This week's memory verse:
"That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." -- Philippians 2:10-11
Sometimes, not only do we need to soak a crusty pan...we have to scrub it to get it clean. And, there are times when the baked on stuff is so hard, it just doesn't want to come off.
How many times do we NOT do what we feel God telling us to do? We'd rather stay in bed doing a crossword puzzle than go to church...it's too hard to live a "Christian" life when I'd rather be out partying with my friends...it's easier to claim there is no God or just ignore the possibility that there is a God and do our own thing.
We are not alone in being hard, crusty and disobedient...we didn't invent that trait. Those good old Israelites from the Old Testament are JUST LIKE US! They were in bondage...slaves to the Egyptians...living hard terrible lives. In Exodus 6:6-8, God promised to free them from slavery and take them to the promised land. He then performed many miracles and saved them, keeping his promises.
But, when they were about to enter the great promised land, they got scared and grumbled and cried to Moses...wanting to be slaves again instead. Their fears overcame their trust in God who saved them! (Numbers 13:3-14:4)
Moses begged God to forgive the people...God did forgive them, but he punished them by not allowing ANY of their generation, the ones who had witnessed his miracles and had been saved, to enter the promised land. They had to wander around in the desert until every member of their generation had died. THEN, their children would inherit the promised land.
Even after God's punishment, they tried to do things on their own and tried to enter the promised land (without God's blessing and protection) and were defeated in battle.
1 Samuel 15:23 says that disobedience and arrogance is worse than dealing with magic and the occult...in other words, it is evil.
We all ignore God and disobey his commands from time to time...when left unchecked, this disobedience can cause us to get hard and crusty. We need to be scrubbed clean...God will scrub us clean, but unlike the dirty pan, we have to be asked to be scrubbed. God wants us to come to him, knowing we are hard and crusty and ask for forgiveness. Without asking for it...we will remain crusty, wandering around in the desert.
Ask God to show you your crusty parts--areas of your life where disobedience and arrogance have kept you from being clean in God's eyes. Ask him to forgive you and make you willing to obey. He will scrub the crusty parts away, leaving you clean and ready to shine for him!