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Vital signs- Tuesday, April 23rd, 2024

Theres a 4WD with license plate that reads "WASN’T ME". 

I would never park next to it! I’m too afraid that if he damaged my truck he’d never accept responsibility. The license plate is pre-emptive protection! “If something goes wrong, it wasn’t me!” 

Sometimes we can walk through life with an inner defense lawyer perpetually trying to reason for our goodness and shun responsibility for our dysfunction. If something is wrong "it wasn’t me!”

We tend not to talk about ‘sin’ anymore. Even in Christian circles and preaching, we can shy away from the concept of sin. “We don’t want to offend unnecessarily”, we say to ourselves. Our culture tells us people aren’t inherently sinful; they’re victims—victims of society, government, bad parenting, poor education, or some other external force. (This doesn’t discount that genuine victims exist). But when we continue to point the finger, we’ll never take responsibility. 

Complacency often marks our attitude towards the sin in our lives. We ignore it, minimise it, cover it, or worse we cozy up to it. We get as close to 'the line’ as we can without stepping over it. 

But sin has a hardening, callousing effect in our lives. It’s dangerous. It makes our hearts progressively impervious to the conviction of the Spirit. 

The antidote we’re told (3:13) is to exhort, warn, urge, and encourage each other. This is not a ‘gotchya’ culture of pointing out others' failures, but a genuine love for our brothers and sisters. 

How can you encourage those around you not to be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness?

”That is why the Holy Spirit says, “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled, when they tested me in the wilderness. There your ancestors tested and tried my patience, even though they saw my miracles for forty years. So I was angry with them, and I said, ‘Their hearts always turn away from me. They refuse to do what I tell them.’ So in my anger I took an oath: ‘They will never enter my place of rest.’” Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against God. For if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ. Remember what it says: “Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled.” And who was it who rebelled against God, even though they heard his voice? Wasn’t it the people Moses led out of Egypt? And who made God angry for forty years? Wasn’t it the people who sinned, whose corpses lay in the wilderness? And to whom was God speaking when he took an oath that they would never enter his rest? Wasn’t it the people who disobeyed him? So we see that because of their unbelief they were not able to enter his rest.“

‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭3‬:‭7‬-‭19‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Team Wade loves you and is praying for you ❤️👊

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