A Shipwrecked Faith

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Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been shipwrecked. 1 Timothy 1:19

This verse should give one pause.  Having your faith shipwrecked is a scary thought.   And, shipwrecks often occur without warning.  The storm comes in without warning,  and the ship is flung from wave to wave and ultimately sinks or ends up on land totally wrecked.  What does Paul say will cause this?   Continually violating your conscience.  But, you can avoid this by clinging to your faith in Christ and keeping a clear conscience.

In church one Sunday, the Sunday school lesson was on  listening to our conscience, and the teacher asked the question, have you ever wondered what happened to the conscience of some of the young people today?    He was talking about the young people whose names ended up in the papers, some for drugs, some for robberies, and,  even in our tiny town of about 2,000 people,  some for murder as in the next door town of 1,000.  (If we lived in Chicago would the number of murders in the paper have become just the norm?)

I was taken back to a time in my childhood when I believed I had an angel on one shoulder that would urge me to do what was right and a devil on the other shoulder who would try to get me to do the wrong thing.   As I got older, I realized the angel was my conscience.  I grew up knowing I was supposed to follow that little voice who even today will let me know if I am going off the track.  Now,  I know it is God’s Word written on my heart.   “This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the LORD. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.  Jeremiah 31:33

As I remembered my childhood angel on my shoulder, the teacher continued and his conclusion was that they could no longer hear their conscience.  That when you ignore that little voice time and time again, it gets quieter and quieter until you cannot hear it at all.   I can see my little angel if I continuously ignored her.  “Hey, listen to me,  see what happens to you when you don’t”   all the way to “OK,  Frani, if you aren’t going to listen to me this time, I am through with you.  I keep warning you,  but obviously you don’t care anymore.  Go ahead throw your life away.  I tried.”   And,  indeed, I guess as I look back that’s exactly what happened while I wondered away from God and tried to make it on my own.  Bad, bad, choices.  Thank God, he is a God who forgives. And, thank God, the little voice can return.

What does God want us to know?   We need to hold onto our faith.  Never stop believing that Jesus,  the Son of God, died for our sins and believing in Him secures us a place with Him in heaven.   Next, keep a clear conscience.  Don’t do what that little voice tells you not to do.   Don’t make his /her voice get quieter and quieter until you can’t hear the good advise.   God has written his law in your minds and your hearts.  Listen to it.  The rewards are that God will be your God.  You will avoid shipwreck,  and you will rule with Jesus.  Click here to read a post about Reigning with Jesus.

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