Tuesday, July 10, 2018
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All eyes were on the mountain-the volcano nearby. Our friends' daughter, a missionary, was living in a city that sits in the middle of several volcanoes. And one of them was showing some of those Mt. St. Helen's-type symptoms: the bulging and the boiling that suggests a possible eruption in the near future. Scientists were predicting that could very well happen. So living anywhere near that boiling mountain was, to say the least, like nerve-wracking.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Human Volcanoes."
It's tough living with a volcano that could go off any minute. Maybe that's how the people around you feel. When the stress and the pressure and the aggravation build up, many of us become a human volcano, blowing up and doing some serious damage, especially to the people we love. Like a volcano, the eruption is over fairly quickly, but the damage it does can last a lifetime.
For someone listening today, your temper is, well maybe to put it in "Star Wars" vocabulary, part of your "dark side." And our dark side, frankly, is out of control all too often. It might be the devastating things that we say and do when we're angry, or it could be our selfishness that just continually wounds and crushes people, or our sexual desires that take us where we really never should go, or this kind of sour negative attitude and bitterness that poisons our life and the lives of people around us. It's all deadly molten lava that keeps spewing out of our life, often hurting most the people we love the most.
The battle we fight with our explosive dark side isn't a new battle. It's at least 2,000 years old, as evidenced by what one Bible writer said in Romans 7, beginning with verse 15, which is our word for today from the Word of God. He says, "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do, but what I hate I do." That's a struggle we all understand too well, isn't it? The way we treat our mate, our children, our co-workers, our friends-we don't want to be that way, but we can't seem to stop being that way. He goes on to say, "I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out." How many times have we resolved to do better - and failed? And then he says, "For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do-this is what I keep on doing."
Ready for some good news? Well, there is some here. Because the Bible now shows us how to move from despair to deliverance. The writer says, "What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me...?" Okay, that's the word, that's what we need. We need a rescue! Someone who can lift us out of this sin-mess we're trapped in. "Thanks be to God," the writer continues, "through Jesus Christ our Lord!" That's where hope is! Jesus Christ came here to deal once and for all with this sin monster that's so powerful inside us. That sin cuts us off from God, now and forever. But Jesus went to a cross where He died to absorb all the power and all the death penalty of your sin and mine. Then He declared total victory three days later when He walked out of His grave under His own power!
And He wants to bring that victory into your life to forgive every sinful, hurtful things you have ever done and give you a new beginning. He stands ready to actually move into your heart and to control what you've never been able to control and to beat what has always beaten you. He's the Rescuer, reaching for you. Now it's up to you to reach back and grab His hand and tell Him, "Jesus, You're my only hope. I don't want to be like this anymore. I'm placing all my trust in you to be my Savior from my sin." With Him in your life, you don't have to be what you've always been. You can be what the Bible calls "a new creation" (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Look, if you want to begin this relationship and begin this liberating experience with Jesus Christ, let me invite you to go to our website. It's called actually ANewStory.com because it's where your new story could begin.
When Jesus was on earth, He was with His disciples in this violent storm that threatened to destroy them, until He stepped to the helm and He said three words: "Peace, be still!" The storm was gone. Today He wants to do that for the storm that's been raging inside you.