Tuesday, May 27, 2008

When You Don't Get What You Order

I heard about a recently conducted study regarding low-fat/low-calorie items at restaurants.

The testing organization said that nearly 75% of items listed as "low-fat" actually contained more fat than the restaurants were advertising. And that more than 2/3's of the items listed as "low-calorie" contained more calories than they were advertising.

Sometimes we expect one thing, but get another.

We expect low fat and maybe it's not. We believe we're taking in fewer calories than we actually are.

Sin is that way. It's easy to for all of us to "enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season" (Hebrews 11:25).

We think we have our choice under control. We believe we have contained the damage of our choices upon us or those around us.

But eventually the bill comes due, or we step on the scales, and the effects of our choices take effect. We really were never in control after all.

So what do we do when we realize what we thought we ordered is not what is actually served to us?

In Biblical terms, we repent. We turn around. We send it back. We go in a different direction.

King David was a man living with the consequences of his own bad choices. He has had an adulterous affair with another man's wife. He has tried to cover it up. When that didn't work, he had the man killed. Now in Psalm 51, he finally turns around, realizes the error of his ways (after a little creative persuasion by Nathan the prophet).

Hear some of David's prayer to God:

Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your unfailing love;
blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
and cleanse me from my sin.
For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is always before me. (Psalm 51: 1-3)

Psalm 51 is one of those I keep handy in my Bible. After I've been rebellious, deaf to God's voice, or blind to His leading, I have to pull it out and remind myself of:

1.) My sin
2.) His willingness and His ability to forgive me and make me new.

Maybe it's a Psalm you'd like to keep close by too.

Grace & peace

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