"Behold, I am vile."—Job 40:4.
One cheering word, poor lost sinner, for thee! You think you must not come to God because YOU are vile. Now, there is not a saint living on earth but has been made to feel that he is vile. If Job, and Isaiah, and Paul were all obliged to say "I am vile," oh, poor sinner, wilt thou be ashamed to join in the same confession? If divine grace does not eradicate all sin from the believer, how dost thou hope to do it thyself? and if God loves His people while they are yet vile, dost thou think thy vileness will prevent His loving thee? Believe on Jesus, thou outcast ... Jesus calls thee, and such as thou art.
"Not the righteous, not the righteous;Sinners, Jesus came to call."Even now say, "Thou hast died for sinners; I am a sinner, Lord Jesus, sprinkle Thy blood on me"; if thou wilt confess thy sin thou shalt find pardon. If, now, with all thy heart, thou wilt say, "I am vile, wash me," thou shalt be washed now. If the Holy Spirit shall enable thee from thy heart to cry "Just as I am, without one plea But that Thy blood was shed for me, And that thou bidd'st me come to Thee, O Lamb of God, I come!"thou shalt rise from reading this morning's portion with all thy sins pardoned; and though thou didst wake this morning with every sin that man hath ever committed on thy head, thou shalt rest to-night accepted in the Beloved; -- Spurgeon
It is always amazing to me when the Lord "finds" me and speaks to my heart...speaks specifically to things lurking in there that I hadn't even expressed to Him or friends or even to myself. This morning was one of those times. Over the last couple of months, I've been battling disappointment and discontentment...and I've been carrying the guilt of it on my own. The mere emotional state, I knew, was sin...but so were the thoughts my feelings led me to think, the actions they led me to take, and worst of all, the distance it put between me and the Lord. Though I never verbalized it, my acute awareness of my vileness kept me from going to the very one who could cleanse and heal and speak peace to my soul.
The scriptures encourage us to be at peace with God. This involves, I believe, not merely assurance of our salvation, but a daily choice to be at peace with Him through walking in His truth and loving Him through acts of obedience...no matter how vile we believe ourselves to be. It is a running in the way of His commandments...which call us to hide in the shadow of His wing, to come to Him with our burdens, to rest in the knowledge of His love.
I chose to cower in the ash heap, wallowing in the filth of my sinful ways, instead of glorying in the magnitude of His grace and mercy.
Praise His name, He was not content to leave me there.
Yesterday, I woke, burdened still with my weakness and selfishness and sinfulness and then a word came to me, a shot of truth through the darkness..."His mercy is new every morning." Spontaneous prayer followed, where I recalled His truth, His promises, His goodness and the weight I'd been carrying was lifted. Then, there was strength where there had been great weakness...clarity where thoughts had been muddled...peace where there had been condemnation. And what I saw was this: where there is peace there is power. Power to obey no matter the temptation, no matter how weak we are, no matter what attack comes our way. Peace with God is the ultimate weapon against the enemy of our souls...and the enemy within ourselves.
Thank you Lord for the power of peace.
Agree with God, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you. Job 22:21