Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It's all Greek to Me

I am thankful the Lord does not treat us as we deserve.

He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. Psalm 103:10

I have always associated sin and iniquity as synonymous. According to Vine’s Concise Dictionary of the Bible:

The Greek word for sin when used as a noun is ‘awen – (iniquity, vanity, sorrow.) ‘Awen’ may be a general term for a crime or offense or falsehood.

The Greek word for iniquity when used as a noun is ‘awon’ – (iniquity, guilt, punishment.) The word signifies an offense, intentional or not against God’s law

A person could construe that our pride, arrogance, conceit and ego are sins we carry rather than carry out. We all have the capability to act upon our sinful nature.

Iniquity also means sin but encompasses actions beyond the sin. Iniquity is an act of intentional offense. In other words we know we’re sinning and we do it anyway. I don’t know about you but I have to ask God for forgiveness in this area more often than the other.

Now stay with me here as I learn to discern. Psalm 103: 10 is comforting and motivating to me. It reaffirms the love our God has for us.

Thank you for reading my novice efforts to be a teacher and a writer. Lord willing He will take over and make my words appealing and productive.

Until then, Lord willin’

Monday, July 13, 2009

Which Way Will You Choose?


No occasion justifies hatred;
No injustice warrants bitterness. I choose love.
Today I will love God and what God loves.


I will invite my God to be the god of circumstance.
I will refuse the temptation to be cynical…
the tool of the lazy thinker. I will refuse to see
people as anything less than human beings, created by God.
I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than
an opportunity to see God.


I will be forgiven. I will forgive so that I may live.


I will overlook the inconveniences of the world. Instead of
cursing the one who takes my place, I’ll invite him to do so.
Rather than complain that the wait is too long,
I will thank God for a moment to pray. Instead of clinching my fist
at new assignments, I will face them with joy and courage.


I will be kind to the poor, for they are alone.
Kind to the rich, for they are afraid. And kind to the unkind,
for such is how God has treated me.


I will go without a dollar before
I take a dishonest one. I will be overlooked before I will boast.
I will confess before I will accuse. I choose goodness.


Today I will keep my promises.
My debtors will not regret their trust. My associates will not
question my word. My wife will not question my love.
And my children will never fear that
their father will not come home.


Nothing is won by force. I choose to be gentle.
If I raise my voice may it be only in praise.
If I clench my fist, may it be only in prayer.
If I make a demand, may it be only of myself.


I am a spiritual being…
After this body is dead, my spirit will soar.
I refuse to let what will not, rule the eternal.
I choose self-control. I will be drunk only by joy.
I will be impassioned only by my faith.
I will be influenced only by God.
I will be taught only by Christ.
I choose self-control.

Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
Goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
To these I commit my day.
If I succeed, I will give thanks.
If I fail, I will seek His grace.
And then, when this day is done,
I will place my head on my pillow
And rest.

(Max Lucado, When God Whispers Your Name)

Until then, Lord willin'

Monday, July 6, 2009

Break the Cycle of Defeat

Do you feel powerless to stop the cycle of defeat in your life? Many of us do. This morning I had an AHA! minute.

For more years than I like to remember I have been cycling in and out of defeat. I have hated myself too many times and felt justified doing so. I hated my choices almost as soon as I made them but was powerless to stop.

I thought I was supposed to do my part. After all, I couldn't stand still and let God do all the work! I wanted to get in the middle and stir things up. Girlfriend, this is one time we need to put our busy bodies to rest.

Thank the Lord I am on the road to breaking free from this defeatist cycle. Do you know how? I choose to believe what God tells me. He said I am forgiven. He said He has a purpose for my life (Psalm 138:8) and He is also our servant. (Mark 10: 43-45)

There are three things we need to practice. Faith, Trust and Obedience toward God. Try these three things today only. Don't wonder or worry if you can do it again tomorrow.

Until then, Lord Willin' and the creek don't rise,