Whiter Than Snow

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Adam ate the apple and our teeth still ache.--Hungarian Proverb

Sometimes you read a book and it changes your view on the world.  Other times you read and realize that deep down inside the ideas in the book resonate with what you have experienced in life. Whiter Than Snow: Meditations on Sin and Mercy has been that book for me.

Written by Paul David Tripp, Whiter Than Snow, explores the world of sin and God's mercy towards it.  Have you ever just totally blown it?  Have you messed up (think "sinned") to the point that it can't be redeemed (so you think)?  Have you been blind to your own faults and sins?  We all have done these actions at one time or another.  Whiter Than Snow speaks to these issues by going through Psalm 51.  What is so special about that Psalm?  It is the one in which David prays to God after he is confronted by Nathan about his sin with Bathsheba.  There are 52 short meditations or devotional entries that explore our sin and its ability to deceive us.  We may think our problems are on the outside of us (other people or circumstances), but our worst enemy is ourselves.

Here is a taste of Tripp's ideas from the book:

"It's not just your sin that separates you from God; your righteousness does as well. Because, when you are convinced you are righteous, you don't seek the forgiving, rescuing, and restoring mercy that can be found only in Jesus Christ."

"Isn't it wonderful that we can stare our deepest, darkest failures in the face and be unafraid? Isn't it comforting that we can face our most regretful moments and not be devastated?...We can face that we are sinners and rest because we know that God really does exist and that he is a God of mercy."

"What you actually need is a Redeemer. Why? Because only a Redeemer can rescue you from you!"

"Sin is deceitful. It hides, it defends itself, it wears masks, it bends its shape into more acceptable forms, it points fingers of blame, and it even questions the goodness of God. Sin always first deceives the person who is sinning the sin."

While all this talk of sin may be depressing, I didn't find the book to be a downer at all. If anything it helped me realize that I need to take a hard look at my heart.  That the problem is not outside of me.  The problem is within me (sin nature).  However, the beauty of the story is that God is a God of grace.  We can always go to Him no matter how black our hearts have been.  There is something freeing in coming to terms that I am broken and that God accepts me in that brokenness and sin.  We don't have to don a costume to impress Him.  His love is always there!

Paul David Tripp has another devotional on a chapter of Psalms {51}.  Both of them are well-worth the read!!

Here is my post on A Shelter in the Time of Storm

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