Part 3: Seminary, my lesbian Roommate and the Mercy of Conviction

Most people when they sin, they don’t mean to. In fact, I would dare say that many murderers, robbers and rapists have very logical reasoning for doing what they are doing.They have created judgments of people deserving what they get and have decided that they will be the ones bringing in the justice.

And the same goes for the LGBT community as well and their recent accomplishments. Their love is real and they are all doing this in the name of “love” but it’s love according to their standards not the Bible’s definition. But they all hurt just like we do and have deep wounds from all the divorce from the 80’s and 90’s, all absentee fathers, all the single moms or dads that had to be tougher than nails for their families. The boys and girls that were abused or never given a real example of godly love through their parents. Or just plain ol’ lust going in the all sorts of directions.

However all of this is fine according to their self-defined code of conducts and beliefs.

Just like all of our actions are.

We all, whether we care to admit it or not, have constructed our own code of ethics, no matter how closely engineered according to the Word of God we think they may be. It’s so easy to get lost in the confusion, business and loudness of this world. All the demands placed on us from every which way, that then we wind up missing it, missing Him. Straying so far from the words He spoke to us. We are all yet sinners and fall short every day of the glory of God, even with the best intentions of heart.

But we are still called to persevere, strive and hide His Word in our hearts.

How many of us have memorized the first five books of the Bible? Or even the words of Jesus for that matter? And that is exactly what Paul and all the others did who wrote the New Testament, including the Messiah Himself. He was the “Word” that became flesh in John 1:1. What other Word was He besides the Torah Himself?

In fact, He said that He “did not come to abolish the Law but to fulfill it.”

Matthew 5-17-20

 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.

 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

And that Law is so hard to follow. We will break it, inevitably, But we try, I repeat, we TRY because we love Him.

John 14:24 “Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.”

And what other “Word” did the Father send but the Torah? Even the Hebrew word, Torah does not simply mean law. It actually means, “instructions.” Yes, the Torah may seem daunting and lacking grace, but what other god has ever sent His only Son to die for humanity? What other god has the story of love that YHVH does, grieving for a world the way He does? Yet we are so selfish in our humanity. We consider all these stories in the Torah that talk about execution of the sinner as if the whole point of this life is to stay on this broken earth, as if the purpose of all of this is to have ever lasting life on this planet. Have we thought that if God will use our birth and existence for the changing and shaping our hearts and the hearts of others, that He would our death as well?

And He will use our death because if He didn’t even spare His own perfect Son, why would He spare us in this process? You’re right, our blood will not save anyone, but our death will impact someone on this earth that loves us and hopefully turn them deeper into the heart of God. (God always has a purpose for the trials we face, to draw us closer and closer to Him, as we can never be too close this side of eternity).

That was what the whole point of the sacrificial system was. It was to keep our hearts tender. Seeing a helpless animal die in our stead was supposed to keep us from wanting to sin. Back then, they weren’t desensitized to blood and suffering through movies and video games like we are today. Watching that stuff HURT. And it was supposed to. So that we would know that sin will always have a hurtful impact on someone else.

And that is what the Torah is–Our set of instructions to live by on this earth. How to handle our tithes, how to really love our neighbor, how to treat the poor and get rid of debt… it’s all there. The answers to the world’s looming problems today. But many of us are blind to all of the realities of the Torah. But God can open our eyes if want them opened. If we ask Him.

The day we find out when we have done it all wrong, thinking we were doing the right thing, truly believing all along, “I thought I was obeying,”  only to have our eyes opened to how much were really missed it, is a day that is full of mercy and grace. Just like the day when Adam and Eve were deceived in the Garden, they were clothed and cared for, yet cast out.

Adam and Eve didn’t die that day, however death did enter into their DNA, but they were able to experience the joys of becoming parents, live long, full lives on this earth! Over 900 years worth of living! How gracious is that?! Their bodies were strong enough to live that long! I can’t imagine the long periods of health they enjoyed without allergies and arthritis! That alone is such a blessing!

But of course, they experienced woes as well. But the point is that there was grace after their disobedience, but most importantly their repentance.

And that’s all He wants. Repentance.

And that is a hard day–the day we are called to repentance. It’s filled with our eyes being opened to the mistakes we made bringing on grief, remorse and anger for all the loss and suffering our ignorance and unwitting arrogance has brought us and our family and those around us. The fiscal losses, the blows it took to get our attention, the thick forest of confusion we now find ourselves once we realized where we made the wrong turn and lost the axe head.

Bu then again, that is such a good day. He cares enough to point out what were were doing wrong in the midst of our idiocricy and whole-hearted efforts and attempts of really obeying Him.

In the end, all these sins, murder, rape, theft, homosexuality, gluttony, coveting, not loving thy neighbor as thyself, not trusting Him; they are all the same in the eyes of God. In fact, God has more to say about us not trusting Him than about any other sin in the Bible. Yet that is the one He seems to have so much mercy upon, over and over. How many times in homosexuality mentioned versus not trusting Him? And how many of us truly trust Him when it comes to everything and everyone in our lives? I know I struggle with this daily.

But in the end, I rely on His mercy, pleading that He remember me in His compassion with all my faults and failures.

So, the beauty of the conviction is the that God cares enough about you, about me about everyone that when His words come, no matter how harsh they may seem, when they are spoken to the very depths of the situation we are crying out about, we thank GOD for them. Thank God He will pull out the red pen, hand our paper back with all the corrections on it, no matter how much it hurts our ego.

Yes, we put our all into that paper, research, time, emotions, talent. But if it weren’t for correction we could never move forward. Ever.

So, we lay our pride down, accept the the red ink with gratitude and absorb the areas of mistakes with the added corrections.We humble ourselves before our Great Teacher. For we KNOW He longs to teach us, if only we are humble and willing to listen.

And while all of this “pride” is going on around us, remember pride does come before the fall… just pray that we are not the ones found prideful, in anything.

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