Dear Church Family,

Greetings in Jesus’ name!

Several years ago I was speaking to someone about what believers should or should not be engaged in or allow into their lives. They had an interesting reply, “I’m strong enough to handle that.” We were in disagreement with one another about this particular thing being acceptable in their lives. It was just a few years later that they were overcome by sin and I have no doubt it was related to the things they gave themselves permission to do.

Our position as Christians, on anything, should not be whether or not we think we are strong enough, but whether or not God is glorified. In 1 Corinthians 10:31, Paul is making the point that whatever we do, (and we could safely include think or say as well) should be to the glory of God. It should be to the high praise and honor of God and investing Him with dignity. It simply is not a matter of being able to handle it.  It is a matter of “…Do the things that I permit in my life increase God’s honor, praise, and dignity in the sight of others; or does it diminish God’s honor, praise, and dignity?”

When we are making decisions this should be the first thing we should ask ourselves. I have noticed that the cooler people’s relationship with God gets the more “permissibility” they allow in their lives. Many are the times when I have encountered people who are “free” in their decisions and lifestyles. The correct term would be “loose.” They are “loose” in standards of lifestyle and personal holiness; therefore, they give themselves permission to do things that would be questionable in regard to glorifying God. These things will not likely have an immediately negative effect, but will have a negative effect cumulatively. It doesn’t immediately weaken you, but it will begin to have a weakening effect. Like Samson, they may be able to shake themselves a few times and win the battle, but at some point their strength will be gone and they will be overcome. 

As you proceed into the New Year, get into the habit of questioning whether or not your decisions and activities are investing God with dignity. It will be a strength in your life. 

I call you blessed!