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No More Excuses

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I think each of us would agree that God expects our obedience. It is in our best interest to “live by every word of God.” That His laws are good and that we ought to keep them is not something we have to think about. Do we take that expected obedience for granted? Many of us do. When we examine ourselves, do we find perfect obedience in our lives? I sure don’t. I always come up short and that is a problem I have been thinking about a lot.

Is our struggle to obey and grow in godly character just because we are human and doomed to that constant struggle? God says we are to “be holy, for I am holy” (1st Peter 1:16). He expects us to be always moving towards perfection. Our minds rebel at the thought that we could ever achieve the holiness and perfection that God expects. But if he expects it, it must be possible and we hear often from our ministers and read in our Bibles how it is possible with God’s Holy Spirit working in us. So why do we still struggle? Why does it feel like for every tiny step forward, we take two giant steps backwards? I wonder sometimes, how can I possibly be ready in time for Christ’s return, regardless of how soon or how far away it is?

I heard a sermon a few years ago explaining how when the morality of society is declining, the morality of the Church takes a dip as well. We are affected and have been affected by the moral degradation of society. A minister once explained it like standing in a room full of smokers. You may not be smoking, but when you leave the room you smell like you have been.

As a woman, I have begun to see how much I have been influenced by the society around me and I do not like what I see. Much too often, we women allow the norms of society to dictate to us. Too many women allow this in how we treat our husbands, our children, how we work, and ultimately in how much we trust God. We have been told that women deserve just as much power and responsibility as men, that we deserve this or that because of how women have been mistreated through the ages. That women have been and still are abused in many countries cannot be denied. Women are still being abused, but I don’t see society really helping those women. Instead I see many women becoming controlling, manipulative, selfish and ultimately, godless. We are being puffed up by feminism and a “holier than thou” attitude towards men.

Do you see those attitudes rubbing off on you? In Titus 2:3-5, we are told how we as women and wives are supposed to live. “The older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things— that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed.”

What Paul is saying is that if we do not strive to live this way, we ultimately blaspheme the word of God! When I read this scripture, I completely agree with what it says. But do I live it or do I make excuses? We are told to be separate from this world and it is becoming more and more clear to me how hard that is—but also how necessary! We cannot let society rub off on us anymore! God expects us to obey Him, no matter what. God only wants what is best for us; we just have to trust Him.