Isaiah 53:6

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

I’m very, very arrogant…  I don’t want to be told what to do.  I don’t want to admit I might be wrong.  Does that sound familiar?

Why does God refer to us as sheep?  Sheep are stupid!  They can’t think for themselves.  Without a shepherd, they will literally go astray, and probably die because they can’t fend for themselves.  Oh wait – does that sound familiar???

But I’m not like a sheep!  I know some people are – but not me!  Except that I completely screwed up my first marriage, as I selfishly sought my own pleasures, completely forsaking the needs of my ex-wife, and my children, and completely forsaking God.  But so what???  People divorce all the time.  And if I’m not happy in my marriage, isn’t it better to split up than live your life unhappy????

OK so I can’t be happy in that situation.  So I left that.  Now I’m happy, right?  Or – I will be when I get that new guitar.  And that amp.  And that sound system.  And I can sleep with that girl.  And if I can have that burger.  And that piece of cake.  Oh wait – now I’m fat.  I can lose that weight though, with this fancy diet.  And this gym membership.  Even if that membership costs money I don’t have, because I’m still paying for that guitar, and amp, and sound system.  Oh well – what’s a little more debt?  I’ve got the rest of my life to pay it off, and if I don’t pay it off before I die, you know what they say – “you can’t take it with you”.  That applies to my debt too, right?  I mean – you only live once, you gotta live it up, right?  What?  My kids?  I’m a good dad!  I mean, I feed them.  Kids don’t like their parents anyway, why should I invest in them, only for them to forsake me?  They’ll be fine.  I am.  They don’t need me, and probably won’t listen to me anyway.

Why am I so unsatisfied?  So empty?  So alone?????

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30).

It’s not just after death that we should be considering, when we think of salvation through Christ Jesus.  He promises eternal life – and that starts NOW.  And his yoke is easy, and his burden is light.

What you read above is somewhat of a description of the mess I made in my life. It’s not all-inclusive – I could go on and on about mistakes I’ve made.  Divorce.  Neglect of my wife and kids.  Drunkeness.  Selfishness.  Greed.  Materialsim.  Vanity.  Gluttony.  On and on…..

I don’t say all this to beat myself up.  So many feel that way, when I talk about my past.  They’ll tell me “Oh, we all make mistakes.  Don’t beat yourself up”.  But it’s not about beating myself up.  I’m done with that.

No – this is about what HE’s done for me!  He truly took on all my sins – those I’ve listed, those I didn’t list, those I’ve forgotten about – even those I’m yet to commit.  God provided a way for me, and for you, to once again be in perfect unity with him – a way that neither you nor I could find on our own – that way is his Son Jesus Christ.

And there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus!  Praise the Lord!

Yet even after accepting Christ in my heart, I can tend to wander.  I certainly don’t have patience to wait on him.  And I’ve put myself at risk of unnecessary pain in my life, and in other’s lives, because I was stubborn and arrogant.  I’m learning more and more that I do in fact need a shepherd…..

“I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me—  just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.”

And even in spite of my stubbornness, the Lord has been transforming me.  Saving me not only from eternal damnation in hell, but also from my sinful life right here.  Every one of those stupid things I listed above, he’s working in my life to correct.  I’m even well on my way to be completely out of debt, which means I’m not leaving it to you guys to pay back.  All glory and honor goes to him for this, as there is no way I could have done any of this on my own….

We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.

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