Put it in Writing
Tax season is very stressful for me. I confess to being a pretty disorganized person. (My wife has helped me a lot with this as she is very organized) So in February every year I begin the agonizing process of sorting receipts, completing my ledger account, compiling lists of numbers, etc., etc., and generally doing stuff I hate doing.
As a Christian though, I am obligated to pay taxes. Jesus' admonition to “pay Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s” (Matthew 22:21) and Apostle Paul’s command “if you owe taxes; pay your taxes” (Romans 13:7) makes it clear we have no choice in the matter. We pay because we must. In all honesty, it is not the paying that I mind the most. It’s that it forces me to be organized and be able to give an account of all my financial transactions in the past year to the Government.
I must admit that I feel very relieved when Tax season is over. The payments are all sent in (usually just in time) and my books are complete. There is a certain satisfaction in knowing that everything is in writing, balanced and completed. Whew!
We do all this work because the government says we must. We obey. In the same sense, I think we should be organized and write things down in our spiritual lives as well.
The book of Deuteronomy has a few examples of how important it is to God to have things written down. The following are paraphrases:
Deuteronomy 10:2 - Moses made the two stone tablets, but it was God himself who wrote the Ten Commandments on them.
Deuteronomy 17:14-20 - When you have a King, the King must write for himself a copy of the Law. (The first five books of the Bible) and he must read it Every Day!
Deuteronomy 27:18 - When you’ve crossed the Jordan river, set up large stones on Mt. Ebal and write very clearly all the words of this Law on the stones.
Why do you think God emphasized writing things down? Maybe he knew how good the Israelites were at forgetting things!
In my early Christian life, I was fortunate to have lived with several Christian brothers in a house in Lansing. One day I got in on a conversation between two of my “roomies”. One young man, Carlos, was trying to encourage another roommate who was discouraged about some things in his spiritual life. Carlos had some advice for the young man that I shall not forget. He told him to put down in writing:
- His personal testimony; how he came to the Lord.
- Every blessing that God had blessed him with. For example: Godly friends, family, purpose in life, the Holy Spirit, etc.,etc,
I too followed Carlos’ advice that day and it has helped me to weather discouragement and storms in my life. Why not try it?
We used to sing a song years ago that went like this: “Count your blessings, name them one by one, see the many things that God has done.” When life gets you down, count your blessings and write them down.