Devotional: Confession of a “bad” Christian
Confession of a “bad” Christian
Esther So (USA)
I sometimes think, I have been a Christian since childhood, so I don”t really sin much,right? Wrong! During a recent Bible study about the fruit of the Holy Spirit, I was struck, must be by the Holy Spirit, and realized that my daily life shows very little fruit of the Spirit but full of excuses that grieve the Spirit: Mind wandering off or wanting to finish fast while reading the Bible; watching TV rather than making phone calls caring for a sister or brother; jealous of that new or young co-worker who is learning faster and better; negative talk or gossip about co-workers or people; delaying writing offering checks; reading newspapers or magazines rather than spiritual books; mindlessly singing and making plan for the day during worship service; mentally arguing with the pastor during sermon etc, etc.
Although I have been a Christian for years so I thought to myself that I probably don’t sin much, but now I realize I am a “habitual” sinner, mostly in my actions and not just in my heart, that is awful! I am truly a sinner but saved by grace. Jesus warns us: “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” Mark 14:38. I now have a much better understanding when Paul said “So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God”s law” Romans 7:21-24. He also told us ” What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means! We are those who have died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?” Romans 6:1-2. Jesus taught us to pray: “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one” Matthew 6:13. Isn’t that so true that we face temptation daily and we didn”t even know we fall into its trap day after day? God is really patient and faithful, He said “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” I John 1: 9.
Since I realized my sins, I prayed that God will give me the desire to repent. With the help of the Holy Spirit I now try to: ignore the desire to do other things while reading the Bible, call someone once a week to care for them, circle the dates I need to write offering checks, read at least one or two spiritual articles, or a few pages of a spiritual book a week, and worship God in truth and spirit. The very thought that so many people around the world are living in regions of no religious freedom and they have to worship in secrecy, fearing that they might be persecuted, is a profound reminder that how blessed we are. How can we squander His grace and let the Spirit intercede for us with groans that words cannot express (Romans 8:26).
Thank God for the Holy Spirit who prays for us when we don”t know what and how to pray and convicts us when we sin, only if we surrender to Him. We need to ask the Holy Spirit daily to guide our hearts and thoughts and do what is pleasing to God and let God”s will be done in our lives as it is in heaven.
Because of the Lord”s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning； great is your faithfulness (Lamentations 3:22-23).
May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer (Psalm 19:14).