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UPHOLDING THE JOY OF SALVATION: Unveiling Three Little Sins That Almost Took My Joy

Isaiah 12:2-3 Behold, God, my salvation! I will trust and not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and song; yes, He has become my salvation. Therefore with joy will you draw water from the wells of salvation.

Psalms 51:12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Hebrews 12:1 THEREFORE THEN, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses [who have borne testimony to the Truth], let us strip off and throw aside every encumbrance (unnecessary weight) and that sin which so readily (deftly and cleverly) clings to and entangles us, and let us run with patient endurance and steady and active persistence the appointed course of the race that is set before us,

There is joy in salvation. There is joy in knowing God. There is joy in having the Holy Spirit, yes, there is joy in having unhindered relationship with God. 
Back in the days after I gave my life to Christ, the love of God was in my heart like a deer that panteth after the brook of water. It can be rightly said that the zeal of God consumes me. The joy in my heart knew no bounds the day and few days after giving my life to Christ. 
Things got so different that those things I loved doing before I no longer do them; all for Christ my Saviour I let go. The salvation of Christ ushered into my life a blessed living hope, a life free from sin, a life free from fear, an assurance of the presence of God at all times, plus, i even felt secure in all my dealings. 
Reading the Bible/studying the Word gives me joy, my moment of meditation refreshes and ushers in joy. Oh, I was never tired or become weary of studying the Word. My prayer life was great, it was never a problem even to wake up in the middle of the night to call unto the gracious God. Fasting was never a problem. Attending church activities becomes what I will never joke with. 
All these things brought joy into my life infact, I love and do find joy in evangelizing, I have boldness in praying for the sick and the wounded. More so, I have listening hear to hear what God is saying per time. Glory to God. 

My first love with/for God was great, BUT, it's not for a long time that I began to see things. What has happened to me?, what I'm I doing wrong?, where have I gotten it wrong?, and what has happened to my first love? My devotion to God becomes shallow, suddenly, and at some points a sense of loneliness do come over me. Those things that I found so easy to do before in the presence of God becomes burdensome all of a sudden. 
"so much good and bad wrapped up in each life To build up and serve or tear down in strife. A mine of diamonds, a bomb to destroy? Depends entirely on who gets the boy. The devil, the world, and flesh makes their bid..."
Meanwhile; My woe is not because I don't pray or read the Bible or go to church, NO, neither is it that God/Holy Spirit left me, I was rather insensitive and ignorant. 

Little do I know of the deadly effect of "God understands". There is always excuse for skipping and procrastinating church activities, and personal devotions all because God understands and nothing will happen. It does makes me without guilt of haven done anything wrong overlook some little little sins that the scripture talks about. 
The little things in my ignorance becomes a part of me, and they are eating me deeply and sorely and I know not that they are hindrances to my spiritual growth. Yes, I study the Word, I prayed, I fast, but... ... "God cannot behold iniquity; and it is our iniquities that separates us from Him. 

Effrontery of confrontation. 
Back in the days when I was a growing up, days when studying the Word is like a food I must eat. Something crept into me unknowingly and that's Effrontery to confront and challenge any thoughts. I developed the bereans like manner of checking the scriptures to seek the truth, which I supposed is very good, but I took all the other way. A sense of pride and arrogance comes into me, i thought I know so much, I can stand up to challenge or confront anybody, I was never patience enough to listen before concluding. Listening to the Word and finding out the truth which is a great bedrock to spiritual growth now becomes a medium to which I shrink in my spiritual growth. All because I became un-teachable (you know like listening to a minister teaching/preaching and you being like," what is this one saying") and the mentality of knowing it all lies deep within me. The joy therein in reading the Word to hear from God wasn't there anymore, why? I only read to counter and raise arguments the next day. A sense of fulfillment and assurance of divine leading the kind that only the Word of God brings wasn't there anymore. It was as if the revealer of truth and mystery was never there again, but He was there waiting & working patiently for the man to see his nakedness for himself. 

Not in a bit do i say having something you care about is a sin, but the very fact that it gravitates itself above the cares I had for the things of God makes it a snare to me. My devotion in the place of prayer, studying and evangelizing at a point gradually began to shrink and diminish. Why? I took paramount what I will be, what I want, what I need above all else. Trust me, divine mandate is and should always be the very first whatsoever, the thoughts of God and God alone should always be at the first. But when the other is, things may not be palatable anymore. 
Going about my cares and how to get them becomes the order of each day, devotion time got reduced, prayer and studying becomes an option that I procrastinate, never to be remembered again for that day. You understand my plight I believe. The zeal of the house of God becomes something else, the kind of Joy of the presence so divine and sweet that the psalmist talks about in the house/presence of God became shallow. 

 These and many others are little silly mistakes that almost took away the joy so divine that I cannot but behold in the presence of the Divine. And not until I come to the end of myself, acknowledged that I know nothing, and needed to be filled much more. Not until the reality of the Word confronted my empty pride, and I see myself a sinner that I am, not until I bow my head after beholding my nakedness and cry for fixing to the only One that can fix me, i remain just the same. 
 So, the best we can do is to look in deep within ourselves, see what we're doing wrong, pray the Spirit to reveal our little bad self. And get it fixed. Let us shun the little sin that so much entangles us and work worthy of our Saviour Jesus Christ. " 

"Fix me Jesus, o fix me. Mold me Jesus, o mold me Lord, draw me close Lord, o draw me close."
Glory to God.

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