Whatsoever Things Are True
by Dan Coburn
Pastor, Emmanuel Baptist Church
Somewhere around 1975 to 1977 (as I recall), the blockbuster movie "Jaws" came out. My wife and I were newlyweds, and due to the hype, it took a pile of effort to get her to go with me. 
My little brother David came along as we went to a packed house in Medford Oregon, anxious to be scared out of our wits. I'm not going to critique the movie, as I'm satisfied you mostly all have seen it. I would like to relate something that happened there that is more unforgettable to me. 
We sent David to the lobby to score us some drinks, popcorn, chocolate covered raisins and whatever else a young person could consume between meals. He was gone for the standard amount of time, and (again as I recall), during the Richard Dryfus diving scene he began to make the awkward lateral walk through ocean of people that happened to occupy our row.  So here he is, packing a pallet of goodies, ice jingling in the big gulp size cups, and David sliding sideways as folks try in vain to get out of his way, all the while he keeps repeating: "excuse me, excuse me, pardon  me ......".  Then it happened. The wreck of all wrecks. He tripped in the silence, and the ensuing crash was deafening and exceeded only by the screams --- not from the movie. I cringed, my wife slid down in her chair as to take cover, and David, Without missing a beat began to shuffle the other direction, back to the lobby saying: "excuse me, excuse me,  pardon me.......". The place erupted in laughter in spite of the movie.  
Let's turn the Spiritual Switch.  How many times  have you, with the best of intentions, had a wreck?  It could be anything from a car accident to saying something you regret deeply. Do you have people you have hurt - or - someone you keep hurting even though you don't want to?  Have you let God down? Have you done what the Bible calls - "Grieving the Spirit" or "Quenching the Spirit"?  Have you been in a long state of perpetual sin and bought the bill of goods that says it's just too late for you? That you have too much spilt milk or water under the bridge, and until you "clean up your act", you are not eligible for the forgiveness that is found only in Christ? 
Don't let Satan beguile you thus.  Don't wait to clean yourself up, cause you can't. It is the Holy Spirit's job to convict and convince the world w/regard to sin, and He is infinitely better at it. And listen, "God commended (displayed) his love for us in that while we were yet (still) sinners, Christ died for (instead of) us". Romans 5:8.  And as for making a complete mess of things, Righteousness is available in Christ, and Proverbs 24:16 says: "Although a righteous man falleth seven times, he will rise again......"  Seven is the Hebrew number for completion or maturity, so what this is saying is even when you make a complete mess of things, God can and will restore you - 1st John 1:9   
I recently heard a great preacher say: "You can take a thousand steps away from God, but when you turn around, it only takes one step toward Him".   Don't buy Satan's lies. Be like David, and the second you crash, turn back toward God and His Word. Remember, "These are not just idle words for your life;  they are your life" - Deut. 32:47. 
God Bless.

Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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