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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Falling Short of God's Glory One Step at a Time

We were created to give God glory. That is why sin is defined by our falling short of that glory. Sin is not doing what we were created to do. It is missing the mark in fulfilling our reason for creation.

In the Garden of Eden we see Adam and Eve committing what seems relatively benign by eating fruit they were supposed to avoid. But that assessment of harmlessness is exactly what got them in trouble. It is exactly what gets us in trouble too.

Few, if any, people get up one day and say, "I know that I have lived a life which has pleased the Lord to this point but today I am going out to commit the most egregious sins I can think of." No, we would recoil from great sin if we had lived chaste lives. Our journey is more like a frog boiled slowly in a kettle than one jumping directly into boiling water.

This is why we must guard the little things because it is these which most people would think are benign which lead us on a journey away from our God and create lives which do not give Him glory.

The little steps are skipping a time with God each day in which we "hear" His word, pray and give Him glory for the day. The little steps are missing church when it is possible to attend. The little steps are forgetting to honor Him as God and thank Him in all things. The little things aren't noticed by the people around us. They notice the things that happen after the little things are ignored.

I have been around a few ministers who were caught in affairs. I spoke with one recently who admitted it was a stupid thing to do. It came out of a counseling situation. It happened little by little as he did things that seemed benign. It ended the ministry he was in. No one noticed the little things. They noticed what happened because of the little things.

God often warns us against fear. However, there is a fear that He applauds. It is godly fear. This fear isn't one of terror because God may tear us apart for our sinfulness. It is the fear of disappointing Him. This fear is so strong that it guards against the little steps that take us away from Him.

If you are a Christian and you have committed one of the sins with hard consequences, I can assure you that you didn't simply decide to do something evil when it happened. You took little steps away from God and toward this sin.

If you are a Christian and you know that you are taking these little steps away from Him now, you need to go back to the little steps that will bring you closer to Him.

If you neglect a step that will bring you closer to God, you are taking a step farther away from Him.

Honestly, which way are you going today?

Song of Songs 2:15 (NIV)
Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.

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