Forgiven and Free

Even though I know I’m forgiven, sometimes I don’t feel forgiven.  Satan loves to bring up the past and try to get us to wallow in shame, condemnation, and self-judgment. Old mindsets try to creep back in and we find ourselves vulnerable to temptations we thought we had overcome. Sin lurks at the door – as either a temptation or as a heavy shadow from the past.  But Jesus has conquered sin! Not only has He redeemed you from the shame of sin; He has freed you from the grip of sin. I… Read More

Turning Up the Radio Won’t Fix the Engine

Remembering my own sin keeps me from judging other people bound by sin.  Sin is a touchy subject because it is attached to the deepest parts of our lives.  I recently heard a minister point out that the middle letter of the English word “sin” is what best defines it – “I”. Sin is always about me, my wants, my selfishness, my way, me over anyone else, including God.  With sin comes guilt and shame – these things are built in. However, we often create workarounds. We find someone who will justify… Read More

The Power of One

Carrie and I had just gotten married and were both working at the Cracker Barrel. The summer before my senior year of college we were asked to go to another state and help salvage a struggling store.  It didn’t take long for Carrie and I to realize why this particular location was doing so poorly. One of the managers was unprofessional, apathetic, and the chief cause of the high turnover rate among the employees there.  Have you ever heard the term, “one apple can spoil the whole bunch?” I’m always amazed at… Read More

The Day Moses Broke All Ten Commandments

I’m not sure if we admit it as much as we used to, but we all sin pretty regularly.  For those who recognize the authority of Scripture, sin is defined by two words: transgression & iniquity. Transgression is the crossing of a line, the outward act of sin. Iniquity is the inner motivation, our fleshly bent toward sin. (The good news is that Jesus was both wounded for our transgressions and bruised for our iniquity!) Even if a person refuses to accept God’s word as the standard of right and wrong, there… Read More

No Longer Bound by Sin and Shame

Filled with shame, he regretted his decision to eat of the forbidden fruit. Then he heard the footsteps of God. Embarrassed and humiliated, she hung her head as her accusers publicly exposed her adulterous relationship. Then she heard the footsteps of Jesus. Our sins leave the residue of shame, humiliation, and regret. That’s what sin does – it lures us into momentary pleasure, but leaves us with a lifetime of pain. But it doesn’t have to be that way. In the Old Testament, God had Moses build a tabernacle, which served to… Read More