Wednesday, June 8, 2016

2 + 2 = 4 In Math... & In Life.

“No one calls for justice; no one pleads a case with integrity. They rely on empty arguments, they utter lies; they conceive trouble and give birth to evil… Their feet rush into sin… They pursue evil schemes… there is no justice in their paths… 9 So justice is far from us, and righteousness does not reach us. We look for light, but all is darkness; for brightness, but we walk in deep shadows. 10 Like the blind we grope along the wall, feeling our way like people without eyes.” (Selected thoughts from Isaiah 59) 

Sometimes when I’m counseling a person who’s made a string of poor decisions, but now wants to turn things around—I will say, “Okay, just like 2 + 2 = 4, EVERY TIME and is NEVER 3 or 5, EVERY TIME you do __________ it’s ALWAYS going to = BAD FRUIT.” In our passage above, Isaiah is talking about the spiritual equivalent of my little 2 + 2 illustration. He’s saying to God’s People (my paraphrase) “Dude, you’ve thrown integrity, honesty and justice out the window, and now you don’t understand why your lives are filled with strife, come-on! Get real, you can’t spurn God’s ways and still expect His blessings.”

Here’s the BIG LIE the devil doesn’t want anyone to think about: Temptation always OVER PROMISES, UNDER-DELIVERS… And comes with BAGGAGE you didn’t count on! 

Think about it—the power of temptation is what it promises—fun, a good time, escape from problems, pleasure, money, etc. And while you might experience a brief moment or season of that if you follow that temptation—in the end, it always falls flat and leaves you empty and disappointed—AND it always produces unintended consequences.

I remember well my life B.C. (before Christ). I bit into every temptation offered—and yes, I experienced some “high” moments—but that lifestyle--over-all--bent the trajectory of my life in a bad direction.  Today--with Christ on the throne of my heart, the other-side of that principle applies. With Jesus. I experience plenty of difficult and discouraging moments—but today, by the power of the Spirit of Christ within me—I no longer seek to “escape” those issues. I face them with faith and press through.  Of course I struggle at times--and try to handle things on my own and get all stressed out and have toRELEARN the timeless truth that God--is my strength.  But God is so faithful, He even uses those times to teach and mold me more into the image of Christ! (Rom. 8:28-29)  And as a result—the overall trajectory of my life in Christ is victorious and positive.

I think Paul said it best: 
"...we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. 8 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9 persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed…. we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory…” (2 Cor. 4:7-9 & 3:18)

Here’s the bottom line: 2 +2 DOES = 4 EVERY TIME, in math and in life.

Godly choices today—better life tomorrow---nuff-said.

Thanks for reading!  Hope this encouraged you.  If it did--remember to share the link!

Until next time--blessings,