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SERMON: Growling Like a Bear

“We all growl like bears; we moan mournfully like doves. We look for justice but find none; for deliverance, but it is far away. For our offenses are many in Your sight, and our sins testify against us.” Isaiah 59:11-12a

“It’s not faaaaaair!” How many times have I chastised my kids for their whining, discontented attitudes, only to turn around and say the same thing to God?

To God, we all sound like angry bears and distressed birds when we complain about not getting that promotion, or finding a spouse, or whatever else we feel we deserve. But God isn’t laughing when he hears us moaning and grumbling.

He knows that what comes out of our mouths is a direct result of what is in our hearts — in this case, sin.

In these verses, Isaiah was speaking to the nation of Israel, who had turned its back on God and was pursuing its own unjust interests. But those who follow God and His ways should also take these words to heart. Even one little sin can begin to blur our vision of — and our desire for — God’s just plans.

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  • When we repent of our sins and trust that God’s justice is greater than our own fair-o-meter, we will begin to see His hand at work more clearly.
  • These verses aren’t promising that God will right all wrongs done to us when we confess our sins to Him. But they do give us hope that we won’t languish under the burden of bitterness and self-pity any longer.

    When our eyes are fixed on Christ alone, we won’t whine like selfish toddlers when we experience unfair treatment. Instead, we can be confident that He will provide for us in the midst of life’s injustices, and He will see us through them in His perfect time.

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    God, please forgive me for the sins I have committed today. Help me to trust that You are just, and that Your perfect plan will be accomplished in my life. Use even the unfair circumstances in my life for my spiritual good, and for Your eternal glory. Amen.

    Thought: Is there a sin in your life that you need to confess to God? Are you hanging onto self-pity and bitterness because life has dealt you harshly? God is ready and waiting to forgive. All you need to do is ask! Then, in light of God’s just mercy, think of how you might begin to forgive others.

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