Sin is not Our Problem

It’s our answer!

I know, at first glance it sounds a little strange. I felt the same way when I heard it at church the other day, but oh, the wisdom in this seemingly “wrong” statement.

Think about it…sin is how we deal with our problems. We think getting angry at our children is the answer to helping them behave. We think spending hours on the internet will combat our loneliness. Or that buying those new pair of shoes or purse will fill that empty spot inside of us. Gluttony, greed, wrath, lust. They’re all ways people deal with other issues. They sin trying to solve the problems in their lives, but never will because sin is not God’s answer.

What a revelation I had listening to my pastor speak! How about you? Are you ready to see your sin as a means to control the uncontrollable in your life? Are you ready to let go of doing things your way?

God’s answer is simple, yet difficult. “Leave it all behind.” Just like the Israelites taking those first steps into Egypt, leaving captivity is a scary thing. There’s something comforting about bondage. It’s familiar, but to taste freedom the way God intended, you have to abandon the things you think you really need and walk through the desert.

And I have promised to bring you up out of your misery in Egypt into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites—a land flowing with milk and honey.’ Exodus 3:16-18

[GROAN] Walking through the desert is no fun, in fact, it hurts! That’s why in many areas, I’m still in Egypt. The merciless sun, the lack of water. Who needs it? We do, if we want to get free.

It is in the desert where we truly meet God. Where we need to lean on God to supply all our needs, and he does. We may get sick of the manna, but we’ll never go hungry in the desert and our clothes won’t wear out. It’s in the desert God speaks, and we need to decide whether we’re going to listen and trudge ahead to the promised land or go back to Egypt.

Okay, I know what you’re thinking, nice analogy, but how does it all work in my life. Glad you asked! For Christians, going to the desert first starts with repentance and giving up those things we run to instead of God. [Confession Time] For me it’s the internet. I often seek “others” before seeking Him. And being a jealous God, he doesn’t like that!

Second, you practice what my pastor calls “patterns of grace.” Engage in devotions, reading the bible, things that communicate grace to your life like worship music. It took me a long time to realize that one way I commune with God is through devotional writing. I’m not big on reading long passages of the bible, but when something hits me and I work it around in my own head, then pour it out on paper whether formally and informally, that’s when I feel the connection with God. It was the same way in college when I was learning to play the guitar. I only knew a couple of cords, but every time I composed a song or psalm to Jesus, I felt the Holy Spirit minister to me.

Some of these “patterns of grace” are obvious like regular church attendance, tithing and building relationships, but others are harder to grasp since they’re not highly regarded like journaling and disciplining other Christians. Don’t limit yourselves to the traditional ways of connecting with God, find new ways to connect. But be warned, when you start to walk in these disciplines you’ll start to experience God’s grace. And it’s there you’ll realize that sin is NOT God’s answer!

4 Responses to Sin is not Our Problem
  1. Genny
    May 20, 2009 | 9:30 am

    Loved this! Thanks for the suggestion about patterns of grace! I needed this reminder.

  2. Reagan
    May 20, 2009 | 8:53 pm

    That was beautifully written and truly reflected the heart of God. Thank you for using your gift to write to encourage others!

  3. Gina
    May 22, 2009 | 9:29 am

    I need this reminder daily, though I’ve taken my own advice and I’m trying not to boot up the computer before I plug into Jesus!

  4. Gina
    May 22, 2009 | 9:29 am

    Reagan, your welcome. I was just glad I could pass on the revelation!