that they had strayed from God. This is what the Spirit of the Lord led him to say:
“There is a story in the Bible about a son who left his father’s house. It’s a very simple story that has been preached many times.
There is something about when we wander and when we stray and every one of us has done it at some point. There are all types of distractions and all of a sudden, we were once on the right path and we find ourselves a million miles away and we don’t understand how we got so far away. When you’re doing things that should be making you sick (in your spirit) and it doesn’t bother you; you know that you are a long way from God………………
I’m speaking to a group of people this morning; that although you have your hands raised (in worship), in your heart, you feel a million miles away from God. There are some people here who feel the shame of what they’ve been doing or maybe you feel like a hypocrite for not living the life that you’ve fooled everybody into believing that you’re living. Now the enemy is in your head telling you that you’re not worthy to praise, you’re not worthy to worship, you’re not worthy to be in the house (of the Lord). While the enemy is telling you that you don’t belong, there is a Father who is watching you and has never stopped loving you. Your Father wants you back in His House more than you want to be in His House. Now, I want to break the lie of the enemy that tells you that you’ve made so many mistakes that you have to come to God and act like an outsider. There are no outsiders! Everyone in this room has made mistakes, has messed up. The Bible says that everyone is like sheep that have gone astray. Everybody… Everybody! You are not alone in that category. Everybody’s done it, it’s just that not everybody is willing to admit it. It’s not whether or not the Father is looking for you; it’s whether or not you will arise. Will you pull yourself up from your mess, move away from it and go back to God?
I have not captured Ron Carpenter’s message word for word because I didn’t want this article to be extremely long; so I encourage you to listen to that message directly. I’ll embed the YouTube at the end of this paragraph. If you’d like to listen to the message only, Pastor Ron starts speaking at 23:45. If you’d like to listen to the worship as well, listening to the whole video would be ideal. Click on the link below.
If you feel like you’ve fallen short of the glory of God, I would like to tell you that there is no such thing as “irreconcilable differences” with God.
“Let us, then, hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we have a great High Priest who has gone into the very presence of God—Jesus, the Son of God. Our High Priest is not one who cannot feel sympathy for our weaknesses. On the contrary, we have a High Priest who was tempted in every way that we are, but did not sin. Let us have confidence, then, and approach God’s throne, where there is grace. There we will receive mercy and find grace to help us just when we need it.”
Hebrews 4:14-16 (GNT)
Dust yourself up and accept God’s love. Love does not keep a record of wrongdoing so know that once you repent, God is not going to bring up your past.
“I will forgive their sins and will no longer remember their wrongs.”
Hebrews 8:12 (GNT)
“For I am certain that nothing can separate us from his love: neither death nor life, neither angels nor other heavenly rulers or powers, neither the present nor the future, neither the world above nor the world below—there is nothing in all creation that will ever be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours through Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Romans 8:38-39 (GNT)
You’re not a bad person, okay? You are a child of God and your Father in Heaven loves you more than you can ever fathom. He’s only waiting for you to repent. Ponder on the verse below:
‘Father,’ the son said, ‘I have sinned against God and against you. I am no longer fit to be called your son.’ 22 But the father called to his servants. ‘Hurry!’ he said. ‘Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and shoes on his feet. 23 Then go and get the prize calf and kill it, and let us celebrate with a feast! 24 For this son of mine was dead, but now he is alive; he was lost, but now he has been found.’ And so the feasting began.”
Luke 15:21-24 (GNT)
You. are. loved.