He used to be Colonial Williams, a highly respected officer in the Armed Forces. His men thought him tough, fair, and worthy of his leadership role. His wife said he was a good husband. But in his neighborhood, he was a stealthy sex predator, feared and hated by all.
The heart is full of wickedness, says the Bible. So, though everyone is shocked that an upstanding member of the community could do such evil, believers in Christ are not surprised. Those of us willing to be utterly honest know the depth of our own hearts, along with the murders and immoralities and perversions we are capable of. Our relationships to human needs - food, shelter, clothing, sex - have been totally corrupted by our sinful natures. Under our veneers of respectability lurk the horrors of depravity.
The grace of God can't be fathomed, pulling us into his orbit fully cleansed by the blood of his Son. His gift of forgiveness lifts our heads so we can walk down the street unashamed, knowing who we would be without him, even when we remember who we used to be.
One of the best things about being a Christian, fully devoted to the Savior, is knowing how incapacitated we were by sin. We live in this wonderful freedom, unable to explain the delights of mercy to those who have not experienced it. Angels long to know what we know, the pleasure of a heart replaced and continually washed.
Remember to share the bliss of following Christ with a heart that is hurting around you. Inside, we all long to be fully clean and pure. Don't believe it? Look at all the religions, cults, and self-improvement books on your local bookstore's shelves.
*"So I decided there is nothing better than to enjoy food and drink and to find satisfaction in work. Then I realized that these pleasures are from the hand of God. For who can eat or enjoy anything apart from him? God gives wisdom, knowledge, and joy to those who please him. But if a sinner becomes wealthy, God takes the wealth away and gives it to those who please him. This, too, is meaningless—like chasing the wind. … So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God." Ecclesiastes 2:24–26; 3:12–13 NEV
*Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst." John 6:35 NLT
*For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 NIV