I’m not exactly sure how to start this post. I should be working on my sermon for the worship conference (it’s less than two weeks away now), but I feel like something is blocking me. Everyone is asleep, I’m not tired and I definitely have the time to do it in this moment, but, I feel the need to take care of something first.
I need to encourage you.
While I do have a particular someone in mind, I think this will encourage more than just my friend. So, if life is going your way or everything is falling apart, if you’re thrilled, depressed, happy, sad or just plain worn out, I hope you’ll read this with an open mind and an open heart. God might just use it to say something to you.
One of my all time favorite verses in the Bible is Philippians 1: 6 which says, “…being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” We have a not-so-slight tendency sometimes to get bogged down by the mistakes in our past and the skeletons in our closets. Sometimes, we busy ourselves by doing things that might feel good or make sense in the moment, but we know won’t make us happy or profit our eternal future. Often, we do it because we don’t know how to handle the weight of all we carry.
Thank God for repentance and forgiveness!! 1 John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” But, we don’t forgive like that, do we? Because of that, we sometimes forget that God isn’t like us and doesn’t keep throwing our mistakes in our faces over and over again.
Helen Baylor, an AMAZING Gospel/Christian recording artist, sang a song YEARS ago that I still remember to this day:
“Into the Sea of Forgetfulness You’ve placed all of my sin
Though I’m the one who keeps reminding You over and over again
Into the Sea of Forgetfulness
As far as the East from the West
Seventy times seven You’ve forgiven me
And You keep cleansing me
And placing my sins, into the Sea of Forgetfulness
How awesome is that?!! We serve a God who loves us enough to have gone to the cross, paid our debts and promised us (in Romans 8:1) that “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”
So why don’t we believe it?
We kinda act like a dog with his tail between his legs. But, that’s not how God intended for us to receive this amazing gift He’s given us. Everything God has done for us – and continues to do – He did (and does) out of His immeasurable love for all of us. We are incapable in our own strength of deserving or earning that love. Don’t feel badly about that, because that’s just the way it is. We were born having a sinful nature into a sinful world. Instead, let the love we have FREELY been given at great cost inspire you and fuel you to live in Godliness. You can not do it on your own. If you did, you wouldn’t need God. And, God knows that – hence the Holy Spirit. God has made a way for us to have a way to both read AND walk in His Word which just happens to be a blueprint for His divine plan for our lives.
So be encouraged!
You may have messed up. You may have made mistakes. Maybe you’re paying for them now in ways you didn’t want to (yes…I am talking to you, dearie…love you – mean it!). But, God’s love is bigger than all that. He’s big enough to handle your sin. He’s big enough to forgive you. And He’s big enough and gracious enough and merciful enough to help you get to the place He called you to be. If you’re constantly looking backwards, you can’t see what’s in front of you – that’s a good way to fall down. Look forward! If you’re following Jesus, walking behind Him and in His footsteps will surely take you to the place He wants you to be.
*I love you, my dear friend, my family. Stay blessed.*