Tag Archives: sin

Something Smells…

27 Jul

My computer tells me it’s 4:23am. I’ve spent the last couple of hours in my bed trying to fall asleep. But no luck. You know when your mind just races from one idea to the next and from memory to memory? And your body is so tired but your mind seems to be on steroids or caffeine or some sort of highly concentrated energy drink? That’s kinda what’s happening right now. It’s like my brain is a bee hive and thousands of bees are racing to get nectar to the hive to make honey, but the mother bee just needs a break and wants to take a nap. A long nap.

So, in hope that typing up my thoughts will help my mind calm down, I’m bothering you all with this post of mine. Please forgive my mind. It doesn’t mean to be so annoying.

4:29am. How time is so bothersome!

I visited my nonna last Sunday. (For all you non-Italians, “nonna” means grandmother.) She turned 78 years old. It’s such an interesting experience going to my nonna’s house. When I was in elementary school, my mom would drop me off at nonna’s house during the summer because there was no one home to look after me. My nonna and I would pass around a tennis ball with old hockey sticks from the mid 1980’s. On top of her garage lies a giant green traffic light. No red or yellow, just the green. It’s a nice touch of genuine Italian-Montreal decor. In the garage, there is a small television with cable, an old fridge to keep all the Pepsis almost freezing, a beat up sofa and some sort of suspended futon that rocks back and forth.

You enter the house by the side door, which is adjacent to the garage. You never enter by the front door. It’s just not done. Once inside, you have two choices: downstairs or upstairs. If you choose downstairs, you have the luxury of two lazy boys and unlimited cable TV. You also have the incredible inconvenience of a five-and-a-half-foot ceiling. If you choose upstairs, you enter the main kitchen and dining room with chandeliers and furniture that belong in some neo-Victorian cottage in Newcastle, England.

Everything in my nonna’s house is better off not being discovered. For instance, you do not want to open the cabinet next to the bathroom, nor do you want to take a peak behind those wooden boards that hide the basement shower. Last Sunday I decided to open the cabinet in the bathroom. Very soon after, a potent blend of old razors, Q-Tips and towels gone bad hit me like a tidal wave hits a fishing boat. What a smell that was! Like I said, it’s better not to open things that look suspicious.

In some weird way, it makes me think about how we keep spiritual problems from God and from Christian friends and family. It might sound somewhat cliché, but sin bottled up inside are never good for you. Actually that doesn’t sound “somewhat” cliché. It sounds incredibly cliché. But it’s true nevertheless. Just like those old towels in the cabinet, it starts to stink and funk up the place.  It’s essential that you open up to God, first and foremost. If you’re too afraid or ashamed to go to God with your sin, then you’ll never conquer it.

1 John 1:6-10If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

The Lord Almighty has promised us complete forgiveness and purification if we choose to go to Him with our sin. There is no reason for us to conceal our sin from him. You gotta expose it. You have to open that cabinet and let all that stink come out. It’s like flossing before going to bed. You’re disgusted by what’s caught between your teeth, but you have to get in there and get all that gunk out. Or else, it’ll turn that white smile into a brown nightmare.

All this elaborate description of my nonna’s house to say one thing: don’t let your teeth rot. Don’t let that cabinet stink. Don’t let your heart turn bad.

5:30am. Back to bed.

Advertisements

Forgiven Mocking Forgiver

4 Apr

We often take this time of year to remember Jesus Christ on the cross dying for us, for our sins. We think of the pain of the whips piercing his flesh, the crown of thorns pressed on his brow and the torturous walk up to Calvary. Then we remember how nails pierced his palms and his feet and how he stayed on that cross for hours upon hours and we mourn at the cross as Jesus’ mother did.

But we often forget one important aspect.

Stuart Townend says it perfectly in the second verse of his modern hymn How Deep the Father’s Love for Us.

“Behold the Man upon a cross

My sin upon His shoulders

Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice

Call out among the scoffers.”

We are no better than the soldiers who spat on Jesus 2,000 years ago. We mocked him at the cross and we mock Him when we sin, when we take the cross for granted. We are ashamed at our mocking voice, but in His awesome grace, he says to God to forgive us while we mock Him.

That’s the beauty of the cross: we are forgiven while we mock the one who forgives us.

The Dark Secret of Light

21 Mar

The darkness of the night craves for the light of the day.

In Ephesians 5:1-21, Paul plays around with this image of darkness and light. “for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light” (v.8), “Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.” (v.11), “But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. […]” (v.13-14).

Here’s an interesting fact: darkness happens when there is no light. Darkness craves light, there is no trace of light in darkness. In fact, the dark secret of light is that light is the complete opposite of darkness. Paul tells us in this passage that we are the light and the world is the darkness. Paul is telling the Ephesian church to be the complete opposite of the world.

Keeping these facts in mind, let’s see how well we’d score on the Being a Light” test.

If we are to be the complete opposite of the world, then we must not watch the same movies or TV as the world, we must not listen to the same music as the world, we must not dress the same as the world and we cannot talk or act the same as the world. If we do even just one of these things, then we are not being a light.

Remember, there is absolutely no light that resembles darkness. How much does your life resemble the world’s life? How weak of a light are you?

The Falsehood in Tiger Woods’ Speech

20 Feb

As you may or may not know, Tiger Woods gave a speech this week on national television regarding his unfaithfulness to his wife. In the speech, he apologizes to his wife, family, friends and fans for his bad behavior. Being a fan of his golfing skills, I’m very glad that he chose to do this. I believe that he was very sincere and that he truly is sorry for having disappointed so many people.

There was one aspect of his speech that I did not like.  Ten minutes into his speech (one minute into the video below), he mentions the reason why he cheated on his wife.

Tiger Woods: “People probably don’t realize it, but I was raised a Buddhist and I actively practice my faith from childhood until I drifted away from it in recent years. Buddhism teaches that a craving for things outside ourselves causes an unhappy and pointless search for security. It teaches me to stop following every impulse and to learn restraint. Obviously, I lost track of what I was taught.”

Tiger Woods doesn’t realize that his problem is inside his heart. He didn’t sin because he was craving for something outside himself, but because his heart was craving for something other than God. Tiger’s heart has not tasted the joy of God’s salvation and he fell into the same trap King David did (Psalm 51). The difference between King David and Tiger Woods is that David realized the true reason why he sinned: a lack of God’s joy in his heart.

Buddhism teaches meditation and unity and harmony inside our souls, but what Tiger doesn’t understand is that no matter how nice he is inside, his heart is still stained black with sin. That will never change until he craves forgiveness of sin from the almighty God who loves despite his mistakes.

Tiger has a serious craving for sexual sin and this problem will not go away with therapy or meditation, but only by the cherishing of the joy of God’s salvation. I pray that he gets this right one day.

My Testimony by Krystian Jaskula

23 Jan

Our youth went on a retreat with the youth from Laval Christian Fellowship last weekend. It was a great time of fellowship and unity between the two youth groups. My dear friend and brother in Christ decided to share his testimony of the retreat and of his life. I pray that these words would encourage you as much as they encourage me.

First, I hesitated if I should have come or not to the retreat because, primarily, I am not much of a communicative person and people like me are boring to hang out with, I assume.

Since I was 9 or so, I would lock myself away in my room most of the time because my parents were yelling at each other. Early in 2002, they divorced, my education dropped and my loneliness increased. At age of 13, I struggled with suicide up until 15. And from suicidal thoughts to pornography and video games addiction. At 17, I heard something about God but I could not care less. At 18, a sinner’s prayer and no change. At 19, the cross… and the central citadel of my life disrupt radically and up until today, Christ, the cross and the gospel are most preferred.

There are nights that I can’t sleep because God is neglected and despised even in our type of contemporary Christianity that is all about comfort and to grow wild than to be like Jesus.

I make short videos on YouTube (username: whitenine) and my goal is that at least one person would see a glimpse. Only one glimpse of the glories that are found in Christ and Christ will be precious unto them- whoever they are, young or old. There is no one like the God from the Scriptures in absolutely everything.

At the retreat, I saw God pleased, Christ appreciated and unity.

—-

PS:: Needless to ask, because I would rather declare that everything was made for Christ, by Christ and through Christ. And that, it pleased God the Father that whatever divine excellence is in Him so it is also in His Son than to ask you “what do you want?” So, I ask: What do you want? And, if you answer, “I want Christ” then I must ask you if that is true?!

Remember, Only one life will soon be past; only what’s done FOR CHRIST WILL LAST.

Keep The Joy

19 Sep

12Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.

13Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
and sinners will return to you.

One thing that the Lord has been pressing on my heart ever since He first came into my life is the theme of joy. I believe that it is crucial for Christians to find their true joy in the fact that God has adopted them as His children, the joy of His salvation.

In Psalm 51, David cries out to the Lord for forgiveness. In verse 12, he asks God to restore to him something that had departed from him, salvation’s joy.

There was no more joy in him when he sinned. That is the reason that he asks God to renew it in him, so that he would not commit that sin again. In return, David says that he will teach sinners the ways of the Lord and that they will turn to God.  These two verses make two very important claims.

1. We easily fall into sin if the joy of God’s salvation does not dwell in our hearts.

2. Sinners will not listen to us and will not turn to God when we evangelize if we do not show the joy of His salvation.

King David learnt from his mistake and realized the importance of God’s joy in his heart. I encourage you to learn from David. Keep the joy of God’s salvation in your hearts and pray every day that it would not depart from you. In return, you will not fall into sin as easily and you’re non-christian friends will be inspired by the joy they see in you, and by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, they just might turn to God.

Father, hear my prayer,

may the joy of Your salvation dwell in my heart,

and may I show this joy to the world

so that sinners would turn to You and give You praise.

%d bloggers like this: