First United Methodist Church, Lewistown, PA 17044  ~  717-248-4618   ~  fumc200@outlook.com

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December 16, 2015

I used to have a Goliath temper... Yes, the easy going person many of you know wasn't always that way.

 

    As a young teenager and then young man, I would get so frustrated and then angry. There was usually something flying through the air or an object being broken. I can remember (vaguely) putting my fist through walls and doing really dumb stuff.

    I can still hear my mother's ringing rebuke, "That temper of yours is going to get you into trouble."  She was a prophetess. It did!  Trouble followed me most everywhere I went.  I was the chief culprit for allowing trouble to be my main nemesis. I chose to not address my frustrations, my failures, and my anger. It was my fault and I take full responsibility. Well, almost 30 years have elapsed and I hardly resemble the same person who used to fly into rages at the drop of a hat.

    I would love to say that my transformation was all me, but that would be an egregious lie and one you would see right through. I couldn't change me and I was stuck in a revolving decending spiral with no way out and no way up.  Then, a light filtered through my darkness and revealed a godly image long ago twisted by sin and in great need of restoration. Jesus was made real to me.  My changed life has been a gift God gave me before I realized I was hurting so many of my family and friends. He rescued me.

 

        "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. "

        (Romans 5:8, NIV)

 

By a grace so powerful and so precise, I was rescued from myself. Pride, self-centeredness, and beligerence were stripped away. Thank you Lord!

 

    Until the day I exhale for the final time, I will think (not in a regretful manner, but as a reminder to always bring grace with me wherever I go) of all the times I used my life as a battering ram instead of a means of grace.  I will always think of choosing mercy and forgiveness before any other emotion takes hold of me; I'll seek the good in others and find ways to help instead of hurt. I will treasure my family, friends, and those I have not met yet....

 

        “In your anger do not sin” : Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil

        a foothold." (Ephesians 4:26-27, NIV)

    In your struggle, stop and let Christ's revealing light shine into the dark places in your heart. Let him remove the constrictions that threaten to harm you as you harm relationships that are near you. Welcome a new you and embrace your transformed godly image that can only come through Jesus Christ. Take it from one who knows....

 

 

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