I’ve been one of those people who like to play tricks on others. I have been known to set someone else up to make them look silly or goofy in front of others. I’ve had a laugh at the expense of others. Sometimes, they’ve played along with it and laughed it off. Other times, they’ve been pretty frustrated with me. If I get a laugh at someone else’s expense, I’ve harmed them. Even if it wasn’t my intention to hurt them – my behavior can still hurt.
Paul addresses the problem of sin inside of all of us. Even those who call themselves Christians still struggle with sin. I love the honesty and transparency of this passage, because I’ve been there often. Check this out….14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. (Romans 7:14-20 NIV)
The truth is that I don’t always make good choices in regard to my speech or my behavior. I have good intentions of being good and doing good, but still make dumb decisions that are indeed sinful. I get frustrated and exasperated trying to live right and do well and yet I still get tripped up. It seems hopeless to live my life without sin. Oh but Jesus did come and Jesus did die for people just like me. He took my sin and idiot behavior to the cross and nailed it there. He ushered in Grace and Mercy that I can’t earn and certainly don’t deserve. He made a way for my behavior to be altered. When I make a bad choice I’m convicted not because I broke the law, but because I broke His heart. That hurts deeply. I don’t want to trip and stumble because I hurt Him.24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25 NIV)
I’m so grateful for Jesus who brought salvation for people like me who try to be good and do good things, but still fail miserably. I’m so grateful for His Grace that picks me up when I’m tripped up.Pressing On! Dwayne