Friday, May 29, 2020


So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7 

Nothing takes the air out of my sin wheels like humbling myself to God. If I remind myself that I want to be obedient to His Word and His way, and not pursue my own pride and selfish ambition, my idea to sin has little wind left in my sails.

I remembered a pastor say that sinful behavior is usually premeditated, and that’s true. Sin doesn’t always catch us off guard, it usually plans ahead. It doesn’t just show up unannounced, it’s got a plan, even if it’s a momentary dream in the back of our head.
Rarely does it come dressed as it really is, full of decay and destruction —no, it’s usually camouflaged as something that is exciting and beautiful. It satisfies momentary pleasure and then consumes us by destroying everything we have held dear. It takes wedding vows made to God and turns them into mere words of repetition, eliminating them to one sided excuses to commit matrimonial suicide. No longer a balanced statement of hope and teamwork, it becomes a pledge to  selfishness. We pick and choose the verbs we use to justify breaking vows and create selfish manifestos.

But sin is not limited to destroying marriages, it gives in to addictions and other gods, creates idols out of hobbies and work, reduces the names of God to cuss words, consumes our time, destroys families, takes away life, steals belongings, slanders neighbors, and puts our wants before others’ needs. Mostly, it removes the ability for us to love each other the way Jesus set the example of us to love, by serving each other. Sin exalts our own wants over other people’s (and God’s!) needs. When we ignore the effects of our sin on others, and put momentary pleasure ahead of other people’s pain, we choose selfishness over serving. To serve another is to lower ourself, to put their needs over our wants. To humble ourselves before God, resist the devil and his temptations, and make him flee is the ultimate superpower. You have this power in you! I have it in me too.


This post originally appeared on Marina’s Kitchen Table on May 28, 2018.

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