Day 8 - Excuses

Let me introduce you to our dog, Bailey. She is a pure bred German Shepherd and we absolutely love her to death. Being the guard dog that she is, tonight Bailey freaked out at something in the backyard and barked for 20 minutes straight at the back fence. If I hadn't already heard some peculiar sounds, I probably wouldn't have thought much of it. But being home by myself and having had intruders in my backyard before, I was a little freaked out.

Thankfully it was nothing and our dear friends Lindsay and Landon came over and Landon walked the perimeter of the house to check it out. What a great community of people we do life with here in Katy, TX.

Bailey is a great guard dog. She is always aware of her surroundings and is on her feet in no time when she senses danger. Nothing escapes her notice. I could really take a lesson from her when it comes to keeping danger out. In my case, the dangerous thing is sin and it has the power to destroy my life. But instead of standing guard, I often let sin into my life without question.

When I look at the Word of God, the commands given in regards to sin are all very drastic. Flee, hate, make no provision, throw off, etc. Jesus commands us to cut off our hand and gouge out our eye if they lead us into sin. Although not a literal command, He made the point that we need to take severe measure to keep sin out of our life. Yet my response is not always this radical. I have often not only made allowances for my sin, but also made excuses for it to stay in my life.

I repent of not hating sin, but instead being ok with it.

Some of my excuses are based on the culture. I can convince myself that it's ok to be gluttonous because it's acceptable in our culture. Other times, I have used my emotions as a means to justify my sin. If I feel something strong enough, then I decide that I must have a right to be angry and ignore the commands of scripture to forgive. And don't even ask me about the kind of allowances I make for myself during "that time of the month." Regardless of the reason, the bottom line is I am justifying my sin. It may be true that my emotions are heightened and I have slightly less control over them than normal, but Scripture never makes an allowance for me to be disobedient just because of my hormones.

I repent of justifying my sin and using my emotions and hormones as an excuse for unrepentant sin in my life.

I need to stop making excuses and standing on my rights and start to view sin for what it is: a dangerous poison to my life, my marriage, my ministry, and my relationships. Taking a lesson from my dog, I need to stand on guard at the doorway of my heart, ready to bar the doorway as soon as I see sin approaching. I have left the door unlocked and the welcome mat out too long. No more allowances for sin, it's time to stand my guard and take drastic measures.

"A wise man is cautious and turns away from evil, but a fool is arrogant and careless." Proverbs 14:16