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here + now.
I love palm trees and college campuses (and working on a college campus surrounded by palm trees).☀️🌴❤️
There are a lot of unknowns in this life. And when the hypotheticals and the “what-ifs” start swirling through my brain (read: attacking with the vengeance of a thousand Trojan fighters), this truth is put on repeat: “We don’t have grace for that yet.” God gives grace, sufficient, beautiful, breathtaking grace, for right now. This moment. Today. We don’t have grace for hypotheticals, because God doesn’t live in the realm of what-ifs. But, because He changes not, He will give the grace necessary for us to survive all the days He leads us into. When the what-ifs become reality or when the curveballs come, the grace we need to follow Christ also comes. Yes, there are a lot of unknowns in this life. And all of them are fully known by the grace-giving, covenant-keeping God who fully knows us and provides everything we need for every circumstance He ordains for His highest glory and our deepest joy. Because of the cross, we can now rest and rejoice in the middle of unknowns. We don’t have grace for those yet, but we have Him, and He will hold us fast. ❤️
“My hope lives not because I am not a sinner, but because I am a sinner for whom Christ died; my trust is not that I am holy, but that being unholy, He is my righteousness. My faith rests not upon what I am, or shall be, or feel, or know, but in what Christ is, in what He has done, and in what He is now doing for me.” -Charles Spurgeon

Follow me as I follow Jesus

Monday Morning Munch No. 141 – Questions to identify guilt from good things

questions to identify guilt from good things.jpg

“In despising the gifts, we insult the giver.” -John Calvin

As I confessed last week, my low-grade guilt over enjoying good things is real. It’s a heart issue I didn’t realize was a thing until reading Joe Rigney’s The Things of Earth and as I finished the book yesterday, I can say it is undoubtedly one of the most helpful books I’ve ever read. I’ll be returning to it often.

Maybe you’re in the same boat? Maybe you’re also unsure of how to balance honoring God supremely with delighting in the pleasures at His right hand?

Ask yourself the following questions from Joe Rigney and dig deep for the reasons behind your answers.

  1. Do I feel a low-grade sense of guilt because I enjoy legitimate earthly pleasures?
  2. Is this guilt connected to any particular, concrete sinful attitude or action? Or is it rooted in a vague sense that I’m not enjoying God “enough” (whatever that means) or that I’m enjoying His gifts “too much”?
  3. Am I attempting to detach from creation and God’s gifts out of fear of idolatry, lest my love for them surpass my affections for Him?
  4. Am I overly suspicious of created things, looking at my delight in ice cream and sunny spring days and hugs from my spouse with a wary and skeptical eye, perpetually unsure whether they are too precious to me?
  5. Do I have the sense that as I progress in holiness, my enjoyment of fresh raspberries and hiking in the mountains and an evening of games and laughter with old friends ought to diminish because I am becoming increasingly satisfied with God alone?
  6. Do I regard certain activities such as prayer, worship, and Bible reading as inherently more holy and virtuous than other activities such as doing my job or listening to music or taking a nap?

“My point is not that you shouldn’t worry about the danger of idolatry. Far from it. Good gifts really can become distractions that keep us from communing with God. Idolatry isn’t a game; it’s a suicidal reality that wrecks our souls and awakens the wrath of a jealous God. My concern is that, in general, thinning out the gifts and rejecting the stuff, and suppressing our delight in created things, actually hinders our growth in grace and our ability to resist the pull of the Devil’s lies. There is a crucial place for renunciation and self-denial in the Christian life, but before we get to it (in chapter 9), we must recognize that our sin problem is far deeper than the glory of God’s gifts.

“Thankfully, the Gospel shows us a better way.” -Joe Rigney

More snippets from this most helpful book are coming soon. Stay tuned for more Gospel-rich soul food.

 

2 comments on “Monday Morning Munch No. 141 – Questions to identify guilt from good things

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