(hello friends! for some reason, i'm writing from the "amen corner" of life this morning. it's a good place to be! i can only think that my heart is prepared to participate in a FULL weekend of learning and growing through Jennifer Rothschild and the Fresh Grown Faith Conference for our women, and a series at church called "Here, Near, and Far Away" where Dr. Mark Moore from Ozark Christian College is blessing us with 3 sermons - 3 DIFFERENT sermons - this weekend. You can find out more at http://crossroadschristian.com, and even listen to them, should God lead.)
Now back to our regular scheduled blogging...
When I came to Jesus, as a young adult with a VERY colorful past, I had to reckon with how to deal with all the forgiveness God was willing to give me.
ALL my sins, just washed away??"
I'd find myself saying over and over, wondering what the catch was...surely this was one of those "too good to be true" deals...but I never found any fine print at the bottom of the page - and the footnotes in my Bible never proved it was a conditional deal.
Then the truth of the matter was the realization that I could accept HIS forgiveness...but could I forgive myself??
THAT TOOK TIME
and 30-some years later, I still have to pick myself off, dust off the pride, and ask for forgiveness again -
BECAUSE I DON'T ALWAYS LET ME BE FORGIVEN.
He HAS separated me from my sins, and the shadow of His cross casts long between them. (amen!)
I know I'm still a sinner. I still hold that bread that is His body, cup that is His blood, and allow my heart to break over the things that I could have done differently. done better. or just shouldn't have done at all.
And if I do it right, IF i do it right, then the forgiveness comes easy - from Him, me accepting it from Him, and walking away with that...moving forward on this journey with Him. I'm learning.
Yes, I'm learning - to not look back. Like the pillar of salt that He so graciously put in the Bible to remind me to not even glance at what I used to be (well, only for the edification of the Body - so He can be glorified in how far He's brought me - and still bringing me - amen?). But not to look, not to long, not to desire, not to wonder "what if...".
Because, come down to it - heart and soul of it - straight up shoot from the hip - it could, LIFE could,
NEVER BE BETTER THAN THIS.
And it's easy to remember that
NOTHING I CAN DO WILL MAKE HIM LOVE ME MORE
NOTHING I CAN DO WILL MAKE HIM LOVE ME LESS
So guilt, this guilt, THIS GUILT, that Satan tries to stir up in me - won't stick. It's useless.
BECAUSE I'M FORGIVEN
and that's THAT.