Sunday, March 14, 2010

Romans 7

Thoughts from my reading in Whiter Than Snow: Meditations on Sin and Mercy by Paul David Tripp. Devotional is indented.

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! Psalm 51:2

I am a mass of contradictions; I don't want to be but I am.
I preach a gospel of peace, but my life isn't always driven by peace.
I talk about a Jesus who alone can fully satisfy the soul, but I am often not satisfied.
I celebrate a theology of amazing grace, but I often react in ungrace.
And if I rest in God's control, why do I seek it for myself?
Even in moments when I think I am prepared, I end up doing what I didn't want to do.
Irritation
Impatience
Envy
Discontent
Wrong talk
Anger
Self-focus
Are not the fruit of the new life, are not the way of grace.
Romans 7 is my problem. I am not what I want to be. I don't do what I want to do and I do the things I don't want to do. Where is victory? I try harder but it doesn't last. I really want to change but I find myself in the same place over and over.

That battle inside me cannot be solved by
Theology
Strategies
Principles
Techniques
Plans
Preparation
Helpful hints
Outlines.
I have been humbled by the war I cannot win.
I have been grieved by desires I cannot conquer.
I have been confronted by actions I cannot excuse.
And I have come to confess that what I really need is rescue.
And there is the message I need. I need to be saved from myself. I need redemption and regeneration. I need the further message of Romans 7 and into 8 that through Jesus Christ I can be set free. I accept that my own ways have failed; I await rescue.

Here is a question from the meditation:

Is there a place right now where how you live is not consistent with what you say you believe? Isn't it wonderful that you do not have to panic, hide, or be depressed? Stop and confess your inconsistency to the One who was consistent so that you could be accepted and forgiven even in your moments of greatest inconsistency.
Isn't that great! He knows what I am and who I am; He knows all my secrets; It's nothing new to Him. He waits for me to come to the end of myself - not once and forever but today. I confess again; I confess what I realize today and I am rescued - again. And bit by bit I change.

Philip
.

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