Apples of Gold

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Choose Life

‘Choose life.’

Deuteronomy Chapter 30 Verse 19

There are many things that I dislike about this time of year. While for many it is a time of joy and celebration, yet for others it holds nothing but heartache and pain. I suppose that my own emotions today are somewhere in between.

As I look back, I do so not only upon 2003 but upon all the other years of my life as well.  It is difficult not to think of parents, loved ones and friends who helped us along life's pathway for a while - only to be taken from us. I am so thankful for all the good memories that I have, memories which no man can take from me.

But I can't dwell on my past. I stand at the dawn of yet another year in my sojourn. What will 2004 hold for me? Do I look through 'rose tinted' glasses, or do I look with foreboding? Do I see much fruit, or am I to come face to face with more giants?

I need a reality check, and I must first go to the place where resolutions are scorned but where repentance brings joy in the presence of angels. I take my soul to the place where truth met with mercy, where righteousness and peace kissed mutually. It is the place where chaos turns to order, where fear is cast out and where I am accepted 'just as I am.'

I have grown fond of that place over the years. There have been days when I confess that I have not felt 'the need' to go. There have been mornings when I am simply carrying on from where I dwelt through the night watches.

But there is not a day when I do not visit it. I am a spiritual being, and I need energizing and this is the place where my spiritual batteries are charged.

Repentance is the order of the day, not only for my sins in 2003 but for the sins already committed in 2004! I am filthy and I need cleansing, and I know of no other place to go than to the foot of the Cross.

It is here that I behold the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. It is here, having made confession of my sins and shortcomings, that I am washed in the fountain opened for sin and uncleanness.

I cannot make myself clean, but God can and does. I do not wash away my sins, but the blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son can and does. I do not presume that my sins are forgiven, but I simply trust Him for it!

I do what God tells me to do, and soon I am aware that my filthy garments have been changed for robes of righteousness, robes given to me by God Himself. All His children are clothed alike, not one better than the other. 

What I have done is to choose life. I have chosen Jesus to be my Saviour, my Friend, my Guide and my Companion for today. He called me as He will call many today to repentance. He saved me by dying on the cross for me. He feely offered me salvation, and He freely offered me hope and life. He offers you the same today.

I have my plans for today as I am sure that you have. They may turn out as expected or they may not. For you see I have committed my way today to my Lord. I have learned that His way is always best.

Today He holds the reins of my life and that is the way I want things to remain. Should I take control again then pain and sorrow will not be far away.

Today is the start of a new spiritual adventure. It's called "the rest of my life." I know not how long it will last, but I am thankful that my Guide knows the way that I take.

He does all things well, and hitherto He has helped me. An eternity with my Beloved beckons, but while breath remains I am happy to surrender my all to Him.

This morning He gave me a choice. I chose life, and I pray that you would do so as well. Leave behind "the years that the locusts have eaten," and come, follow Jesus. May you enjoy a blessed New Year. May you enjoy Jesus.

We have a message that should not be kept to ourselves, so make someone's day special, and tell them the Good News. Tell them to choose life. Tell them to choose Jesus.

"The Lord thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live. And the Lord thy God will put all these curses upon thine enemies, and on them that hate thee, and persecuted thee. And thou shalt return and obey the voice of the Lord, and do all his commandments which I command thee this day. And the Lord thy God will make thee plenteous in every work of thine hand, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy land, for good, for the Lord will again rejoice over thee for good, as he rejoiced over thy fathers - if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep his commandments and his statutes which are written in this book of the law, and if thou turn unto the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul."

Deuteronomy Chapter 30 verses 6 - 10.

Author: Iain Mackenzie        Edited by: Pastor al Moak