Tuesday, March 17, 2009

"This fork is filthy!"

I really believe that if want God to use us - we've got to be useable. Are you more likely to use a clean fork or a dirty one? Are you more likely to wear a clean shirt or the one with stains all over it? Are you more likely to drink water from your kitchen sink or your septic tank? If we want God to use us - we must be clean, holy and useable.

One thing we've learned over these past few weeks as we've studied THE TEMPTATIONS, is that giving the devil a foothold almost always leads to his gaining a stanglehold. Slowly he wears down our defenses and soon we discover that sin "takes us farther than we wanted to go; keeps us longer than we wanted to stay; and costs more than we want to pay". A glance becomes a gawk - a look becomes a leer - and a sacred trust is broken. That's the story of David and Bathsheba...but it's our story too. It's the story of a slow fade.

So, I hope that you might consider those CODE WORDs I mentioned on Sunday morning: PERMISSION GRANTED. When I say "permission granted", I mean that more than anything else in my life, I want to like Jesus. If I'm going to be like Jesus...I've got to be Holy (not only "positionally" Holy but "personally" Holy). If I'm going to be personally Holy...I've got to stop sinning. If I'm going to stop sinning...I'm going to have to overcome temptation. And if I'm going to overcome temptation...I'm going to need help.

You and I need to grant permission to someone in our lives to probe, ask questions and examine us for the sake of our own Holiness. So...who is asking you?

Remember the stat we read from the DTS survey of 237 Christian men who had fallen morally and had only 1 other thing in common...they had no one holding them accountable for personal Holiness. So...who is holding you accountable?

Start with this...have you spent time alone with God in His word and in prayer today? What is God saying to you in your time with Him? Are you spending enough time with your family today? Are you being honest in your financial dealings today? Has a "glance" become a "gawk" today? Are you lying to me about any of this?

It's not easy. It's hard. Sin is like 2nd nature to us. Holiness seems strange and unfamiliar. But I'll be more Holy if somebody's watching and so will you. Is PERMISSION GRANTED?

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