by Lois Coad
I never thought of myself as a rebel. I am not someone in a movie like “Rebel without a Cause,” “Johnny Rebel,” “Nashville Rebel,” or “Proud Rebel.” A rebel was someone like James Dean or Johnny Depp, but not me. I was a people pleaser. I wanted those close to me to be happy.
Yet, I resist change. My natural tendency is to rebel. I know that is shocking, but God says we all do it.
So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.
man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!”
I love the word “wretched” because it completely describes this war within my being. It’s not that I do bad things. I just have a bad attitude. See the word “just.” I use that word to minimize my sin. We use phrases like “It’s
the way I am” or “I am
good enough.” But “just” is the first part of the word “justice” and there is no justice without the blood of Jesus Christ.
Peter knew firsthand about this war. He denied knowing the very LORD who he boasted he would die for. He knew his own personal demons, his own weaknesses, yet Jesus went out of his way to tell Peter that he loved him. What ways do you rebel?
There are two reasons for my rebelliousness. First is the broken person inside who thinks I do not deserve God’s goodness. Second is the evil one outside who wants to destroy me because he cannot destroy God. I am not only a rebel with a cause, I am a rebel with two causes. Both are detrimental.
We come to God a mess and God responds by loving us in our messiness. He tells us that we need not fear. He says we are clothed in his righteousness. He says he took the punishment for our sins. This truly is good news.
I may be a rebel, but I am not a hopeless case. Though I wake up to this war in my soul every morning, I have choices and these choices are based on what I know about God as well as what I know about myself.
God knows and loves me inside and out and does not want me to stay in my wretchedness. God promises to always be with me. If I leave my cell phone at home, he is there. If I cannot get out of bed, he is there. If I cannot sleep, he is there. If I do not have answers, God does. I do not know the future, God does. So, I need not fear or rebel.
What if I rebel against the rebellion? When I let God control my life, I do not need to be afraid that I won’t measure up. I can repel thoughts of regret or unworthiness. I can ask God how to serve Him and others. Instead of being a rebel against God, I can be a rebel for God. Won’t you do the same not only this morning but every morning? Be a rebel with a cause.