Thursday, February 07, 2013

February 7, 2013 … Lone Ranger Christianity – NOT!!

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 38

Passage of the Day: Proverbs 3: 5 [in the context verses 5-6] [NKJV] … Trust in the Lord with ALL your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In ALL your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths. 

Passage of the Day: Proverbs 3: 5 [in the context verses 5-6] [NLT] … Trust in the LORD with ALL your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will direct your paths. 

Passage of the Day: Proverbs 3: 5 [in the context verses 5-6] [MSG] … Trust GOD from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for GOD’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; He’s the one who will keep you on track. 

Contextual Study of today’s passage: Proverbs 3 [NLT] … Go to this link … 

Reference Passage #1: Jeremiah 17: 9 : [NLT] … {Why don’t we trust our own judgment – alone?} … The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is? 

Reference Passage #2: Ecclesiastes 4: 12 : [NKJV] … {Lone Ranger Christianity doesn’t cut it!} … Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken. 

My Journal for Today: Today’s working-place man’s devotional by Os Hillman rang a very personal bell with me today. He used the primary reference to one of the most quoted verses in all of the Old Testament, Proverbs 3: 5-6 as well as Jeremiah 17: 9 to point out to his readers that we’re in danger as Christians trying to rely on our own minds/hearts when it comes to decision-making.

I know this principle all too well because I lead a ministry to help Christian men who’ve been spiritually weakened by patterns of habitual sexual sin. They have learned just how vulnerable they are to Satan, the world, and their own flesh when they try to go it alone and traverse this hyper-sexualized world, trying to remain pure in their pursuit of Christlikeness. They have discovered that “Lone Ranger” Christianity just doesn’t cut it; and they need the counsel and accountability of others, especially other strong, biblically secure Christians, to help keep them stay on track in their walk toward freedom in Christ. They’ve learned the wisdom of Ecclesiastes 4: 12 … that a single cord can be ripped apart easily; but a threefold-cord is not easily broken.

Our human hearts are so wickedly deceitful [again, Jer. 17: 9l; and leaning on our own understanding, as is pointed out in Prov. 3: 6 is flat-out stupid! My wife often says, “You just can’t deal with dumb!” And when we try to traverse this life … this world which Satan has designed to trip us up … we’re just forging our way through the minefield of life, blindly going it alone and expecting that we won’t get our toes blown off. Some would call it “insanity;” my wife would call it …

DUMB! … Double-DUMB!! … no, … Triple-DUMB!!!

If we’re going to try to make it through that minefield we call life, wouldn’t it be advisable to find someone who’s already gone through the field, or even better to follow someone who’s a minefield expert and knows where all the mines are. That’s what Jesus was trying to get His followers to do in Luke 9: 23 when He said [NKJV], “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”

My friend, do you agree with what I’m saying here; … i.e., do we agree with the Bible that it’s not wise to go through life as a “Lone Ranger” Christian?

So, … are we trying to go it alone? If so, what is all of this saying to us? I think my wife’s logic is correct. It’s just D .. U .. M .. B to try to make decisions alone in this world!! And God’s Spirit is going to let us try to walk through the minefield of life … all by ourselves … if that’s our choice. But as my wife says, “You can’t deal with dumb!” And personally, I’ve learned the hard way; and I don’t plan to go back and do the minefield the dumb way anymore.

I’m really into surrounding myself with as many biblically wise people I can, especially when I need to traverse the minefields of life and make important decisions which can affect my own well being … and even more so when the lives of others are impacted by my choices. I’m going to do life held together by a many-stranded cord. How about you?

My Prayer for Today … Lord, help me be surrounded by others who follow You and know the way through the minefields of my life. … Amen

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