Psalm 51:17 - The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.
There are folks who work for Lutheran Hour Ministries who spend a great deal of time on the road. So much time away from home can be a difficult thing for them to endure. Still it is what needs to be done if LHM is going to succeed at bringing Christ to the nations.
As a one-time frequent-flyer, I found another thing which was difficult to endure: baggage inspection by the TSA, Standing in slow-moving lines whose length could compare favorably with any ride at Disneyworld was a great frustration. Taking off your shoes, removing your computer, unpacking all the liquids, and having a metal-detecting wand swept over you was perturbing.
Then, of course, I always had to open my bag for a hand inspection. It seems the microphone I carried with me looks like an explosive, and the wires which I wrapped around it appeared to be incredibly suspicious.
As the years passed, I wondered, do they ever catch anybody with anything?
Now I know. A TSA blog covering the single week before Christmas says the eagle-eyed folks at our airports confiscated
1. 73 pistols ... 62 of which were loaded and 26 of which had a round in the chamber;
2. six hand grenades at one airport and one grenade with military ordinance at another;
3. a wide assortment of knives, switchblades, and a nasty looking machete.
Now on its blog the TSA was very nice as it talked about its confiscations. They seemed sympathetic to the folks who had lost an expensive handgun and almost apologetic as they explained how a person with a firearm at the airport can be arrested and fined up to $11,000. Most of all they said they were saddened because every time such an article was confiscated it caused a great delay in line for the other passengers.
Oh, one other thing they said. They wanted people to know that even though bringing the firearm to screening was an accident, it still was a crime.
That's a point I believe the Lord would understand. You see, when the Lord judges sinners, He hears a great many excuses. High on the list of explanations which are put before Him has to be the statement, "I didn't know it was a sin," or "Yes, I knew I was doing wrong, but I had a very good reason for doing what I did."
The truth is the Lord's grace and mercy doesn't mix well with our excuses and explanations. His Son entered this world to carry our sins and forgive us. When we acknowledge, rather than try to justify our transgressions, we receive the cleansing which is promised in 1 John 1:9: "For if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, grant that I offer you a repentant heart and not a poor excuse for all I have done wrong. Then let me rejoice in the forgiveness which the Savior has won with His life, suffering, death, and resurrection. In His Name I pray. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by the TSA week in Review on December 27, 2017. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written, click here.
In Christ I remain His servant and yours,
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries
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