Happy New Year, readers. I pray all is well with you. New years are synonymous with new beginnings. This is a time for resolutions. My New Year’s resolution is to totally eradicate cursing from my speech. Also – and most importantly – I want to do better with managing my frustration. Mark 7:15 says “There is nothing that enters a man from outside which can defile him; but the things which come out of him, those are the things that defile a man.” That is something I really have to remember – we all should. I am not a perfect man; none of us are. Lately I have had a problem with people shouting, “Nigger!” and other foul obscenities when I pass their cell blocks. It hurts. Usually, I ignore it and keep moving, but lately it has caused me some stress. Admittedly, I have allowed it to disrupt my peace. I was persecuted during my trial because of my color. My lawyer recently filed a motion for a new trial citing – among other things – the injection of race into my trial. Reading the transcripts stirred up emotions in me. Those emotions were compounded by the fact that people were screaming racial slurs. I allowed that to affect my peace and my character. That dirty old devil will find any chink in our armor.
Now there is such a thing as righteous anger. The kind of anger Jesus expressed in Luke 19:45-47:
[Then He went into the temple and began to drive out those who bought and sold in it, saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house is a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’” And He was teaching daily in the temple. But the chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people sought to destroy Him,]
I was pretty hard on myself for allowing my peace to be disrupted, but my very wise and kind friend, Tom, reminded me that as long as I recognize my sin and ask forgiveness with a pure heart, all is well and I should move on. I thank God for the great christian support He has put in my life. You know folks, all Christians stumble from time to time. I am but a babe in the Word and all babes fall from time to time while learning to walk. The important thing is that we pick ourselves up and soldier on. I have been incarcerated 27 months and for the most part, I have been very peaceful, thanks to my Lord Jesus Christ. No matter what we struggle with, we can overcome it with faith in Christ and prayer.
This is a new year, so we must put aside the past. Forget about yesterday and live for today, knowing always that there is hope for tomorrow – as long as we have faith. Hallelujah! Praise God! As the Lord forgives us, so should we forgive others as well as ourselves. Our number one resolution should be to get closer to Christ and be more like Him. Remember Philippians 4:6 [Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;] If you are not saved, then let this be the beginning of not only a new year, but a new life. For those who are believers, remember it is okay to stumble as long as your heart has the desire to do good and you learn from your mistakes. If you know someone who is struggling, try to be an encouragement to them. May your new year be filled with new blessings. May the Lord strengthen you and help you achieve your goals.
May God Bless and Keep You!
Love In Christ,