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ROMANS 6

I was 15 when I accepted the Lord as my Savior. The need for salvation in my life was readily apparent to me, I was a sinner. But the question of “What do I do now?” weighed heavily on me. I was saved through the ministry of a Baptist church in Detroit and they preached repentance in the acceptance of Christ. Now I understood acceptance with no problem but on the other hand repentance was causing me some problems. It was explained to me that it was a turning away from sin, but that being human we could never achieve a sinless state. I thought “Ok, what have you got that can confuse me a little more?” I need to turn away from sin in order to attain what? Aren’t I saved now? So I made an appointment to speak with our Youth Director and he told me to read Romans 6 and then get back to him.

And, that’s what I did. Then when I had finished, I read it again and then again. It talked about grace and how we shouldn’t continue in our sin in order that grace might increase. How we who have been baptized into Christ have been baptized into His death and that how through that just as Christ was raised from the dead, we might walk in newness of life. I learned that my sin was crucified with him and done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin. Sin should no longer reign in my life and I should not obey its lusts. I should present myself to God as one alive from the dead, an instrument of righteousness to God. Sin should not reign over me for I am not under the law, but under grace. Praise the Lord! But it does not end here. Should we then continue to sin because we are under grace and not the law? When we present ourselves as slaves of obedience, we are slaves to the one we obey either to sin which results in death or obedience which results in righteousness. Because we have been freed from sin, we became slaves of righteousness.  What benefit were we deriving from the things which we are now ashamed?  The outcome of those things is death. Now, having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, we derive our benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome - eternal life.

The chapter then ends with verse 23 - “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” The chapter talks about repentance (a turning away from sin), it recognizes our human frailties and the fact that we cannot reach a sinless state, it talks about holiness in our lives, and it then promises us eternal life. Now, if you have any questions regarding what I have written do not hesitate, I am available, but first reread the chapter and then get back to me.

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QUIETNESS

Proverbs 17:1 – Better is a dry morsel and quietness with it than a house full of feasting with strife.       As I get older (inevitable), I have come to enjoy the quiet moments in life. Just  yesterday, in the doctor’s office, I was sitting in the waiting room looking forward to having a blood draw when there was a screech to end all screeches. I thought a cat had gotten its tail caught under a rocking chair. I quickly looked up and before I could locate the poor cat there was another scream and then I could hear the pitter patter of tiny shod feet running and then they passed in front of me. Two very small boys were chasing each other around and around the waiting room accompanied by incessant screaming in stratospheric ranges that absolutely pierced my ears. I could not wait to see their parent get these boys under some semblance of control. The boys made one lap, then two, then three and no one moved! There wasn’t even a head movement of any kind from any adult. And still, they ran, and screamed and giggled much to my consternation. I found myself actually looking forward to my blood draw and hoping it would be sooner rather than later.

They called my name and I went back to have my blood drawn (to the accompaniment of the boys’ screams). Once the door closed and we stepped further back into the office the screams began to fade. My blood was drawn and as I stepped through the door I could hear the two boys repeatedly screaming “momma” over and over again while pulling at the leg of a young lady reading a magazine. She never looked up.

By the time I got to the office it was time for lunch, but I could not eat. The screaming and carrying on was too much for my digestive system (notice I didn’t say delicate). I sat in my office eating a few crackers I had in a drawer and drinking a cup of coffee. I found myself reflecting on this verse and thinking “so true, so true!”                                                     

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