John Ortberg concludes Chapter 12 of Soul Keeping by considering the second and third levels where the soul gets trapped.
2. Sinfulness. The next ring on the target, sinfulness, has to do with our orientation. Pastor Ortberg defines the difference between sinful acts and sinfulness:
“Sin is a deeply entrenched pattern way below the surface- insidious- like a disease that just leaks out of us without any effort. My sinful acts are premeditated; my sinfulness is more like a habit I can’t control.”
John notes that our willpower can override a sinful habit for a moment or two. Ultimately, he quips, “Habits eat willpower for breakfast.” Our only hope lies in a new set of habits, not more willpower. The goal is soul- survival.
3. Original sin. Original sin is the bull’s eye- the bottom line reason for why we sin in the first place. Our brokenness is very complex. While our wounds, scars, and disappointments contribute, our natural inclination toward sin is at the core.
Yet we serve a perfect Savior who not only is patient with us, but stands ready to forgive when we fail. The words Ruth Graham (wife of Billy) chose to have engraved on her tombstone reflect our loving Savior: “End of construction. Thank you for your patience.”
Today’s question: How has Jesus’ patience been a blessing during your desert, land between time? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “The posture of the soul”