This month’s guest post writer is Tammy Hayes, a long-time friend and mentor. We planted a church together back in the day and are still doing ministry in a variety of ways – most of it outside of a formal church setting.
Tammy hails from Houston but has become a small-town girl, residing in Tyler, Texas. She teaches middle school, runs a side-hustle as a healthy meal prepper, writes and enjoys her four grown children as often as the opportunity allows. This devotional is one of many she wrote as she climbed out of the ashes of her burned down life, the life she had known and loved as a minister’s wife for 28 years. Unexpected betrayal wrecked her life, only to have God show up morning after morning and lonely night after lonely night to rebuild what she now knows was His plan to save it! This devo reminds us to pay attention to the God-values in our lives and use our voice to guard them even when those we love seem willing to ignore the truths of scripture to which we must hold strong. You can connect with her on her Tamfooderie Instagram.
Neglecting a Thing
by Tammy Hayes
Neglecting to do a good thing may put us in graver danger than having done a thing we shouldn’t have ever done. Hebrews 13:16
Overlooking a matter is a scriptural encouragement, as with forgiving a brother’s sin against the backdrop of repentance or not holding it against your relationship in future interactions. But overlooking WHAT matters is an unsafe and altogether different thing. We may think we are being Christlike when we see others sin and respond with “who are we to judge?” However the Bible clearly teaches that “who we are to judge” is God’s inheritance. We are His chosen people, and to judge rightly that which is in direct opposition to His Word is EXACTLY what we are to do. It sounds foreign to our ears because we have sought the familiarity and comfort of a tickle and traded His truth for our own pleasures. We have sought the joy of man over the joy of the Lord so long that we miss the daily grievances of the Holy Spirit and allow them in our very homes and worse, to take residence in our hearts.
Without reproof or removal of them, by default, we give hearty approval, accepting them without naming them we have traded our own affections for the Lord for those of our children, or spouse, our work or hobby and we sin against a jealous God when we do.
Not To See
Asking God for HIS perspective and revelation of truth has brought a lot of “unseen” things into my focus. Things I have for too many years overlooked. When you choose “not to see” or look away from that which is clearly contrary to the scriptures you give it place in your life. Once you do that, it has the opportunity to take over real estate and it becomes much harder to deal with.
If we neglect to call it sin and excuse the validity of its danger in our life, it will grow bigger. No dark place of sin for a season will ever satisfy the loss of a man’s soul, but the enemy of our soul wants us to think it will.
Recognizing Satan’s arsenal of attacks and knowing thyself are necessary safeguards. Identify your weak spots: is it lust, greed, pride, gluttony, envy, wrath, slothfulness or any combo? Whatever you know of yourself and your old nature, commit it to the Lord now, rededicate your loyalties to God and cry out for his mercy to help you steer clear of the landmines. Make hard decisions and set strong boundaries!
Choose the Lord on the front end and call sin-sin. Start with yourself. Pray from a point of humility and submission, knowing you are wrestling not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and every dark thing. Claim the blood of Jesus removing sins strong position over you. Replace the fleshly desire right then in the moment with scripture and look for honest Christian friends who you will allow to know your sin struggle and help provide a way out for you.
I give testimony in the Lord that you will see quickly that the Lord your God is a strong tower for you to run safely into for refuge. Be encouraged that when you stay the course with God, you are reaping a blessing that has generational implications and rewards. He has prepared a future for you and your children’s children. He is an everlasting Father, unchanging, and ever faithful to His promises.
Psalm 103:17-18 reminds us: But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon those that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children; to such as keep his covenant and to those who remember his commandments to do them.
Stay With God
It is not particular to any one man to struggle with sinful temptations. This is the humanity of us all, but to them who are called according to his purposes, those of us set apart, we must learn how to keep guard of our heart, soul, mind, & strength. This is why the scripture exhorts us over and again to watch and pray and to pray without ceasing. This simply means staying in a spirit of prayer even as you go about the mundane of living. These are among the good things we should never neglect and should continue sharing with one another and the church as they are the sacrifices in which God is pleased.
Staying with God through our sinful realities will hold us together in Him, He sees and He knows and has forgiven your yesterday, today, & tomorrow. Stay with God no matter the sin you have committed. Confess your temptations for the ones knocking on the door of your heart. His grace is sufficient for thee! There is now no condemnation for those who are IN Christ Jesus.
Blessings as you go, call out what matters, and stay with God!