"And the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever. My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places." Isaiah 32:17-18 When we repent of our sin and abandon it, turning to Jesus for forgiveness, everything changes. God declares us righteous because Jesus has paid for our sin, and by working true repentance in our hearts He makes us become actually righteous in practice. Righteousness - just living the right way - has an effect: it brings peace. We find peace in our hearts and we will have peace in our streets. Chasing after our sinful desires always results in destruction, violence, and chaos; broken homes and shattered communities. Living by God’s definition of what’s right results in quietness. When we live contrary to God’s order we can’t trust anybody. Living God’s way builds trust between people. We can get up in the morning without having to fear the neighbors have stolen our car during the night! Our sinful hearts are always looking for reasons to leave God’s righteous rules behind. The World declares that we have grown beyond the need for such “old-fashioned superstitions.” The devil constantly tempts us by appealing to our sinful desires. But every day God gives us the freedom to choose: His way - which results in righteousness, peace, quietness and trust; or the way of the World, the flesh and the devil, with all of its results. Choose again, today. Which will it be? Lord, You know my sinful heart and it’s twisted ways. You know the constant pressure of the World and the wiles of the devil. Give me strength to choose You today. Fill me with the presence and comfort of your Holy Spirit and keep me close. Turn the hearts of our nation back to You and heal our land. Amen.
Pastor Dan Giles