My spiritual journey: moments of clarity, ponderings, and vast irritations

Monday, June 7, 2010

Blurb of the day :)

As the deer pants for water so my soul longs for you, Jesus! I am thankful that, unlike the Psalmist, Jesus is within me, and my thirst is quenched at every waking moment! I need not seek the living waters, the living waters abide within me!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Short blurb on forgiveness

When I look at the overall meaning of all the verses on forgiveness, I find that I AM forgiven.
I John 1:9 is the only verse in the NT that seems to state otherwise, so there must be a reason for that. When I read I John, I see that he is talking to two different groups of people. He goes back and forth in chapter one between two comparisons, those who walk in light, and those who say they have no sin. As saved people we are those who walk in light. The second group must be unsaved.
I John 1:9 also must be referring to unbelievers because we already have the righteousness of God! That's all over the NT as well, we already know we have been made the righteousness of God in him, so habitually confessing our daily misteps will not make us any more righteous.
Also, see I John 2:12 "I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake."
Now he says your sins ARE forgiven you! This can't be in contradiction to
I John 1:9. Here he is clearly talking to saved people. We are forgiven, period.
Just as Christ died once for all, so I ask forgiveness once for all my transgressions. As far as the east is from the west so far has he removed my transgressions from me!

Guilt and Shame Part 2

This started as a reply to Zee, but ended up a full post. :)

What I was gonna say is that what I feel (i.e. guilt and shame) does not change what I am (the righteousness of God in Christ Rom. 5:19, II Cor 5:21). Sometimes I feel unworthy, guilty, or just plain unloveable. That does not change WHO I am! I am still worthy, cleansed, and loved and accepted in the beloved (Eph 1:6).

Why do we feel guilt and shame? Usually it is over sin that we cannot forgive ourselves for. Christ has forgiven us! Let go of the guilt and shame! Shame is not something that we confess to God, but something that Satan puts on us to steal our joy. When I am feeling guilty, I cannot bask in the fullness of the blessings God has for me. Like Adam and Eve, I hide in the bushes to cover my nakedness, but there is no longer any need for fig leaves! I am free to stand fully exposed before the throne of God without fear of judgement. He is the lover who revels in my beauty, why should I cower in the dark? Within myself I have doubts, fears and uncertainties, but they are unfounded! Christ has washed away every spot and every wrinkle! I am, as Col 1:22 says, "holy, unblameable, and unreproveable in his sight!"

To avoid God because I feel guilty would be like hiding from my husband because I feel fat. He doesn't love me based on my outward appearance, and to put my internal feelings of inadequacy upon our marriage bed is unfair to him. God is ever reaching out with unconditional love, and here we are taking our inadequacies and trying to hide from him. I think we all do this!

The bottom line is, we will never be good enough to please God on our own. We just can't do it. But isn't that what salvation itself was about? When we were lost in sin, and completely unable to keep God's laws, Christ reached down and provided salvation for us. It was not by works of righteousness that I did, but according to his mercy he saved me (Titus 3:5).

Okay, so now that I'm saved, now can I please God with my good works? Of course not! Paul says, "Are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh? (Gal 3:3) Nope. Of course not. We are saved by faith, and we mature in Christ by faith. Justification is by faith and sanctification is also by faith. It's a whole other blog, but the sanctification issue is simply one of realizing that we are dead to the law and sin and of yielding/surrendering to Christ (Rom 6). We are free from the bondage of the law and the bondage of sin and death. There is no reason for guilt and shame, for there is no condemnation (Rom 8:1) for the Christian!

So, If I sit and dwell on my seeming failures, I will always be full of shame and guilt. I will always feel the need to continually ask God for his forgiveness. Honestly, I would feel pretty hopeless! But when I recognize that the blood of Jesus has already taken away ALL of that, and that God does not see me based on my past, my mistakes, or my feelings, but on the basis of Christ Jesus living in me, then I am HOPEFUL!

Another thought... Guilt is a judicial term. (Rom 3:19, every mouth stopped, the whole world guilty before God) With the word guilt there is implied a deserved penalty. Christ has already paid the penalty for sin. When we stand before the Judge, and he holds up his righteous and holy laws before us we can say 'guilty' all we want, but all he sees is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. "It is finished!" Jesus cried.... It truly was. The word he used there was "Tetelestai" or "Paid in Full." We are judicially right with God for all eternity, and therefore can never be 'Guilty.'

thoughts on Darin's podcast free believers network 4/29/2010

Had this saved as a draft, just never published it:

Being conformed to the image of Christ is simply Christ freeing you to be fully yourself without the bondage of the world! The bondage falls away, and the true self that Christ created is free to shine! :) -me

we are created in His image! As the world is stripped away, as religion is stripped away, what is left is the perfect creation that reflects Christ himself!!

I thank Jesus all the time for revealing this to me... I was always afraid that as I gave myself to him he would force me to be something terrible, something that I had no desire to be! But I was SOO wrong!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Emotional Divorce

I've been thinking about the concept of God 'blocking' our prayers, and of us losing fellowship with God. It's crazy! We have boldness to enter the throne room of God at any time, based solely on the blood of Jesus! We are made the very righteousness of God! There is nothing within a saved person that should block prayers, as our sins no longer separate us from God. There is nothing that gets in the way... except for the unbelief of the person who is praying. God NEVER puts up a barrier. Prayer is not based on any works that we do. But sometimes we feel as though we are undeserving to come to God. Sometimes we may feel guilty, shameful, or unworthy, and at those times we feel that we must cleanse ourselves before we can come to God. Is there any work that man can do to make themselves more pleasing in God's sight? No! Of course not! He is only pleased with Jesus. If Jesus is in us, he is pleased. Period. God doesn't plug his ears and turn his eyes from his children. He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. That was not a conditional promise.

So, what are these blocked prayers? In a previous blog, I talked about how that feeling of prayers bouncing off the wall is because we don't realize just how VERY VERY CLOSE AND INTIMATE our Saviour is to us. He is not millions of lightyears away in heaven, he is right here living within us! He can hear our every thought, our quietest whisper. But sometimes we just don't have the faith to believe. Sometimes it is due to sin, sometimes it is just because we are feeling very 'human,' but we just don't really believe he's right there waiting to hear us. We don't really believe he is going to answer, and we don't really believe that he cares. There is this part within us somewhere that feels so unworthy of the 'Christ in me and me in Christ' relationship, that we don't approach him with boldness, as is our right, but in timidity and fear. We don't come to him with passion and love, but with trembling and anxiety that he will judge us and find us lacking.

As I pondered this, my mind immediately went back to 2005 when I was pregnant with Evan. I was struggling with so many things, and I was fighting surrender to God. I didn't feel worthy of anything and my mind was in great turmoil. These feelings were tumbling over into my other relationships and I was feeling very disconnected from my husband. I stumbled upon a copy of Dr. Phil's book on marriage and began reading it. As I went through taking his quizzes, I came up categorized as being in 'emotional divorce.' I was shocked! I was hurt! I was angry! I couldn't believe it! I called Chris in and demanded we go to counseling. I wept, and told him our marriage was falling apart, and I'd known it for ages, and now I had the proof. He almost laughed! To him, everything was fine! He loved me passionately, and the only problem he could see was that I was very sick and needed healing. Our marriage was fine. At the time, I insisted he must be in denial - I was utterly flawed, we were a wreck, and there was no way we would make it through another year!

Of course, we made it through a year, I surrendered to God, found healing and realized that my mind was running away with me and believing lies. Our marriage had been fine all along. I was just so sick and depressed that I was seeing things that weren't true.

And so Christian's believe the lies of Satan. We have a low point - we stumble, we fall - and we forget who Christ has made us and focus on what we can see with our physical eyes. We take all those feelings of inadequacy, shame, and regret and we then transfer them to our Father. We point our fingers at him and say, "You aren't listening to me!" The whole time his love and passion for us never changes. The fellowship is not broken, we have just forgotten that it is there.