|Dirty Hands - #6936|
|A Word With You - Your Hindrances|
Monday, August 12, 2013
Download MP3 (right click to save)
It's a nice deal when your auto mechanic is also your good friend. And I've had that opportunity – Christian brothers. What I've really appreciated about my friend, the auto mechanic, was the fact that he worked long, and hard, and professionally.
However, it was unfortunate that when I stopped by his station, I was usually all dressed up on my way someplace. Now, instinctively, what would we do with a friend? We'd extend our hands to shake. Well, we would immediately hesitate and both of us would look at the layers of grease on his hand and then we'd look at my suit and my white shirt and my clean hands. Yeah, pretty boy over here. I didn't have any time to clean up, and he would say, "We'd better not." Now, I'd love to shake with my buddy, but it just might be a problem. It's actually best to get the dirt off your hand before you reach for a totally clean one.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Dirty Hands."
Our word for today from the Word of God is from 1 Timothy 2:8 . Guess what it's about? Hands. "I want men everywhere," Paul says, "to lift up holy hands in prayer without anger or disputing." Now, we could probably get into a little debate on that most cosmic theological issue of all, "Should we pray with upraised hands?" You say, "Ron, I pray with my hands in my pocket." Well, listen, I'm not going to get into that. There's a much larger point that Paul is making here.
Whether you lift up your hands to God literally or symbolically to offer praise to the Lord, to get something you need from the Lord, the bigger issue is this: What kind of hands are you lifting up? He says here, "Lift up holy hands to the Lord." Make sure your hands are clean before you reach up for a holy God.
The failure to do that? Well, that just might explain why God hasn't reached back toward you yet with the answer you've been seeking. You've praised Him. You've petitioned Him over and over again, but you haven't heard anything back. Could it be that you haven't cleaned up a part of you that in His eyes is giving you unholy hands? See, a sinless God cannot bless your sin. He can't respond to sin.
And so if you could hear His voice, He might be saying, "I see you reaching for Me, and I've got something I want to give you, but what's that in your hand? See, I can't have that." So, before you reach out to God, on a 24-hour day basis, review the last 24 hours. Where did you get some dirt on your spiritual hands? You might need to look at the last hour. Has there been some dishonesty; you've told something less than the truth? Did you display a little less than total integrity? Have there been impure thoughts, impure motives? Have you hurt someone in these last hours? Have you neglected someone?
Whatever the dirt; deal with the dirt first. In fact, this scripture talks about anger and disputing. It suggests that maybe what we need to take care of is some broken relationships before we ever lift up our hands, so our hands will be holy. The Bible says, "If you have something against your brother, or your brother has something against you, leave the altar. Leave your sacrifice there and go and make it right with him." David said, "If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me." There's so much He wants to do for you; so much He has to bless you with. But He can't hand it to you while your hands are dirty with sin.
Whether you reach for God literally or symbolically, would you be sure your hand is emptied of anything sinful. If you want God to put His hand in yours, be sure you're not offering Him a dirty hand.