Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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“Just a Closer Walk”
by Tom Goodman
March 9, 2005

Special Note for Parents!  Be sure to have your children in class by 9:30 a.m. each Sunday.  Our new G-Force program is packed with fast-paced activities that require a full hour!  We’ve advised all children’s workers to begin at 9:30 even if they know that not everyone has arrived.  We don’t want your children to miss out on all the great things the Kids Ministry Team has planned!

A police officer recalled an assignment one icy night.  He was called out to a downed power line to keep people away until the electricians could arrive.  The line had fallen into the branches of an ice-covered tree, and sparks were flying everywhere—reds and greens and bright whites.  He said, “I never knew anything so deadly could be so beautiful.”

He could have been talking about the things that get us into trouble.  The Bible warns us, “So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall!”  (1 Corinthians 10:12)  When Jesus taught us to pray, the last request he taught us was:  “Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.”  (Matthew 6:13)

An old Christian folk song puts it this way:  “I am weak but thou art strong; Jesus, keep me from all wrong.”  When you talk with God, admit your weaknesses and trust his strength.

Jesus wanted us to get to the point where we could honestly say, “Lord, I don’t trust myself.  No matter how moral I am, no matter how disciplined I am, if left to myself, I will stumble.”

Have you gotten to that point?  Some of us have not.  We have become over-confident in our ability to please God and stay out of trouble.  Maybe your life has been one of discipline and commitment.  Your faithfulness to God practically shines, at least compared to the weaker commitment of those around you.  You may have even found yourself bold in areas you used to be timid—you’ve stuck with a daily prayer routine, you’ve started Bible studies, you’ve witnessed to others, maybe you’ve even led someone to the Lord.

All of that is truly marvelous, but if the truth be known, you’ve begun to get a little over-confident.  You’re starting to think, “You know, I’m running the Christian life so well now, those sins that used to tackle me could never catch me now.”

That’s where the Lord’s Prayer comes in.  Every time we pray, we need to include the last request Jesus taught us.  We need to say, “I am weak but thou art strong, Jesus keep me from all wrong.”

This Sunday at 10:45 a.m. we’ll take a careful look at this line from the Lord’s Prayer.  Come renew your humble dependence on God!


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