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A Daily Need

Not long ago my family and I were in the Imperial Valley way down in Southern California. It is a wide agricultural valley, much of it below sea level. It didn’t seem to be overly populated compared to the rest of the state, and yet throughout the valley there was the yellow haze smog.

At first this was a surprise to us, but a little thought made us realize that the smog had originated elsewhere – with all the automobiles in the coastal cities like San Diego and Los Angeles. The prevailing winds no doubt blew the smog in. There is nothing the people of the Imperial Valley can do about it, I’m sure. They just have to live with it.

So do we. We just have to live with it. We live in a world that the Lord created “good.” Our first parents lived in a perfect Garden free from sin, sickness and death. But we know the account of how they rebelled against the Lord and brought sin into the world. Their sin, like the smog from the coastal cities, has been blown into each of our live and become our sin too.

And we have to live with it. We have to live with all the sin our neighbors generate that blows into our lives. They have to live with all the sin that we generate that blows into their lives. Sometimes the smog we all generate becomes intolerable and erupts into jealousy, conflicts, violence, bitterness, revenge, hatred and wars. Because of that we have a daily need for forgiveness from the Lord Jesus and one another. Because of that we daily look to the cross of our Lord Jesus. Because of that we come to Communion for the assurance of the forgiveness of our sins. Because of that we begin our worship services with a confession of sins – because we need forgiveness very much.

We also need a day to come when the Lord will set things right – when he will blow the smog out of the valley for good. Otherwise it will never happen. But He has promised to do that. He has promised to return to our world. No more will the sins of others cause ruin in our lives. No more will our sin cause ruin in theirs.

Until that time we have to live with it. And yet we live in hope – not that this world will be free of sin and evil, But in keeping with God’s promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells (II Peter 3).




 Pastor Bill Lehmann