The following notes are in relation to “A Poem Called Grace” and discuss the spoken word with scripture references (all NIV translation) and their practical teachings. Overcoming sin is ultimately impossible. Being Christian is not hard; it is impossible by our own means. We become Christians and live life fully because of God’s work in our hearts; not our own. But, “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” John 14:6. It is only by knowing Him and developing a relationship with Him that we can truly overcome things in our heart. That’s the Grace of God! The grace of God sets us free from sin.
Lesson: “And you know warning comes before destruction.”
What warning? The hesitation in our heart? The stirring of our conscience? The unease in our stomach? Our intuition that knows the truth but we deny it? Or God’s gentle “No”?
Don’t we realize that a warning is not a threat? A warning gives us a chance to respond with our character. A warning is a test to know what our hearts truly follow. If God warns us, He warns us of a path that can lead to destruction. When we’re walking with God, hearing His voice and following it helps us act out of our spirit and within our relationship to God instead of our own fleshly and worldly desires. Our heart’s desires are not inherently sinful when they come from God. But other desires and the means for gratifying them certainly can be!
Also, if our own hearts, conscience, intuition, or body warn us, we should recognize that our own compulsions are risking our souls unto elements of darkness. We are acting out of our own strength and not filled with the spirit and our own decisions are leading us astray. We need to have a loving relationship with our self and treat our own internal convictions as our truth. Let us not deny or reject it, but accept our feelings as they are and that they are present. Rejecting or suppressing our own feelings only leads to pain.
If we need to grieve our losses as we follow conviction, let us do so! We should not hold onto our human pain in our hearts. God can and should convict us when our hearts are going where God doesn’t want us to, even if it isn’t into sin. We must learn to give up what God wants us to give up, out of love, belief, and loving obedience. Let us not keep our hearts for ourselves, but for God alone!
Truth Of Our Desires
Let me explain where our desires can go wrong. Do you know what if feels like to want? Do you know the temptation of your eyes and heart? What do you secretly wonder about and desire in your mind that is not revealed on the outside? That is temptation – a warning about a spiritual issue in your heart. You are thinking about what it would be like to gratify that desire and to make what you covet yours. That is selfishness.
It is in this desire that leads to destruction. The more you focus and dwell on it in your mind, or the more you indulge in the desire, the faster your heart gets to caving in to temptation and making an empty choice. A choice made out of desire will not fully gratify because your heart receives best with a surrendered and thankful posture, not a lustful one. Eventually, these empty choices will leave us wanting more and more until we become slaves to fulfillment and pleasure and die spiritually out of selfishness.
The Truth In Scripture
But each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. James 1:14-15
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” James 4:1-3
Thoughts of the self in lust and coveting are death to the spiritual being as our souls align with the flesh and sin, not righteousness and purity of heart! Such wanting comes before destruction. Wanting also destroys the happiness in our relationships. Our desires lessen others in relation to ourselves as we put our self first, above them and the gift of their presence and actions. Will you destroy the love in your life by your choice to desire?
Sins of desire are not the answer! There is another end rather than self gratification! The way to break sin, again and again, is to rest in God, the Alpha, who sent His son Jesus to free our hearts from the curse of death and to share in life with Him. God is the beginning and end of all things! Seek Him as the reward. Seek God in all your desires and you will walk with Him and be saved within rest and peace. Learn to trust God and place your anxieties in Him. Instead of desiring and coveting, a person is to be gracious and celebratory of what God has made in His own time. Instead of taking lustfully or manipulatively (in the mind or heart), we must submit to receive blessings in pure joy in the time God allows. Only then can temptation and insecurity be overcome fully in our hearts, without impurities of remorse or regret.