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The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none who does good. 

The Lord looks down from heaven on the children of man, to see if there are any who understand, who seek after God.  They have all turned aside; together they have become corrupt; there is none who does good, not even one. 

Have they no knowledge, all the evildoers who eat up my people as they eat bread and do not call upon the Lord ?  There they are in great terror, for God is with the generation of the righteous. 

You would shame the plans of the poor, but the Lord is his refuge.  Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion!

When the Lord restores the fortunes of his people, let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.
Psalm 14:1-7 ESV
http://bible.com/59/psa.14.1-7.ESV

There was a time when I walked like a fool,  when I talked like a fool,  when I did foolish things because I did not understand,  because I did not seek after God. I didn’t care about anything nearly as much as I cared about myself. I wanted money,  power,  reputation,  honor from men,  control over the things around me, the ability to enjoy the pleasures of this world without limit, the ability to take and have what want rightfully mine. You see,  I want interested in justice. It wasn’t even about “just us”. It was about “just me”.

But all of that came with a cost. Because that matter that I was serving didn’t know anything about good gifts. Everything that I received eventually revealed an unexpected cost or consequence. That’s what happens when you wish to a genie for the things of this world that he can give you instead of serving the one true God who will give you eternal blessings. Do you realize these are two different masters? Do you know that only one has your loyalty?

You see, we started out serving that other master, but we have an opportunity for our lives to teach. Not everyone else has to be a fool. Not everyone else has to have a wasted youth. Not everyone else has to carry the same scars on their character that reveal the battles we have been through. Not everyone has to be a Paul.

Do you realize that because of Paul’s life example and teaching,  young Timothy’s life was much different? Do we realize that because of the faithful people around him,  Samuel’s life from the time that he was a boy was very different than the world? I wonder how often we don’t understand the impact that our turn from foolishness,  however early or late in our own lives might have on the lives of those around us?

You see,  we aren’t meant to walk and act like fools. And what could be more foolish than claiming with our mouths that we are a child of God,  but living like a child of hell.

If we come to the end of our lives and we have imitated a kind of godliness with some half hearted interest in religion and in escaping hell,  but we have continually denied the power that could make us a holy people set apart for His use, that could reconcile us day to day as we draw close to Him – will we have any defense against the one and only unpardonable sin,  to blaspheme the very Holy Spirit that seeks to save us from ruin?

You see, man would look at each others words to make a decision, a measurement,  a judgement, about the wisdom or foolishness of a man.

But God judges our hearts, because the tongues of wicked men are full of lies and deceit and their slippery words will attempt to hide their true desires.

We cannot fool God about who our real master is. I just wonder if we examine the example of our life’s actions closely enough to reveal who it is most of us truly serve – or if we have been trickled by our slick words and thoughts justifying our own wicked ways.

Our life example is either creating situations where others might learn from our faithfulness and live a life like Samuel and Timothy where there is abundant life throughout – or our life example may leave them with ways years before they seek the Lord and become fruitful and useful to the Lord – or maybe their whole lives are wasted, lost in fruitlessness.

Do we care enough to live differently?

Are we tired of playing the fool?

May we have the eyes,  ears,  and hearts to receive the Lord’s wisdom,  and the understanding to apply it in our lives today. Don’t let it be stolen away from us,  but let us cling to your guidance today and see our lives changed,  and let us find comfort in knowing that tools and opportunities are being stripped from the hands of the enemy by the faithful example of our lives,  visible to all. Help us to rest in your strength,  Lord, so that we will remain humble and not proud even as you refine our lives to be more like you. In your authority, crush the enemy beneath our feet, and rebuke him, Lord, for standing in the way of the needy and the oppressed and the afflicted and the meek and the mourning. Come, Holy Spirit,  come, and fill our lives with your righteous and holy and loving nature. And we wait expectantly and cry out,  come Lord Jesus,  come,  and deliver your people from this world of foolishness and wickedness. Amen.