[ecko_quote source="1 Corinthians 3:10"]According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon[/ecko_quote]
An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. His contractor was sorry to see such a good employee go, and asked him if he would build just one last house as a personal favor. The carpenter agreed but his heart was not in it. He resorted to bad workmanship and using cheap materials.
When the carpenter finished his work, the contractor came over and handed the front-door key to the carpenter. "I appreciate all the hard work you've done for me all these years and I'd like you to have this house as a token of my gratitude."
The carpenter was shocked! If only he had known he was building his own house, he would have worked much harder! Now he owned a house that wasn't built very well.
We should think of ourselves as carpenters, and our lives here on earth, as our house. Each day we hammer a nail, place a board, or erect a wall, we must build with care! It is the only life we will ever build. And what we do here will count for eternity!
Friend, our lives today are the result of our attitudes and choices in the past. Our lives tomorrow will be the result of our attitudes and the choices we make today!
Let's proceed with caution.
Are you weary of the race? Remember: God is not looking for perfection but for persistence. As you keep your eyes on Jesus, you will get the courage and stamina to keep going until the finish line. And if you stumble, He'll be there to pick you up and get you back in the race again!
Source: Jonah Ravinder - UEC Ministries and George Whitten
[ecko_quote source="Roman 6:12"]Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires[/ecko_quote]
It has been a general tendency in Christian people (not all) that to commit sin and go to the Church and ask for forgiveness and come back only to recommit the same for which they sought forgiveness.
What is required for God to forgive sin? Repentance. But even repentance does not ensure the removal of the consequences of sin. The consequences often remain as a reminder of the terrible, destructive nature of sin.King David was forgiven for his grievous sins of lust, adultery, robbery and murder. God forgave him and removed his sin from him completely (Ps 103:12). God did not, however, remove the pain that David would endure as a result of his transgressions.
The child born of David’s adultery died (2 Sam 12:14), David’s son Ammon spoiled David’s daughter Tamar (2 Sam 13:14), David’s son Absalom murdered Ammon (2 Sam 13:28-29); Absalom brought the kingdom into rebellion (2 Sam .15).
For the rest of David’s reign, violence filled his home and his kingdom. Although David knew he was forgiven, he bore the painful consequences of his sin for the rest of his life.
It is presumptuous/ incorrect to assume that God removes every consequence the moment you repent of your sin. Do not think that the instant you show remorse God will restore everything as it was. He may not. Some sins, such as adultery, come from a flawed character. God forgives sin immediately upon repentance, but it takes longer to build character. It is a character, not forgiveness; that determines what God brings next to your life.
Because we know the devastating consequences of our disobedience, let us diligently avoid every sin and “run with endurance the race that set before us (Hebrews 12:1)
[ecko_quote source="Isaiah 55:8"]For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the LORD.[/ecko_quote]
The Bible is not primarily a book to be explained; it is first and foremost a book to be believed and obeyed. Whether you understand it or not, when God says it, you just simply obey it. Just consider when we take medicines, flying in aircraft and driving a car, did it require us to understand entire technology and formulas before we sit back and go forward. I think absolutely not, we just take the medicine as prescribed, board the plane and drive the car having full faith in those created matters. But we often times struggle to put our trust and believe in our Lord who created everything.
And don't substitute human reasoning for obedience. So many times we like to tell God how He ought to do things. I can imagine those early disciples when Saul was making havoc of the church and carrying Christians off to prison and death. I imagine there were much praying, “Oh, God, do something about Saul. Strike him dead.” But God didn't want to strike him dead. God struck him alive! And aren't you glad He did?
Isn't it strange how God works? You see, our ways and God's ways are so different. This is when we have to say, “I will trust You and obey.” Trust and obey; For there's no other way; To be happy in Jesus, But to trust and obey.