These are the words of the Lord to a furious and despondent Cain:
If you do what is right, won’t you be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.
— Genesis 4:7 (HCSB)
Every day of our Christian journey is the same in the midst of a kaleidoscope of days. Each day has its own problems, but the underpinning of the problems is always the same. We are part of the problems central to our lives. To live well at accord with God we must first overcome ourselves — our fury and despondency.
Sin crouches in a pose ever present, always only one movement away. It embodies our environment, and it fills our surrounds, devouring us on the occasion of despondency, feeding on our hope as we give into a passively aggressive fury. Sin wants to finish us, and very often it succeeds.
But there’s a necessary spiritual collision that will save us in the moment. God speaks; we listen. It’s as simple as that. God speaks in the dulcet tones of our lives, and our task is to be perceptive enough to intuit what He’s saying. This is the only way we’re able to rule over sin, which is the Lord’s will for the way we ought to live our lives.
This spiritual collision is the nature of His revelation as we receive it. It collides with our understanding in the form of a meteor — an everyday rebuke meeting our humility to accept this Word for Life. As His understanding crashes into our consciousness, we take on board what He’s saying, the collision makes for our contrition, and a holy collusion begins to occur.
Again, a necessary spiritual collision — us with our Lord — confers us to our contrition, where holy collusion occurs, and we join His work.
As the Lord’s revelation collides as a meteor with our sense for understanding, He speaks and we listen, and, in that, we live and grow and have our being.
The Christian life is about this modus operandi: of listening as He speaks. It’s not all about developing Christian virtue. Christian virtue, on its own, isn’t enough. It doesn’t cater for the inherency of our sinner’s state. Primary to our being is listening and doing in our going.
As the Lord’s revelation collides with our understanding, He speaks, we listen, and we then do as we’re shown.
© 2016 Steve Wickham.