Our scripture this week is Matthew 24:36-44.

44 So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.
Matthew 24:44

Jesus gives us the summary of this lesson in verse 44 “you must be ready”. Is there another choice? Unfortunately there is, and many are following that path by not preparing their hearts and lives for His return.

It’s not as if they are intentionally saying “I choose evil”. Some do, and it is relatively easy to see. For most it is a little slip here, a short slide there, and as thoughts become actions and actions become habits we fall into sin’s trap. The apostle Peter writes “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

How do we avoid falling into sin? John teaches “We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands” (1 John 2:3). The first step away from sin is knowing what God wants of us. Spending time in His Word and discussing with others can show us His will. The second is asking forgiveness when we fail. We are still responsible to God and others for our actions, and there are still consequences, but sincere repentance will mend the relationship and bring us back into compliance with God’s commands.

Loving Lord, we know that a contrite heart and sincere repentance lead to forgiveness. Help us to stay on the path You have chosen for us, living in peace with our brothers and sisters. Amen.

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