March 8, 2016: Say Yes
“I will return to my house from which I came.” (v. 24)
As a youngster in Sunday school I learned a song: “Have Courage, My Boy, to Say No.” Think of all the misery we create for ourselves because we lack the courage to say “No!”
But there is more to the Christian life than saying no. People talk about how they are against this vice and against that vice, how they oppose this sin and that sin, and you can’t help but wonder what they do approve of. You can’t get to heaven just by criticizing other people’s sins.
In Jesus’ parable of the empty house, the unclean spirit discovers that his former haunt has been swept clean, but no righteous replacements have taken his place. So he moves back in, and invites seven cronies to join him. “And the last state of that person is worse than the first,” says Jesus.
There is an affirmative quality to the Christian life. There is a “yes” at the heart of our faith. “In him [Jesus] every one of God’s promises is a ‘yes,’” says Paul (2 Corinthians 1:20). It is not enough to say no to what is wrong; we must also say yes to Christ. It is not enough to be delivered from the power of Satan; one must pledge allegiance to the kingdom of God.
Prayer: Lord, I say “yes” to you.
Today’s devotional was written by Lou Lotz, the pastoral leader of Central Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This Lenten series comes from Words of Hope, whose mission is to build the church in the hard places through media. To learn more about the organization or subscribe to Words of Hope’s daily devotions, visit www.woh.org.