Dealing with Our Sin
Today's Reading: Numbers 29-31; Mark 9:1-29
For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do... For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find. For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. Romans 7:15, 18-19
I read an article about a family's fight against pornography. The husband (and father) had become addicted to pornographic websites, which led him into an assortment of related sinful activities. After repeated confrontations and family interventions, he chose to continue this path of destruction. The end result was a family torn apart amidst tremendous pain and confusion. One of the saddest facts of this story is that he was active in his church, served as a deacon, and had a great reputation in the community. Is this story an anomaly, a rare case that happens infrequently in the Christian church? Or is it more common but hidden? This article quoted statistics suggesting that almost half of all Christian homes are affected by pornography. Unfortunately, the Internet provides easy and secret access to these types of websites.
This story is tough to reconcile, especially when we think about how many families are impacted by this sin. It is also tough to realize that we, as Christians, are dealing with all types of sins. Pornography is only one example. Regardless of who we are, we struggle with sin and its consequences. Even the apostle Paul said that he knew that "nothing good" dwelt within him. He struggled with his flesh, just like we do. But unlike the man in the story, Paul dealt with his sins differently. He confessed them and he repented to God. Paul knew that his only hope was in Jesus. He knew that by the blood of Christ his sins past, present and future—had been washed away. Because he kept his struggles against his flesh before the Lord, he was able to walk in the light of Jesus. It is when we hide our sins, try to justify them, make excuses for them, or completely deny them that we are mastered by them.
Regardless of what you struggle with today in your flesh, please do not hide it from God. He already knows everything about you, even your deepest thoughts and desires. All He asks is that you come to Him and confess. Tell the Lord your thoughts and feelings, how you honestly feel, and then ask forgiveness. You may have to do this several times a day. But it is through this process of continually crying out to God, consistently bringing these hidden things to the Light, that healing comes. Do not give up. Jesus did not come for the righteous; He came for sinners. Jesus does not ask us to heal or fix ourselves. He does not ask us to do anything but come to Him. He will do the rest.