Resting in the Promise of Christ

Our dog

Our dog resting on the promises of Christ

I can be really hard on myself to the point where I just give up. I did this with God one time. I realized that I would never be able to match up with my ideal self — the one I know God wants me to aspire to — because my ideal self is without any weaknesses or sin.

So, back when I was a beginning Christian, I just gave up and walked in the sin I was struggling against. I walked in it for a long time and it made me miserable, but I could see no way out. You can probably imagine the kind of sin a teenager can get into and it lasted well into my twenties. I was totally stumped, and even angry at God. I knew nothing good lived inside of me, that all my thoughts and actions were sinful. I had the desire to think and act as I knew God wanted me to do, but not the ability. (Romans 7:18)

My problem was this: I had heard that Jesus died for me but I had not personalized it. I never thought that the things I did were the ones that put him on the cross. Most of my sins were not that bad so I figured I just had to deal with them on my own. But as I grew in my sin, my sin grew, and what was once a small sin was now really grieving me and controlling my life. I wished more than ever to be rid of it.

I began to miss my savior so much. I missed praying, I missed reading about him, and I missed believing in him. So I returned  to my faith with head bowed, knowing I was probably the least likely to be accepted by him. When I returned to him with this attitude, I found that the promise of Christ is that all of our sins are covered by the blood he shed on the cross: big and little. We don’t have to be perfect. We belong to him even in our sinful state.

I will never be sinless on this earth, I will always be struggling against one sin or another, but I don’t have to wait until I am perfect before I can belong to him. My weapon against sin is Christ living in me. I can rest in the promise of Christ on the cross. He will battle the sin that lives in me and free me from its bondage. I need only go to him. He will help me every step of the way. I have even prayed for the desire to be free of a particular sin.

I’m a little smarter now, and free from many of the sins of my youth, Praise God for that. But that devilish desire to be perfect creeps up on me until I once again want to give up and cry, This is too hard! The minute that happens, I know that I have been living under this same lie that leads me away from God. Fortunately for me, I can pick up almost any book in the New Testament and read that Jesus Christ died for me so that I might be free from the power of sin and so live a new life forever. I also have something I ask myself whenever I feel impatient with the sin in my life and what I am doing/feeling/thinking is just too awful and how can I really be a Christian: I say, does Christ need another nail in his hand, another stripe on his back just to cover me completely? Of course not. The sacrifice is sufficient. We can rest on that.

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5 Comments

  1. its so true. my shame and guilt over my short comings and character defects can bring me farther away from God (note its the feelings I create that tear me away from God). When i start feeling this way i try to take my life back, i stop looking to God. How does that make sense!? I can’t live my life without God’s help. The beauty!? The more i ask God for his help and love with my short comings and character defects….the closer i grow towards God.

    I can grow closer to God, but i will always only be human. the human God made me to be 🙂 I have a friend who always says “If God loves me unconditionally who am i to argue with Him?” Thats another beautiful gift that your blog reminded me of, humility. Humility, like when you bowed your head, i say to God “I can’t do this on my own. I don’t want to do this on my own” Because I don’t know. There are many things I don’t know, and thats okay..it is part of my faith. If i had all the answers, if i could handle my “sin” on my own…..who am I be trying to be?! And humility works both ways. just like you wrote my shortcomings are not so awful that God doesn’t or can’t love me.

    recently I have thinking and looking a lot to nature to see God more, understand the Spirit inside me more. To be reminded of how God works. The sun, shines on everyone and everything. The sun doesn’t choose who gets sun and who doesn’t. It just shines. It gives unconditionally. The rain, it pours on the roses and the thorns. the rain gives life to the weeds and flowers. It gives unconditionally.

    one more thing your blog reminded me of: a friend recently shared this with me and i just love it:

    if i am walking a spiritual life. If i am bringing God into all i do. if i am with God in all i do. My success will be spiritual. and my failures will be spiritual.

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